The cowboy “marks out” by positioning his feet at or above the point of the horse’s shoulder as he takes his first jump out of the chute. To get the highest score, the rider times his movements to coordinate with the horse’s every motion, and spurs his mount, feet positioned outward, from shoulder to rigging.
The rider is seated in the saddle and holds a thick, braided lead rope attached to the halter on the horse’s nose. With the first jump out of the chute, the rider “marks out” with his feet positioned above the horse’s shoulder.
A favourite discipline in western rodeos, saddle bronc riding is easily distinguished by the signature rocking movement of the cowboy on the animal.
The rider mounts the bull by grasping the flank strap, a cotton belt fastened just ahead of the hind legs.
He relies on balance and leg strength to remain seated on the animal’s back for the regulation eight seconds.
Both competitors are given points: the rider for style and the bull, for his bucking skill.
The rider is required to steer the horse cleanly around three upright barrels in the arena. Knocking down a barrel means a 5-second time penalty added to the rider’s time, for a maximum of 15 seconds.
This event requires two riders and one rodeo horse. The first rider starts at a gallop and rides around the first of three poles placed in the arena. Between the second and third poles, the first rider “rescues” his standing teammate by picking him up. At this point, the horse is moving at about 75 km per hour. The two riders then race to the finish line, legs on both sides of the horse.
This event requires two riders and one horse. The first cowboy starts the race and negotiates two poles. Between the second and third poles, he dismounts and leaves his place for the second rider who must cross the finish line with a leg on each side of the horse.