Convicts have been leaving their cells in the prisons of Texas to try to ride bucking broncos, rope wild steers or milk wild cows, as the crowds roar and the band plays.
TV PAN FROM Horses to prisoners preparing harnesses
Audience of prisoners taking places behind wire
CU Guard watches as guests arrive (2 shots)
LV Prisoners' steers
SV & LV Crowd watch as prisoners try to saddle broncs (3 shots)
SV Women prisoners roping heifers
SV Prisoner tries to ride bucking bronco and fails
SV Another prisoner falls off
SV Another rider falls off
SV Other fallers (2 shots)
SV Teams trying to catch cows to milk them
Initials BB/1942 RS/MR/BB/1957
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Convicts have been leaving their cells in the prisons of Texas to try to ride bucking broncos, rope wild steers or milk wild cows, as the crowds roar and the band plays.
For every October in Huntsville, Texas, there is held one of the United States' strangest rodeos -- the Texas Prison Rodeo.
The contestants wear prison garb and many of the audience cheer from inside wire enclosures.
But for men confined for long sentences, the rodeo is an eagerly awaited event. Apart from the relief from monotony, the top riders can earn a couple of hundred dollars (about GBP 80), for the proceeds go the prisoners.
The rodeo has been held for the last 42 years on each Sunday in October and as many as 100,000 people come from outside the prison walls each year to see it.
SYNOPSIS: In Texas -- preparations for one of the United States' most unusual rodeos.
The contestants wear the same striped uniforms and large sections of the audience watch form wire enclosures. It's the Texan Prison Rodeo held at Huntsville north of Houston.
The competition is so keen that every year tens of thousands come from outside the prison walls to watch the spectacle.
The convicts of Texas have been competing in the traditional events of the Old West for the past forty two years.
What these modern day cowboys lack in experience they make up for with enthusiasm. But there are always bruises and broken bones.
Women prisoners become cowgirls -- and try to rope wild calves. They also ride donkeys around the arena.
But the rough and tumble events are for man only.
Many prisoners have an extremely rough ride on the bucking broncos.
In spite of the danger convicts say the rodeo is something they look forward to all year.
Even hitting the dust is welcome relief from the boredom of prison life
For those who manage to catch the wild ??? and milk them or stay in the saddle there are cash prizes. For all proceeds go to the prisoners.