Oklahoma City, Okla., October 26, 2010 – Local roper Paul Freed of Morgan, Utah, was a big winner Tuesday, October 26, at the Cinch USTRC National Finals of Team Roping being held in Oklahoma City through October 31. Produced by the United States Team Roping Championships (USTRC), the National Finals of Team Roping is the premier event of team roping and is hosting more than 6,700 teams from across the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia and South America.
Freed, and partner Josh Anderson of Bozeman, Mont., roped four steers in a time of 32.87 seconds besting 336 other teams in the #12 Shoot Out division to capture fourth place. The duo received $25,100 of the $305,700 purse, along with custom Gist Silversmith buckles. A total of $4.2 million in cash and $625,000 in prizes are being awarded in the 12 event divisions.
Team roping is a timed event that requires a team effort. A team is made up of a “header” and a “heeler.” The header’s job is to catch the steer around the horns, and then set it up by turning it across the arena. The heeler then rides in and ropes the steer around both hind legs. The clock is stopped when the steer is secured between both ropers and their horses are facing each other.
Much like in the sport of golf, ropers are handicapped or receive a classification rating based on their skill level and competitive ability. Ropers can be classified from a #1 to a #10, depending on their roping position and ability. The added total of both roping partners handicaps determines their division eligibility. For example, if the division is a #11, the total rating for both ropers cannot equal more than 11, with some divisions requiring a handicap floor.