TEN months ago Chris Dornauf had his left arm ``chewed up'' in a piece of farm equipment, leaving him with no feeling in his left hand.
On Saturday, the 20-year-old defied that injury to win the open bull ride at the Gowrie Park Rodeo.
Mr Dornauf had spent an hour in a paddock last May screaming for help, with his severely injured arm trapped in a potato trailer.
After eight operations to regain the use of his arm, Mr Dornauf is still to regain feeling in his left hand.
Yet, displaying the characteristic his mother, Leeanne, deemed ``pig-headed'', the man who described bull-riding as his life decided to compete in Saturday's event.
While he has been training with bulls since the age of 13, Mr Dornauf said he was very nervous before entering the ring.
``If you're there, they'll come after you.
``And if I was gonna fall off, I wouldn't be able to get them off me.''
Mr Dornauf's nerves were eased by the knowledge that his friends were close-by if the bull became uncontrollable.
``My friends had to tie my hands, my rope, my spurs and my shoelaces,'' he said.
``They've all supported me along the way.''
It had been a long journey for Mr Dornauf, who said bull-riding had been the biggest inspiration in his bid to regain the use of his arm.
``It's more mental than physical [in bull-riding],'' Mr Dornauf said.
``You need to stay positive.''
With this in mind, the determined 20-year-old was back at work just two weeks after leaving hospital.
``I couldn't stand sitting at home,'' he said.
``It slowly gets to you.''
After his success on bull Artworks at the weekend, Mr Dornauf said he gained the confidence he needed to take him to rodeos on the mainland in the next season.
It was also inspiration for him to pursue his dream of becoming a professional bull-rider in America.
Two more operations aimed at fixing the tendons in his lower arm will hopefully see Mr Dornauf regain feeling in his hand within the next few months.
Although he said he looked forward to the results, Mr Dornauf said he regretted the operations may mean he is out of bull-riding for a lengthy period.
Another lesson he learnt while training with bulls will help him see it through.
``It's important to always land on your feet,'' he said.