You may not have recognized your favorite bullfighter at the recent BFO in Athens, TX.  Beau Schueth, Toby Inman, Ely Sharkey, Weston Rutkowski and Aaron Mercer (Pictured L-R) ditched their own trademark styles to honor a BFO Pioneer recently lost to an ATV accident, the "Alabama Slamma" Ross Hill.  For one night, these BFO stars donned white shirts and red bandanas as a tribute to one of the most captivating personalities the sport has ever known.


3x BFO World Champion and the rest of the rodeo world poured out their condolences and memories of Ross.  Weston lamented, "I learned what it took to be at the top of my game [from Ross].  He was an innovator of the sport, motivator to anyone and everyone that would listen, counselor to the younger generation, and role model to everyone who was afraid to be themselves.  I love you and will miss you.  You will never be forgotten."


As the BFO hits our next tour stop in Reno, NV June 22-25, rest assured Ross Hill's memory will continue to be a source of inspiration for these athletes.


Athens, TX Results:


Friday Night:


1. Aaron Mercer - 89 pts

1. Weston Rutkoswki - 89 pts

3. Beau Schueth - 84 pts

4. Ely Sharkey - 80 pts

5. Toby Inman - 73 pts


Saturday Night:


1. Aaron Mercer - 88 pts

1. Beau Schueth - 88 pts

3. Weston Rutkowski - 83 pts

4. Ely Sharkey - 82 pts

5. Toby Inman - 73 pts


Average Payout:


1. Aaron Mercer - $2,500

2/3. Weston Rutkowski - $1,375

2/3. Beau Schueth - $1,375

4. Ely Sharkey - $500

5. Toby Inman - $250




About Bullfighters Only: BFO was founded by bullfighters and is Freestyle Bullfighting's Premier Professional League. BFO features an international roster of elite athletes competing against the meanest fighting bulls for the largest purses in the history of the sport.


BFO Partners: Cavender’s, Pendleton Whisky, Hooey Brands, Flexfit, Rock and Roll Denim, W-W and Gold Buckle Beer.




The Cowboy Channel will broadcast BFO's first major event of 2021 on Sunday, February 28th at 7:30PM CST.  To find the Cowboy Channel in your area, check HERE.  You can also watch all the action on the Cowboy Channel Plus app.


The Cowboy Channel will continue to broadcast BFO Tour events throughout 2021.  Stay tuned for our updated schedule!



About Bullfighters Only: BFO was founded by bullfighters and is Freestyle Bullfighting's Premier Professional League. BFO features an international roster of elite athletes competing against the meanest fighting bulls for the largest purses in the history of the sport.


BFO Partners: Cavender’s, Pendleton Whisky, Hooey Brands, Flexfit, Rock and Roll Denim, W-W and Gold Buckle Beer.




FORT WORTH, TX - After hosting the wildly successful BFO World Championship in December, the gladiators of BFO are set to return to the Fort Worth Stockyards for an electric night on Saturday February 20th.



Scheduled to compete: Reigning 2-time BFO World Champion Aaron Mercer, 3-time BFO World Champion Weston Rutkowski, “Silent Assassin” Beau Schueth, Toby “Demo Man’ Inman, Alex McWilliams, Dylan Idleman, Dekevis “Air” Jordan, Ely Sharkey, Austin Ashley, Seth Wilson, Ben Walton and Justin Ward.

To make the night even more special, BFO is adding music!  The incomparable Red Shahan hits the stage at approximately 9:30PM to keep the party going until 1AM.


Tickets start at $25.  VIP Options include pre-show tour and meet-n-greet.  Buy your tickets HERE.



About Bullfighters Only: BFO was founded by bullfighters and is Freestyle Bullfighting's Premier Professional League. BFO features an international roster of elite athletes competing against the meanest fighting bulls for the largest purses in the history of the sport.


