Cutting is a sport born of necessity and dates back to a time when ranchers in the American West hired cowboys to work and sort through herds of cattle out on the open range, separating those in need of branding or doctoring. In this western-style equestrian competition, a horse and rider work as a team to demonstrate the horse's athleticism and ability to handle cattle.
A contestant is required to make at least two cuts from the herd, one of which must be a cut from deep inside the herd while the other(s) can be peeled from the edges. Once the selected cow has been driven clear of the herd, the contestant commits the horse by dropping the rein hand to feed slack and give the horse its head. At that point, it is almost entirely up to the horse except for allowable leg cues from the rider to prevent the cow from returning to the herd; a job the best horses do with relish, savvy, and style. Many of the Empty Saddle Club members not only practice this sport at the Club but travel to Cutting competitions throughout the western United States.
Our weekly Cutting practice schedule is as follows (weather permitting):
Tuesday evenings at 5:00 P.M
Saturday & Sunday mornings at 9 A.M
The Club charges a $40.00 cattle use fee.
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