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Wild Card Series Guidelines

*Contestants must ride at a minimum of (5) Wild Card Series shows to qualify for the Finals Classes and to be eligible for Added Money & Awards at the Finals.

-5 rides/show minimum to count as a qualifying show.

-Rides in RSNC & DRTPA classes will NOT be counted towards Wild Card Series qualifications, only 5K Arena Jackpot Classes.

*Rides in the 5K Arena Beginner Class will count toward one's number of qualifying shows, however no points will be awarded for this class.

*In a Round Robin class, all cow counts & times are accumulated for each individual rider, not the teams. 5K Arena Round Robin classes will count towards one's number of qualifying shows, however no points will be awarded for these classes.

*Starting in 2018, points will be awarded for the 5K Arena Wild Card Series following the standard RSNC points format. The only difference being the divisional formats used.

*Points for the year will be kept to determine Series Champions Awards.

*Points at the Finals will be kept separately to determine Finals Champions Awards.


*A portion of the Added Money for the Finals will be distributed into 3 Divisional (drag race format) Shootout classes:

- There will be a Top 15 Shootout class for each division (Open, Amateur, & Novice). Only riders ranked in the Top 15 in their divisions will be eligible for these classes, (exception - if any of the Top 15 riders opt out, the option to ride this class will move to the next highest ranked rider).

- The remaining Added Money will be distributed throughout the remaining classes at our Wild Card Series Finals. Anyone with 5 qualifying shows for the current Wild Card Series season will be eligible for these classes regardless of points.

*Any riders with 7 or more qualifying shows will be entered into our "Wild Card" drawing. There will be 3 Wild Cards drawn for each Wild Card Series Finals, one for each division (Open, Amateur, Novice). Each Wild Card will determine an 16th entry into each division's Top 15 Shootout class at the Finals.

*All Riders that qualify for the divisional Shootout classes will be required to ride for any Added Money allotted to their respective division. In the event that their are not enough qualified participants to fill an adequate number of spots to hold a Shootout class, the division in question will revert to a "One-Man Sort" in place of the Shootout class. If the riders decide collectively not to ride for the Added Money allotted to their division, the Added Money will be forfeited and reallocated to the remaining divisions.

*Masters Points will be kept separate from all other Ranch Sorting class points and there will be separate year-end awards for this division.

*Youth Points will be kept separate from all other Ranch Sorting class points and there will be separate year-end awards for this division (Junior & Senior).

*Team Penning points will be kept separate from Ranch Sorting points and there will separate year-end awards for this event.

*Points for the "DRTPA @ 5K" Series will be kept separate from the 5K Arena Jackpot Series points. The "DRTPA @ 5K" Series is a series within itself with its own year-end awards.

*RSNC points will be calculated by RSNC and posted on the official RSNC website,


*RSNC ratings will be used to determine in which division (Open, Amateur, Novice) a contestant will receive points. If not an RSNC member, contestants will be given a rating (#1 - #9) at 5K Arena based on the RSNC rating guidelines. All new riders coming in will be under a probationary rating and subject to be re-rated at any given time.

*The only exception being true Beginners, classified as those riders that have extremely limited experience with cattle, limited horsemanship skills and/or an inexperienced horse.

*5K Arena reserves the right to adjust rider ratings based on their win/loss ratio at 5K Arena events. If it is decided that a rider is due to be re-rated, the rider will be notified at least 10 days in advance of the next Jackpot. For more specific details outlining rating adjustments please refer to the RSNC Rulebook.

*Riders may be re-rated at anytime during the show season, however no one will be moved in advance of the last 2 shows prior to the Wild Card Series Finals.

*If a rider moves from one division to another as a result of being re-rated, their previously accumulated points will transfer with them to their new division.

5K Arena Divisions are grouped as follows:

- Open Division (Riders rated 5 & up).

- Amateur Division (Riders rated 3-4).

- Novice Division (Riders rated 1-2).

*Riders rated 7 & up are required to ride 1 draw ride for every picked ride.

*Riders rated 5-6 are required to ride 1 draw ride for every 2 picked rides.

-if a 5-6 rated rider opts to ride all 10 rides in a single class, he/she will be allowed to pick the 10th ride as well.

*If at any time during the show season, it becomes apparent that any Open Level riders are attempting to establish any sort of "box", that unfairly limits other riders' odds of winning, 5K Arena reserves the right to increase the number of mandatory draw rides that Open Level riders are required to ride.

*Rides will be handicapped based on the RSNC Handicap System.

- Each rating below the highest possible team number in a class will receive one additional second beyond 60 seconds to sort their cattle. Then those additional seconds will be subtracted from the team’s final time on the cattle sorted.

Class Entries

*All classes have a Mandatory Draw. Riders may pick from 1-9 rides in each class, but no matter how many they pick they are required to ride at least one draw ride. (The exception to this rule being riders rated 5 & up, whose draw requirements are outlined above.)

Alternatively, any rider has the option to ride all of their rides as draw rides. Picked rides are not a requirement.

*Riders may ride with the same partner twice in classes that have a 10 ride limit.

*All Levels HC is a "pick one/draw one" class for all riders regardless of their rating.

*Books close for the first class of each day 30 minutes prior to the advertised start time. No entries will be taken for subsequent classes once the 1st Go of the previous class is completed.

General Class Rules

*Only classes with more than 80 teams will have 3 go-rounds.

- 2nd Go, Top 20

- 3rd Go, Top 10

*Running Order for the 1st Go will be randomly drawn. 2nd Go will be run in reverse order in classes having 3 go-rounds, with the 3rd Go being randomly drawn. The 2nd Go will be randomly drawn in classes having only 2 go-rounds.