BFO Partners: Cavender’s, Pendleton Whisky, Hooey Brands, Flexfit, Rock and Roll Denim, W-W and Gold Buckle Beer.


Aaron Mercer Wins His Second BFO World Championship


FORT WORTH, TX - The venue changed.  The world changed.  Aaron Mercer didn’t. 



When the dust had settled at Cowtown Coliseum after the final day of the 2020 BFO World Championship, everyone lingering inside the historic building had the feeling they had witnessed something truly special.


The previous three nights had seen each contending bullfighter compete in a late-night post-NFR performance to determine placement for Sunday’s Championship.  The BFO Gladiators were the toast of Cowtown, as they put on an electric show each night.


On Sunday, for the first time in freestyle bullfighting history, the event was broadcast LIVE on national television.  Each man knew his chance for a World Championship was potentially two bulls away.  


Mercer’s fight in the Championship Round versus Manuel Costa’s “Big Nasty” was what BFO color commentator Andy Burelle described as “possibly the best I have ever seen.” The massive red bull made pass after pass only to scream by the reigning champ and miss by inches.  Mercer finished the fight with his trademark “Mercy Roll” as the crowd erupted.  Everyone knew a score in the 90’s was coming, so when 90.5 was announced it was no surprise.


When asked by Elise Wade how he felt about winning consecutive BFO world championships, Mercer fought for the words: “I’m just really honored to be around these guys. They’re my heroes and they’re my brothers.  That’s why we do this.”  When asked what the plan is for 2021, Mercer just smiled and said, “Let’s go for three.”


Mercer leaves Fort Worth with $22,500 in cash, BFO’s coveted Title Belt made by RB Buckles and Stidham Leather, along with a $15,000 Whitetail hunt provided by Kryptek.


The 2021 Quest for the Belt begins in a month and there’s no reason to believe Mercer is slowing down anytime soon.






1. Aaron Mercer  Calgary, AB           $22,500


2. Beau Schueth  O'Neill, NE            $ 9,500


3. Toby Inman*  Davis Junction, IL    $ 7,125


4. Dylan Idleman*  Madill, OK           $ 4,675


5. Weston Rutkowski  Haskell, TX    $ 3,500


6. Dayton Spiel*  Parade, SD           $ 3,200


* includes Hooey "Best Trick" Bonus




About Bullfighters Only: BFO was founded by bullfighters and is Freestyle Bullfighting's Premier Professional League. BFO features an international roster of elite athletes competing against the meanest fighting bulls for the largest purses in the history of the sport.


BFO Partners: Cavender’s, Pendleton Whisky, Hooey Brands, Flexfit, Rock and Roll Denim, Kryptek and Gold Buckle Beer.



The BFO World Championship will be held on Sunday, December 13th


FORT WORTH, TX – The question on the minds of all freestyle bullfighting fans this year has been, “Now that the NFR has moved from Vegas to Texas, will BFO have a 2020 World Champion?” The answer is a resounding “YES!”


Twelve of the most talented freestyle bullfighters in the world will first compete in their Preliminary Rounds on December 10th through 12th at 10PM under the lights of Cowtown Coliseum in Fort Worth, TX.


Then, on Sunday, December 13th at 2PM, these twelve gladiators compete in a winner-takes-all battle. With a purse of over $60,000 and a coveted BFO World Championship up for grabs, this will be the most prolific day in freestyle bullfighting history!


When asked about the unique opportunity to have a World Champion crowned at Cowtown Coliseum, Bullfighters Only CEO Joey Austin explained, “In a year where we resisted the urge to put on any bullfights that weren’t up to our standards, we knew it would be a stretch to find a home that would meet our fans’ and our bullfighters’ expectations. The Trop (Las Vegas Tropicana) has just been so good to us. Then, when Cowtown Coliseum called, we knew it would be a perfect fit for this unique year. I mean, I love the tent concept, but the opportunity to crown our World Champion inside one of the most historic western buildings in the United States…we just couldn’t pass that up!”


