The Team Roping event features a pair of ropers each mounted on a well trained horse. They enter the ropers box and at a nod of the head the gate keeper releases the steer.
The header (ropes the head end) must give the steer a head start and if he fails to do so, a ten second penalty is added on to the team’s total time. This is called “breaking the barrier”.
Once out he ropes the steer around the neck or the horns, dallies up (2 wraps of the rope around the saddle horn), and turns off with the steer following. The heeler then rounds the corner swinging his loop and throws his rope, if all goes well he catches two feet in his loop and then he dallies up. Once the heeler has dallied the header must turn his horse to face the heeler and when the ropes are taut between the horses and the steer the flagman drops his flag to signal for a time. If the heeler has only one hind foot in his loop a penalty of five seconds is added to the total. A fast run in Williams Lake rodeo arena is in the 5 – 6 second range.