Breakaway roping is a rodeo event that features a calf and one mounted cowgirl.
The breakaway roper is behind a taut rope fastened with an easily broken string which is fastened to the rope on the calf. When the roper is ready she calls for the calf and the chute man trips a lever opening the doors. The suddenly freed calf breaks out running. When the calf reaches the end of his rope, it pops off and simultaneously releases the barrier for the roper. The roper must throw the rope in a loop around the calf’s neck.
Once the rope is around the calf’s neck, the roper signals the horse to stop suddenly. The rope is tied to the saddle horn with a string. When the calf hits the end of the rope, the rope is pulled tight and the string breaks. The breaking of the string marks the end of the run. The fastest run wins.