“Not to mention, we had to make sure the money was right,” Austin continued. “BFO has set a standard and, while it would’ve been easy to have a few bullfights this year and blame the low payout on the pandemic, we didn’t want to go that route. Our sponsors really stepped up and we’re proud that these bullfighters will get to run at a purse of 60-grand…and, as always, our athletes don’t pay an entry fee.”


Just a few of the superstars scheduled to compete are 3X World Champion Weston Rutkowski, 2019 World Champion Aaron Mercer, “Silent Assassin” Beau Schueth, the “Demo Man” Toby Inman, Andres “Sasquatch” Gonzalez, Dekevis “Air” Jordan and the phenom Austin Ashley.


Nate Jestes, BFO General Manager, further expounded on the format choice. “The format will be simple. While 2020 regular season earnings will be used for a potential tiebreaker, the World Championship will be earned right there in the dirt of Cowtown Coliseum over four days. Even the PRCA had a year (1977) where the winner of the NFR was the World Champion. This will be fun for the fans and fair for those guys who couldn’t compete as much due to the pandemic.”


The fiercest Mexican Fighting Bulls in the World will be matched up against these twelve competitors. Troy Bradshaw from Penthouse Fighting Bulls and Manuel Costa will bring the heat each heart-pounding round.


The stellar team of Anthony Lucia and Matt West will call the action, with bullfighting legend Andy Burelle on the mic providing the color commentary. The always-entertaining Justin Rumford, 8X PRCA Rodeo Clown of the Year, will be adding his hilarious talent to the mix.


The Cowboy Channel, fresh off of broadcasting ten rounds of the National Finals Rodeo, will carry the BFO World Championship LIVE Sunday December 13th at 2PM.


For tickets to the BFO World Championship, visit https://cowtowncoliseum.com/events/bfo-world-championship.



About Bullfighters Only: BFO was founded by bullfighters and is Freestyle Bullfighting's Premier Professional League. BFO features an international roster of elite athletes competing against the meanest fighting bulls for the largest purses in the history of the sport.


BFO Partners: Cavender’s, Pendleton Whisky, Hooey Brands, Flexfit, Rock and Roll Denim, Kryptek and Gold Buckle Beer.



The Cavender’s Cup will be held on Sunday, October 18th 


WACO, TX – One of the most exciting events of 2019 was BFO’s “One HOT Bullfight” held at the Extraco Events Center. 


While 2020 has been a year of turmoil and uncertainty for so many, BFO is proud to partner with the Heart of Texas (HOT) Fair and Rodeo to bring the most thrilling ticket in live action sports back to Waco.  


“With about 75 percent of our events cancelled this year, we are ready to bring the fans a show!” said a reinvigorated Weston Rutkowski, the 3x BFO World Champion.  “We live for this adrenaline and nothing compares to freestyle bullfighting.” 


"Last year we debuted One HOT Bullfight and it was a tremendous success performing to a full house in the Extraco Coliseum. We are excited to continue our relationship with Bullfighters Only and bring this great, high-energy show back this year. We believe it is the perfect way to close out our 2020 rodeo,” said Heart O’ Texas Fair & Rodeo CEO and President Wes Allison.


Along with the coveted Cavender’s Cup, the best-of-the best, including dominant 2019 World Champion Aaron Mercer, will be competing for a purse of $10,000. 


They will have their skills tested against an equally stellar pen of fighting bulls.  BFO Stock Contractor Troy Bradshaw of Penthouse Fighting Bulls explains, “I have some hot bulls that have been ready to see action all year. With the talent BFO has coming, I have no doubt there will be plenty of electricity and some 90-point fights.”  


The HOT Fair and Rodeo leadership will take all necessary precautions to ensure a safe environment for fans.  Seating will not be at full capacity, so make sure you get your tickets in advance! 


