( rider: Tim Stearns)
What did you accomplish over the weekend in 16 seconds?
In cowboy mounted shooting, the fast action rodeo type equine sport 16 seconds is a good run. For the Ct. Renegades State Championships Sept 18 & 19, 2010 Cowboys and Cowgirls from all over the Northeast descended on Enfield, Ct.’s Round Tuit Ranch for some high stake thrilling runs. http://www.roundtuitranch.com/ Each competitor rides six patterns or stages in a championship and the accumulated time and penalties for missed targets settles out the placings sometimes by 1/100 of a second.
BLANKS are used for ammo and all are provided by the competition to insure the safety of the event. A Rangemaster – combined referee and safety official is in the ring to direct the riders and officiate. The guns are Colt 45 type as used in the Old West and in the Rifle Division a Revolving Carbine or Lever Action 45 Long Colt, ( remember the Rifleman TV show?)
Costume is a big part with dress requirements to be clothing of the 1880’s or from the Silver Screen Stars of the West. They take the costuming serious with penalties for a ride in inappropriate dress. For this reason we always have at least one photo club on the rail taking pictures. Their lens catching the flaming end of a pistol at dusk, the flared nostril of a horse, the sweat stained brim of a cowboy’s hat and the windswept manes.
Over in the announcers booth I am calling out the time each course is completed in and more importantly the next few riders. With a new rider needed in the ring every couple minutes we have to have them ready and waiting or lose audience to long boring waiting time and even worse not finish all the rides before dark comes. http://www.carolynstearnsstoryteller.com/
Where can you catch up with this fast action sport? There are clubs in almost every state. We belong to the Connecticut Renegades http://www.ctrenegades.com/ There are any clubs in the Northeast and you can find all the sites on the National Association website http://www.cowboymountedshooting.com/
A favorite competition in the Northeast is called Border Wars. The two day event pits Ct. riders against our neighbors in Mass. in a fun two day cowboy weekend, at stake a red and black flag and the right to fly it at the forthcoming years events. Saturday the Mass Six Shooters http://www.masixshooters.com/ host the event and Sunday the Ct. Renegades. A new venue will welcome riders this year, Goss Farm in Dunstable Mass. will be the site on Oct 30-31, 2010. http://www.gossfarm.com/ I can’t wait for the weekend. ( good weather only won’t risk injury to horses or riders in slippery conditions) The friendly competition, campfire and BBQ, the storytelling around the fire, Cowboy Church Sunday morning and a second day of competition before we all go back to the 21 st century, shake the dust from our chaps and hang up our spurs until another weekend.