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Thursday, March 26, 2015

3 Things to Remember - Hunter Washburn

I want to see what you want to know. We've talked about cold reading cattle, how to read the barrier and get out sharper. Now I want to see your comments on what you think is a big part of rodeo. Finance plans, going down the road, animal welfare, do's and don't's of rodeo AKA: RODEO 101. There are so many things out there one can think of and put in their arsenal of good ideas and practices.

One thing I want to talk about this time is, "why make the same mistakes as everyone around you does". One thing my parents have told me is if your going to do something and get ahead in this world you have to have a couple things.

One: God before all things. Without his presence in our lives we are not whole. With that being said I did my own thing for awhile, just put God and my Bible on the shelf. The devil has a way of showing us that you can do anything you want and still be one of the best in anything. So you think, "why can he/she be so successful and so far from the Lord?". Well, the devil wants you to not care and do whatever you want. My point is this:  if you want a life that that has meaning, find God and pursue him.  You will have a life of hardship, but nothing worth doing comes easy. I've always known about God, but never followed him till my sophomore year of high school. The start of my junior year God lead me to Sky Ranch to the elite rodeo clinic. This is where I was saved and began a new life. Now I'm on to bigger and better things in rodeo, and I owe it all to my family and my Lord and savior, Jesus Christ.  

Two: Learn from others' mistakes. This one is sometimes hard to do, but I've found to ask, "what happened with that run?". And ask several people. You might agree or disagree but you have to be open to new things.

Three: dedication and practice. Without these two things you won't be successful in life or in the arena. Once I was told luck is where preparation meets opportunity. Sure I might have drawn the best steer but I still have to use what I've learned and worked on for the last couple months or years to make the best of that steer. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Start - Rope Myers

The Start...
This is probably the least practiced but most important part of being successful as you continue on to the next levels in rodeo.

Often in practice, very little thought is given to how much of a head start is given to each animal. While most get the hang of catching up in the right part of the arena, in the practice pen they don’t have a clear enough understanding or enough repetitions to really be proficient at this vital part of rodeo.

First: Practice
At the next rodeo, you go to sit behind the box and with the aid of a friend practice the start. Put the hand you hold the reins 2 inches above either their shoulder or knee, and as each animal leaves the chute, drop your hand when the proper head start has been reached.  Then have your friend judge how well you got the start. After about 10-15 runs switch and let your partner do the same, and you can judge how they did on the start.  You will be surprised how this exercise will sharpen you up on your scoring ability.

Second: DIY
So many people leave this very important element up to someone else. They walk up and ask the guy on the back of the box what the start is. While he may be honest and he may even be good at scoring, that guy is looking to see what “he” needs to see and you may not score the same as he does. If you “throw them for the show and score them for the dough” why would you leave something as important as that to the prevailing opinion?  Figure out the start for yourself!

Third: See the Big Picture

While the goal is to be close to the barrier, you need to realize there are times when six inches late may be a better start that knocking it out of the latch. There are other times when your best chance of placing is to try to see how far you can stretch it.  Also, if I am going hard at the barrier rope it is going to let me catch up quicker than if I am pulling when I get there.  

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Never Give Up - Hunter Washburn

One of the most important things in rodeo is learning how to win at every level. It is comprised of many things; including horsemanship, reading cattle as soon as you nod your head, how to enter, and what days are the best to be at the rodeo. You have to go, pay your dues and just keep on going until you get it down and begin winning consistently.