The BFO Cavender’s Cup takes place on Sunday, October 18th at 7PM inside the Extraco Coliseum in Waco, TX.  Tickets go on sale Tuesday, September 8th.  For ticket information, visit www.hotfair.com.


Reigning BFO World Champion's sights are set on new season


LAS VEGAS – Only a year ago, Aaron Mercer was in the feeling out stages of his freestyle bullfighting career. 


My, how things have changed. Since he burst onto the scene in April, Mercer has been a dominant force and recently wrapped up the 2019 campaign by claiming the specially designed BFO World Champion title belt. 


It didn’t come easy. To make it that far in such a short timespan, Mercer harnessed an incredible amount of athletic ability. He mixed it with intensified training at BFO Development Camp in Georgia and a lot of hard work, and it paid off to the tune of $121,350 in annual earnings. 


“I remember going to D-Camp feeling so out of place,” said Mercer of Calgary, Alberta. “I didn’t even think they liked me, because I was just a yappy Canadian. Then I went to Ada (Oklahoma), and they realized they had to deal with me. 


“I just kept progressing, kept working hard at it. I had lots of people pushing me, and that’s what makes the BFO so great. In every bullfight, I just wanted to do better.” 


He was quickly accepted into the strong core of combatants, men who cheer on their opponents while also trying to outscore them. The camaraderie in freestyle bullfighting is unmatched, and Mercer felt that right away. 


“I pushed myself to the end, even to the point to where I was wearing myself out and fought poorly,” he said. “I took time off and got my mental game right before Las Vegas. What made it better was I had some great friends, Justin Josey and Colt Oder. They just pushed me to do so much more than I thought I could do.” 


He also had the other top bullfighters in the game pushing him at every competition. 


“Mercer had a great year,” said Weston Rutkowski, the three-time world champion from Haskell, Texas. “He’s been consistent all year, and that’s what you like to see. You want to go up against guys like that. That’s why I fight in the BFO.”


Mercer was definitely that guy in 2019. He entered the year-end championship with $61,350 in earnings, then added $10,000 to that on the first day by winning the Roughy Cup. That was enough to secure his world championship before the bulk of the Las Vegas Championship began. 


“Mercer has been lights out all year,” said Beau Schueth of O’Neill, Nebraska. “He has been able to stay healthy and go to all the events he wanted to. That’s a deadly combination. It’s not that he just went to the, but he did really good at all of them.”


It's all about the passion and drive he’s gained in the last year competing at the most elite level in freestyle bullfighting. 


“We love it; we live for it. There’s no better feeling than tearing up a bull,” he said figuratively, “I was lucky to train with (Dusty) Tuckness for a couple of weeks before Vegas. He helped me crisp up some things. 


“That ultimately saved my ass, and that saved me going into the finals. I’m definitely going back to his place for more workouts. They are more “kill you” workouts, but it’s all for the greater good. There’s a reason why Tuck’s the greatest of all time.” 


Mercer would like to add his name to the list of bullfighting greats, which includes many of the BFO pioneers. He’s got a lot of work to do though, as his career is still in its infancy. 


Nonetheless, he has a big target on his back heading into the 2020 season. 


“This just means I’ve got to do that much more work to stay on top,” he said. “I’ve always had confidence going into the bull ring. There’s fear in everybody’s eyes, so you’ve just got to overcome it. 


“Now, somebody else wants that damn title belt. Bring it on. I hope they’re working as hard as I am.”


The biggest lesson he’s taken since signing up to be part of the BFO: those who handle business outside of the arena fare better inside of the arena. By harnessing that knowledge, he’s been able to progress extremely quickly as he heads into his sophomore season. 


“I’m also very receptive to watching movements, mimicking movements,” Mercer said. “I watch the greats. I watch the best going. I try to take that into what I do as a bullfighter. 


