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NZRCA replies to ill-informed criticism

NZRCA replies to ill-informed criticism

Press Release 18th January 2008

Gary Jackson President of New Zealand Rodeo Cowboys Association replies to current ill-informed criticism being promoted regarding the sport of Rodeo.

Rodeo has been a recognised Sport in New Zealand for over 70 years, it has some 2000 people directly involved as contestants and production crew. Rodeo is watched and enjoyed by 250,000 spectators annually plus a TV audience of some 50,000 with the 36 venues stretching the length and breadth of the country. NZ Cowboys compete internationally in Australia, Canada, Brazil and the USA. The last 8 years has seen unprecedented growth in both participation and audience appeal making Rodeo a major sporting occasion for many Kiwi families and overseas visitors.

Animals involved in Rodeos are respected, loved, well cared for and valued. As partners in the sport, they are not only of considerable financial value but each has its own personality, bucking style and fan base. These animals, like human beings are unique and the idiosyncrasies of each is admired and recognised, this is why so many Bucking Bulls and Broncs live to such ripe old ages. Bulls are in their prime from age 5 right up to 12-14 yrs, likewise Broncs can still be performing well into their 20`s.

Animals buck as a natural display of energy, obviously for quiet riding horses this is undesirable so they are trained not to buck. We admire and encourage Bulls and Broncs to buck, and indeed help improve their style of bucking. Sheepskin lined flank-ropes are a means of getting them to exhibit the preferred style suited to show a Cowboys riding skill.

The NZ.R.C.A. has all stock Veterinary checked in and out of each Rodeo, and any injuries are recorded, our records indicate that injuries are quite rare and considerably less than other Equine pursuits.

Animal Activists are entitled to their views, Unfortunately they appear to have little or no knowledge or experience of the sport. As Rodeo Cowboys, our members also have their own views, and are entitled to enjoy a perfectly lawful and challenging sporting past-time. All Rodeos affiliated to the NZ.R.C.A. have strict Rules governing their performance, thereby protecting the best interest of Animals, Contestants and Spectators.

ENDS

Web page www.rodeonz.co.nz

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