Ranch rodeo

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A ranch rodeo is a traditional type of rodeo in which teams of cowboys or cowgirls from different ranches compete against each other in events based on the type of work they do every day.[1]

Ranch rodeos differ from the more common PRCA-style rodeos in several ways. For starters, the contestants are not professional rodeo cowboys; instead, they are usually full-time ranch hands who compete in annual ranch rodeos for fun and for bragging rights.[2] The events in ranch rodeos are more similar to the tasks commonly performed on a ranch, and the equipment and tack used are the same as those used during everyday ranch work.[3] Instead of competing as individuals, the contestants in ranch rodeos compete as a team representing the ranch they work for.[4] Though there are often individual awards such as "Top Hand" and "Top Horse,"[5] the main prize is for the top overall ranch team.[6]

Sanctioning bodies include the Working Ranch Cowboys Association, which sponsors the World Championship Ranch Rodeo in Amarillo, Texas;[7] and the Western States Ranch Rodeo Association, which sponsors the WSRRA National Finals in Winnemucca, Nevada.[8]

Competitive events[edit]

Most ranch rodeos consist entirely of timed events, with the goal being to complete the assigned task in the shortest possible time. Common ranch rodeo events include:

  • Calf branding - Teams have to find and rope specific calves (identified by a number they are randomly assigned) out of a larger herd of cattle, bring the calves to the branding area, and "brand" them by marking the calves with chalk.[9]
  • Steer doctoring (or ranch vet) - Similar to calf branding, except the cattle are older and larger, and the event simulates bringing a sick animal in from the herd for veterinary care.[10]
  • Team penning - Teams must sort off a few specific cattle (each identified by a specific number marking) from a larger herd, and move those cattle into a small pen at the other end of the arena.[11]
  • Wild horse race - Teams must saddle a wild horse and ride it across the finish line at the far end of the arena.[12]
  • Wild cow milking - Teams rope a wild cow and hand-milk it into an empty soda bottle. One team member then runs the bottle across the finish line on foot, and pours out a small amount of milk for the judges to prove they accomplished the task.[13]


  1. ^ http://www.sarodeo.com/rodeo/ranch-rodeo-finals. Retrieved 2015-05-12
  2. ^ Culver, Galen (2014-08-22). "Great State: Ranch Rodeo Practice is Everyday Work for These Cowboys Near Velma, OK". KFOR. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  3. ^ http://www2.brazosport.edu/~jedibill/ranchrodeo.html. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  4. ^ http://www.blackhillsroundup.com/ranch-rodeo. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  5. ^ http://www.okcattlemen.org/ocaannualrangeround-up.aspx. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  6. ^ http://wrca.org/2014-oca-range-roundup-rodeo-results/. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  7. ^ https://wrca.org/category/wcrr/. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  8. ^ http://www.wsrra.org/events/?page_id=95. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  9. ^ http://www2.brazosport.cc.tx.us/~jedibill/calfbranding.html. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  10. ^ http://www2.brazosport.cc.tx.us/~jedibill/steerdoctoring.html. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  11. ^ http://www2.brazosport.cc.tx.us/~jedibill/teampenning.html. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  12. ^ http://www.wsrra.org/events/?p=778. Retrieved 2015-05-12.
  13. ^ http://www2.brazosport.cc.tx.us/~jedibill/wildcowmilk.html. Retrieved 2015-05-12.