Even though they have been part of American culture for a long time, many individuals have never been to a rodeo. With their rising popularity, some may be interested in going, but a little unsure at what takes place. Let’s look at an average rodeo and exactly what the first-time attendee might anticipate.
The events in a contemporary professional rodeo can be divided into two classes; rough stock events and timed events. The Significant rodeo events include:
Bronc riding – perhaps one of the most iconic of the rodeo events. Riders attempt to remain on the horse for 2 seconds. A maximum of 50 points is awarded to the rider and the horse. Both scores are added up to your total with scores from the 80 point range being quite good and scores in the 90s being outstanding. Bronc riding is further split into bareback bronc riding and saddle bronc riding.
Bull riding – basically the same notion as bronc riding, but due to the size and unpredictability of this animal, bull riding is much more dangerous.
Timed Rodeo Events:
- Calf roping – rodeo’s earliest timed event, a cowboy chases after a calf, yells a lariat or lasso around the calf’s neck, dismounts, throws the calf to the floor then ties 3 of its 4 toes collectively.
- Breakaway roping – a type of roping where the calf isn’t thrown into the floor and tied. Rather, a very short rope with a flag attached is attached into the saddle. When the calf is roped, the horse stops, and the rope “breaks away” from the saddle.
- Team roping – that entails two individuals lassoing and restraining a full-sized steer. One man will lasso the horns while the other lassos the legs. The cyclists work together so that the steer will lose balance and lie down.
- Barrel racing – an event based on agility and speed. Barrels are set up in a cloverleaf design. Riders will gallop around them as quickly and gracefully as you can without knocking them around.
- Steer wrestling – much like it sounds, a rider will jump off his horse, then catch a running steer with their horns and attempt to wrestle them into the ground. Most likely the most dangerous event in the entire rodeo.
- Goat tying – a rider approaches a tethered goat, jumps off, and, very similar to calf roping, yells the goat into the floor and ties 3 of its feet together. Intended for younger participants to obtain skills associated with calf roping, it isn’t a portion of the genuine rodeo competition.
Though not part of this competition itself, lots of rodeos begin with a Grand Entry where riders carrying various flags and banners enter the stadium with the playing of the national anthem to follow. Variety acts, including musicians or trick riders, may get involved in the rodeo also.
A big part of history and American culture, rodeos are almost always interesting and frequently fantastic fun – especially when you understand what events to anticipate.
Over time, Rodeo Austin has expanded its programs and attractions and improved its donations to youth each year. The annual Fair & Rodeo is the organization’s largest fundraiser but also relies on yearlong events and over 1,000 volunteers to continue to grow the next generation. Come be a part of actual Texas grit… hands-on and live! You can donate to rodeo scholarship, visit rodeoaustin.com for more information.