Steer Wrestling - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

Steer Wrestling

Speed and strength are the name of the game in steer wrestling. In fact, with a world record sitting at 2.4 seconds, steer wrestling is the quickest event in rodeo.

The objective of the steer wrestler, who is also known as a "bulldogger," is to use strength and technique to wrestle a steer to the ground as quickly as possible.

That sounds simple enough.

Here's the catch: the steer generally weighs more than twice as much as the cowboy and, at the time the two come together, they're both often traveling at 30 miles per hour. Speed and precision, the two most important ingredients in steer wrestling, make bulldogging one of rodeo's most challenging events.

As with tie-down and team ropers, the bulldogger starts on horseback in a box. A breakaway rope barrier is attached to the steer and stretched across the open end of the box. The steer gets a head start that is determined by the size of the arena. When the steer reaches the advantage point, the barrier is released and the bulldogger takes off in pursuit. If the bulldogger breaks the barrier before the steer reaches his head start, a 10-second penalty is assessed.

A perfect combination of strength, timing and technique are necessary for success in the lightning-quick event of steer wrestling. In addition to strength, two other skills critical to success in steer wrestling are timing and balance.

When the cowboy reaches the steer, he slides down and off the right side of his galloping horse, hooks his right arm around the steer's right horn, grasps the left horn with his left hand and, using strength and leverage, slows the animal and wrestles it to the ground. His work isn't complete until the steer is on its side with all four feet pointing the same direction. That's still not all there is to it.

To catch the sprinting steer, the cowboy uses a "hazer," who is another mounted cowboy who gallops his horse along the right side of the steer and keeps it from veering away from the bulldogger.

The efforts of the hazer can be nearly as important as those of the steer wrestler. For that reason, and the fact that he sometimes supplies the bulldogger with a horse, the hazer often receives a fourth of the payoff.

*Courtesy of the PRCA Pro Rodeo Website

RODEO WESTERN WEEK 2014 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Thursday January 10th

12-2pm Miss Rodeo Montana Horsemanship, Fours Seasons Arena, Fairgrounds, Free

5-8pm Great Falls Chamber Pro Rodeo Mixer, Heritage Inn Plus, Convention Center Free

7pm Cowboy Auction, Heritage Inn Plus, Convention Center, Free

Friday January 11th

11am-1pm Miss Rodeo Montana Speech Luncheon, Holiday Inn

Noon-2pm Contestant Check-In, Heritage Inn Plus, Convention Center

2-3pm Contestant Check-In, Heritage Inn Plus, Convention Center

3-6pm Rodeo Committeeman's Meeting, Heritage Inn Plus, American Room

7pm MPRF Rodeo Performance, Montana ExpoPark, Great Falls

Saturday January 12th

10:30am MPRF Ranch Rodeo Four Seasons Arena, $10 at the door

Noon - 1:30pm Miss Rodeo Montana Coronation and Luncheon, Hampton Inn

1:30-3pm Kiddie Rodeo by Miss Rodeo Montana, Heritage Inn Plus, Free

2:30 - 3:30pm Cowboy Auction, Heritage Inn, Free

7pm MPRF Rodeo Performance, Montana ExpoPark, Great Falls

Sunday January 13th

9:30-11:30 Miss Rodeo Montana Coronation, Hampton Inn

10-11am Church Service, Heritage Inn Plus, Britain Room

2pm Tough Enough to Wear Pink MPRF Rodeo Performance, Montana ExpoPark, Great Falls

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