Steer Wrestling

2016 Bennington Rodeo Champion
Jon Heri

GOAL: The cowboy tries to jump off the back of a hard-running horse down onto a hard-running steer, grab it by the horns, and throw it down harder than the competition. The steer may weigh anywhere from 450 to 750 pounds.

SCORING/TIMING: The cowboy is timed from the moment he leaves the roping box until he has the steer down with its head and all four feet pointing in the same direction.

DISQUALIFICATIONS/PENALTIES: “Breaking the barrier” or leaving the box before the steer is given a head start, adds 10 seconds to the cowboy’s time. The steer must be on its feet and stopped before it is thrown down or the time doesn’t count.

EQUIPMENT: The steer wrestler chooses his own horse and equipment. He also has another cowboy on horseback, called a hazer, to help him.

THINGS TO WATCH: The hazer rides along on the opposite side of the steer to keep it running parallel to the steer wrestler’s horse. The hazer and cowboy must work as a team to get the steer running straight and at a good speed. The cowboy’s horse should sweep on by after the cowboy jumps off, leaving the cowboy at a 45° angle to the steer’s path.