I want to score well and I want my horse to score well to make every part of the run 10 times better. So, if your horse scores well, the next steps will be easier, like riding across the line, finding where the steer is heading and beating him there and getting to the spot you need to be to throw. If he wants to leave flat and score, then you can reach easier. If your horse doesn’t score well, you break the barrier or you’re late. If you break the barrier, you can’t win anything and, if you’re late, you panic and try to make stuff happen and stuff won’t happen the way you want it to.
Time in the Box
I don’t think enough people score their horses as much as they should. Really, just being in the box with them is so important. It’s not just riding in the box, turning around and scoring your horse, then nodding as soon as you turn around, never walking him forward, then letting the next steer in there and running that steer. You need them comfortable being in the box, and you need that to be their safe place. I like to be able to move my horses around in the box and let them relax. Until a horse thinks the box is his comfort zone and that is where he can be happy, I don’t think you’ll ever be able to progress with scoring your horse completely.
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Practice Pen Goals
You’ve got to be practicing with a purpose, especially when you’ve got limited time. If you only get to run 10 steers a day, don’t waste any one of those steers. Try to get the best out of yourself and the best out of your horse, from the start. Just roping and not actually working on something every run isn’t bettering you or your horse, and your partner isn’t getting the best looks.