“I watch Beau Schueth every day. I watch Tuckness, Cody Webster. I watch Josey and Weston. I want to put all that into my tool bag. I say 2020 is going to be a year to remember. It’s going to be the best year Bullfighters Only has ever had, and I’m excited to be part of it.”


Renowned barrelman recognized in Vegas for protecting bullfighters


LAS VEGAS – Barrelman Andy North is the most respected man in Bullfighters Only, and that respect comes from the men he protects. 


“Andy is a man who has perfected his craft,” said Aaron Mercer, the 2019 BFO World Champion from Calgary, Alberta. “He reads cattle and reads the situation, and he’ll move when the bull makes the move to put a guy in a bad position. All of a sudden, he is there and saves your ass. 


“He’s a man with a purpose. When he speaks, you listen.” 


North is more than a man in a barrel, an enticing target for Spanish fighting bulls to hit. No, North is part bullfighter, part man in the can. He’s done both for years, and he can read the bulls as well as, if not better than, the men he’s there to protect. 


During the BFO’s year-end championship in Las Vegas, North took part in his 1,000th BFO bullfight, a milestone that may never be matched unless he’s the one who does it. It’s a telling tale about his passion for the game while seeing – and feeling – the action up close and personal. 


“I think it speaks so much for the BFO,” said North of Piedmont, Oklahoma. “I’ve fought 1,000 BFO fights, and I haven’t fought all of them. I think it’s awesome for Bullfighters Only and me personally for me to fight that many bulls for one organization


“I don’t know how many barrelmen could say they have 1,000 bullfights for their career, much less for one organization. To be asked to come to these events consistently is a good feeling because of the company you’re with, the men fighting bulls and their abilities. It’s a blessing to get to do it over and over.” 


It was only fitting that North’s 1,000th bout came with Weston Rutkowski in the arena at the Tropicana Las Vegas. Rutkowski won the first three BFO World Championships, and North has been in the barrel for a majority of his fights. 


“For North, that’s a milestone in his career,” said Rutkowski of Haskell, Texas. “For me, it was satisfying, something I’ll take with me for my entire career.”

He did it while donning North’s well-known orange jersey instead of Rutkowski’s typical colors. 


“Putting on orange was me saying, ‘Thank you,’ ” Rutkowski said. “It was me saying North has my respect and always will. I put away the green jersey, where it wasn’t about me, and put it more on a guy that does so much more than he gets credit for.” 


That’s just the way North handles his business. He understands freestyle bullfighting, and he’s thankful for its resurgence because of the BFO, showcasing the extreme sport in a way that is wrapped in beautiful production and provides an entertaining show for all who attend. 


“I love bullfighting,” he said. “I love what we do. I like to see those bulls and how each bull has his own personality, how they want to fight. I like to see these kids coming up through the ranks. I’ve gotten to see a lot of talent come through. When you see that, you realize you are part of something special.”


North is best known for making big-time saves when the bulls are taking it to the bullfighters. He uses handles attached to the inside to lift the barrel and then shuffles his feet to get in position. His speed inside of the barrel is unparalleled and his commitment to making the save often results in undesirable circumstances.


“I’m fortunate to be able to pull off some moves that a bullfighter does, but I’m doing it in a barrel with twice as many steps at half the speed,” North said. “It’s fun when you do it. When I’m watching a bullfight, I’m watching their technique, watching where the bull is. When those two things get out of line, it’s a pretty good indicator of when I need to move. That’s why those saves seem so big. 


“Have a helmet on has emboldened me. I feel like my head is protected, and I’m confident in my abilities and know where that barrel is going to end up. It’s a high-risk high-reward kind of thing.” 


The bullfighters appreciate it.


“Andy North’s job is as important as having a good bull for a high score,” Rutkowski said. “He can step in and change the way an injury can happen. You can slip, and North can make a few steps and take the bull away from you. 


“He can’t stop every wreck from happening, but without North in the arena, there’d be a lot more wrecks.”