16/ MAY 2021 THE RIDER

• The horse lets a cow slip back into the herd. • The horse and rider change to a second cow after starting to work the first. • The horse and rider fail to separate out a single cow after leaving the herd. • The horse quits working the cow before the cow gives up.

Bonus points are added for:

Ontario Cutting Horse Association Visit us at:

Executive Directors: President

Vice-President Shawn Minshall Scott Reed

Secretary/Treasurer Laurie Reed Directors:


Eric Van Boekel 519-879-6699 416-420-9147

Katherine Van Boekel 519-983-0156 Amanda Law Greg Gallagher Tyler Scott Joe Hudon

519-855-6602 613-200-1235

905-648-2242 613-264-7250 519-835-0841


The Judges Card When a competitor enters in a NCHA cutting

class they are agreeing to have a judge give his/her personal opinion by assigning a score to their two and half minute run. But behind that personal opin- ion is a set of rules each NCHA Judge follows. The score is tallied based on overall marks and penal- ties.

deducted or awarded according to how the run goes. A zero will be given if you walk out before the buzzer. A score of 60 generally occurs when you pick up the reins and train on the horse. Scores in cutting-horse competitions range between 60 and 80 points, but a total above 75 points is excep- tionally good. The Judges card explains what the judge

looks for, what the marks mean, and how many points are penalized for different infractions or awarded. Different judges have different styles of using the marks. You may see a box with 3 +’s in

Competitors start on a 70. Points are either

NCHA Area 21 Director Scott Reed

Eric Van Boekel

Newsletter: Laurie Reed

Please direct mail to our treasurer: Laurie Reed

1642 Concession 5, Waterford, Ontario N0E 1Y0

905-864-5312 519-879-6699

Media & The Rider Submissions Amanda Law, Laurie Reed & Lexie Reed - OCHA Website:

Don Crawford

it, that just tells that judge he wants to give more than 1 point on that cow or run. A ✔does not add or subtract any points, ✔+ adds 1⁄2 point, + adds 1 point, ✔- subtracts 1⁄2 point, and, – subtracts 1 point. Some judges will use a little + or a big + to determine a higher score. The point is, don’t try to calculate the score literally. Each judge’s sheet is based on his or her educated opinion of how well or how poorly the run was performed. Both rider and horse affect the score in a cut-

ting competition. The team begins with a base score of 70. Penalty points are subtracted and bonuses are given. Here’s what judges look for.

One point is subtracted (each infraction) if:

• The rider uses the reins to guide the horse while it is working a cow. • The rider makes a noise to direct the cattle. • The rider uses a toe or foot on the horse’s shoul- der as a signal. Three points are subtracted if:

• The rider lifts the reins to stop the horse before the cow has given up. • The horse and rider scatter the herd while sin- gling out a cow. • The rider spurs the horse in the shoulder. • The horse bites, paws, or kicks the cattle.


• Good herd work - not scattering or upsetting the herd while separating out a cow. • Setting up the cow well before working it. • ‘Eye appeal’ - good riding, a still hand on the reins.

• Handling a difficult cow well.

major penalties such as: • Horse quitting a cow • Losing a cow

• Keeping the work near the center of the arena. During the run you want to avoid the

• Changing cattle after specific commitment • Scattering the herd

Five points are subtracted if:

• Failure to make a deep cut • Hot Quit

• Horse Pawing or biting a cow • Second hand on reins • Cueing in the shoulder • Back fence • Failure to separate a single animal after leaving the herd

• Horse turning tail to a cow • Horse falling to the ground Credit on a run can be earned by a num-

ber of variables:

• Excellence in herd work • Skill in driving and setting up a cow in the center of the arena • Handling a difficult cow

• Showing courage in confronting a difficult cow • Riding with Loose reins It is always a good idea to review your judges card after your run to see where you can improve. And to also review the video of your run, if available.

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