[Type 1:]

Tak­ing a Holt

Spin to Win Rodeo - - Competitive Edge -

• The Perks:

These head horses score flat-footed, look­ing down the rein at the steer in the chute, just wait­ing pa­tiently for their header to say launch off like that lady at the wa­ter park. When a header pulls on that horse’s bri­dle reins, he stays. When the header loosens the reins, he goes. Some horses will score like that for­ever, es­pe­cially when you just need to see a lit­tle bit, and that fits with their nat­u­ral tim­ing. Those horses are ideal, be­cause we all have a ten­dency to pull when we nod, es­pe­cially when the steer doesn’t go any­where. They stand in the cor­ner when you pull, and they go when you drop your hand, and they can do that ev­ery day for the rest of their lives.

• Ex­am­ple:

My black horse, Stranger, who I rode from 2006 to 2011, re­ally fit that mold. He’s prob­a­bly the only one of my horses that was ever this type of horse. He locked onto the cow the sec­ond I rode in, and all I had to wait on was the steer to get right. My job was to just go rope, which made head­ing pretty easy.

• Chal­lenge:

If you’re want­ing to pull on your horse or hold them, you’ll be more suc­cess­ful at shorter scores. The trou­ble I’ve had is try­ing to make ev­ery horse work like this. I can teach a horse to let me pull on them, but then get to the rop­ing and they’ll ei­ther let you score or they won’t. But what do you do if you get there and they won’t?

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