*A standard 60 second time clock will be used for all sorting & penning events. However, 5K Arena reserves to right to either extend the allowed time to 75 or 90 second clock, or shorten the allowed time to a 45 second clock in extreme circumstances.

*The time clock starts for each team after the judge’s flag is raised and the nose of the first horse crosses the foul line.

*Teams must sort/pen clean to advance to further Go-Rounds.

*Teams that pen/sort in every Go-Round place higher than those doing so in only 1 or 2 Go-Rounds, regardless of time / number of cattle.

Sorting Specific Rules

*A cow is considered sorted when the entire cow has completely crossed the foul line.

*Time will continue until all cattle are sorted in the correct order or the time limit is reached. A teams's official time will be the time recorded when the last cow sorted crosses the time line in its entirety.

*Cattle must be sorted in order. Any part of a cow crossing the foul line that is not in sequential order (including unmarked “trash” cattle) will result in a No Time.

*Any part of a previously sorted cow crossing back over the foul line will result in a No Time.

Classes Unique to 5K Arena

Reverse Rookie #11 HC - Based on the same format as the usual Rookie #11, however in this class their is a #2 cap on the gate holder and their is no cap on the sorter. The intention being to give #1 & #2 rated riders an opportunity to hold the hole with a more experienced rider in the herd. As is with the Rookie #11, if two #2 & below rated riders opt to ride together they will be allowed to swap positions as long as they announce their intention to the judge before they begin their ride. 

Team Penning Specific Rules

*5K Arena follows the “No Trash” Rule, meaning that any part of a cow crossing the foul line that is not one of the 3 cows bearing that team's assigned number, at any given time during a run, will result in a No Time.

*To call for a time, one rider must stand at the opening of the gate and raise a hand for the flag. The flag will drop when the nose of the first horse enters the pen, the assigned cattle are fully in the pen, and the rider calls for time.

*If a cow escapes as a team is calling for time, the team will be judged a "no-time. An "Escaped animal" is one with any part of the animal coming out of the opening of the pen.

*A team may call for time with only 1 or 2 assigned cattle penned. However, all other cattle must be on the cattle side of the foul line before a time can be called. Teams penning 3 head place higher than 2 or 1, regardless of the time.


*If an exceptionally bad cow blows the first 3 teams in any set, 5K Arena reserves the right to pull/replace the bad cow and give all previous teams affected in that set a re-ride. This must be brought to the judge’s attention before the 4th team rides, otherwise all previous teams forfeit their right to a re-ride.

*In the event a team is given a number that has already been used with a set of cattle, a rerun must be given IMMEDIATELY upon discovery, using the correct number within the same set.

*In case of either an official or mechanical error, a re-ride will be given immediately using the same numbered cattle.

*If an animal leaves the arena, the team can either be given a "no-time" for unnecessary roughness; can be given time on their remaining cattle; or be given an immediate re-ride depending on the judge’s decision.

*If a team observes an unfit, injured, or unidentified animal before committing to the cattle; the team must notify the judge. Once the team is committed to the cattle, no reride will be given. "Committed to the cattle" means that the team has crossed the foul line, the flag has been dropped to start the time on that run, and their cattle number has been called.

*If there is a missing number in a herd, only the team that is in the arena at the time the problem is discovered will receive a re-ride. After the herd is corrected, that team shall receive an immediate re-ride on their same numbered cattle and their time will start at zero. (Time for all other teams in such a mis-numbered herd will remain the same.)

*In the rare instance that a team rides out-of-order, their time and number of cattle will stand. No re-ride will be given for teams riding out of order. Once the problem is identified, the going forward teams will be correctly aligned, and in the case of Sorting, placed in the proper arena and follow the order as posted. All go's must be posted before the round starts.


*Roughing, including, but not limited to, unnecessary or aggressive contact, running over cattle with horses, stepping on cattle while in pursuit, running through the herd in such a manner that the cattle are knocked down, horses consistently biting the cattle and entering the pen with such force on the cattle causing them to collide with the back pen panels. A Judge’s call for “roughing” will result in immediate disqualification of the team.

*A judge has the right to disqualify any team that is more than 30 seconds late for a ride.

- Riders are still responsible for their entry fees for missed rides.

-At the judge's discretion, a substitute rider may be recruited if a team is missing a rider when called. A substitute must rated the same or less than the missing rider. Substitute riders must have an available ride in that class. The missing rider will be responsible for the entry fee, however the substitute rider will be paid their portion of any team earnings.

*Attempts to work cattle on foot will be judged a no time.

*Excessive jerking, spurring, whipping, or slapping with the intent to cause undue trauma to a horse will result in disqualification.

- Such acts anywhere on 5K Arena premises may be reported to the state veterinarian.


*Protests must be made before a team leaves the arena.

*All disputes will be made in a respectful manner. Judges reserve the right to disqualify any team for unsportsmanlike conduct if disputes are not presented appropriately.

*Any team wishing to pursue a dispute that requires the review of video footage will be required to pay a $25 deposit to do so. If the dispute is sustained, the $25 deposit will be returned; if not the $25 will be retained by 5K Arena to be utilized as Added Money for 5K Arena Youth classes.


*No visible signs of alcohol consumption are allowed.

*Everyone is a “guest” at 5K Arena and is expected to be treated as such, with courtesy and respect. 5K Arena reserves the right to remove anyone from the premises behaving in an unsportsmanlike manner at any given time, if they are behaving in such a way that it interferes with the enjoyment of other attendees.

*The 5K Arena dress code is simple – jeans, cowboy boots and nothing that your grandmother would deem as distasteful.

*By virtue of participating in any 5K Arena event, you have granted 5K Arena permission to use any photographic images featuring yourself for promotional purposes.

*Classes sanctioned by other associations, such as RSNC or DRTPA, will be conducted in accordance with their respective rule books.

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