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5th Annual Early Californios Skills of the Rancho

Save the Date: The 5th Annual Early Californios Skills of the Rancho will be held July 6-9, 2017 at the Elks Rodeo Grounds in Santa Maria, California.

Building on the success of the first event in 2013 in Santa Ynez, CA, “Skills” has grown to be one of the largest gatherings of California Bridlehorse devotees. The event showcases skills needed to effectively, efficiently and safely handle livestock while preserving the horsemanship skills and traditions handed down over generations beginning with the early Californios vaqueros.

We invite your participation as a competitor, vendor, sponsor, or observer in Santa Maria to share with us all the appreciation we have for this style of horsemanship. Devotees, craftsmen and artisans who embrace these traditions have few places to come together. We look forward to you joining us in July.

As a special treat this year, Mike Beck will be preforming at 7:30 Saturday night on July 8th.

Event Descriptions, Rules, Schedule of Events (Including Go Order) and Scoring

One of the main goals of this competition is to preserve and pass on the values and skills of the early Californios stockmen and bridlemen. All competitors should, at all times, try their best to uphold these values throughout the entire competition, whether in the arena or not. Respect should be shown to horses, cattle, and other competitors at all times. We are here because we believe in this manner of working, and want to see it continued. We are all on the same team in a way.

Click on the links below to see Event Descriptions, Schedule and Go Order and General Rules and Judging Criteria for the 2017 CBA Skills. Please note that the Schedule may change; please confirm the day and time of your event(s) at check-in.

Event Descriptions

Schedule and Go Order

General Rules and Judging Criteria

Here are the Ranch Patterns for the Skills competition (Note: you will need Adobe Acrobat to open these *.pdf files; if you don't have Adobe Acrobat on your computer, click here to download it for free):

Open Bridle

Green Novice and Green Youth

All Other Classes

Sign Up for the 5th Annual Early Californios Skills of the Rancho

As with last year, you will complete and submit the Entry Form on-line. You can pay your entry fee on-line as well using Paypal or a credit card. You can also pay by check but note that your entry is not official until payment is received. Also note that all events have a limited number of riders; you may lose your event if payment is received late.

We strongly recommend you read the event descriptions and rules and scoring information provided above before signing up. It is important you sign up for the class of event that best fits your skill level; the event descriptions can guide you.

Also note that there are limits to the number of participants in each event. If your event is full, the on-line form offers an option to add your name to a waiting list for that event. You are not charged for the event until you are officially entered.

New This Year: If spots are available you can enter a second time for 2-Man Doctoring, Mixed/Ladies Doctoring, and Ranch Horse. On the entry form, select the 2nd Entry/Overflow option if you want to enter a 2nd Ranch Horse Class in the same "rider" category (e.g., intermediate, novice, etc.) for a second horse in the same or different gear (bridle, two-rein or hackamore). You will not be charged until you entry is confirmed.

Important: Waiver and Release of Liability. Before you can compete in the Skills we must have a signed Waiver and Release of Liability form on file. However, you can enter the Skills using the on-line entry form (see link below) without the waiver but your entry will be canceled if we don't receive the signed waiver. Please print the Waiver and Release of Liability Form, sign it and mail it to:

Cindy Wilson
10616 McBroom St #2
Sunland, CA 91040

Note: Entries are closed while we process the waiting list for each event.

It is possible some events may reopen; check back here to determine entry status. If you want to be added to a waiting list, please email your contact information to Cindy Wilson.

Vendor and Sponsorship Information

The interest and attendance at the Annual Early Californios Skills of the Rancho continues to grow each year. It is a great venue for marketing, showing, and selling your product or showing your support for the Californios Bridlehorse Association. We look forward to you joining us in July.

Click here for a Vendor Application Form. For more vendor information, please email Elena Juarez or call her at 619-606-7119

If you would like to become a Sponsor at this year's event, click here to see the various sponsorship options. If you need more information about our Sponsorship program please email Glynna Hoekstra or call her at 858.531.8125.


If you are interested in donating a prize, awarded to riders on Sunday afternoon, with recognition of donor, business, artist, etc., please email Stan Roy at or call Stan at (661) 478-0912.