When the steer wrestler nods his head the steer is released from its chute, when the steer has completed its head start the barrier rope is released, and the steer wrestler commences his chase. If he starts too early and the barrier is broken then a 10 second penalty is added to the wrestler's final time.
A ‘hazer' assists the steer wrestler by riding alongside the steer keeping it running straight.
When the steer wrestler catches up to the steer he slides down off the right side of his horse, running his hand along the back of the steer as he is doing so, he then wraps his arm around the right horn of the steer and grabs the left horn as he drops down. He then stops the steer and wrestles it to the ground. The run isn't complete until the steer is laying flat on its side with all four legs pointing out straight. If the steer gets loose before it has been thrown to the ground, the wrestler can take no more than one step to catch it. If the steer is accidentally knocked down or thrown down before stopped, it must be let up onto all four feet before thrown correctly. A steer wrestler has 30 seconds in which to catch and throw the steer.