Horse Act Leaping to Mesquite Rodeo

One Arm Bandit & Company shows off horse tricks

By Tammy Mutasa
|  Friday, Jul 6, 2012  |  Updated 8:08 PM CDT
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The Mesquite Rodeo will showcase the One-Arm-Bandit Company this weekend which is founded by a cowboy with one arm.

Tammy Mutasa, NBC 5 Mesquite Reporter

The Mesquite Rodeo will showcase the One-Arm-Bandit Company this weekend which is founded by a cowboy with one arm.

This weekend at the rodeo, some horses are getting ready to gallop to places they've never been before.

The wild horses in the One Arm Bandit & Company are trained to reach new heights as they leap onto an 11-foot trailer.

"It's not every day you see an animal defy his own instincts and jump up as high as they do," said Lynn Payne, a cowboy in the company originally founded by his father, John Payne.

It's not just a one-trick pony show for Lynn Payne.

"Not very many people can get a horse on top of a horse trailer, for one," he said.

It takes at least two years for Payne and the company to train the horses. They take baby steps as they vary the jump height until the horses can reach the top of the trailer.

"You have a lot of trust with your animal, and the animal has to have trust in you too," Payne said.

Payne's father started the show 25 years ago in Oklahoma. Since then, they have traveled around the world with the horses. They also use wild buffaloes, steers and bulls in their shows.

"It just brings chills to your heart," said Alan Moorehead, Mesquite Pro Rodeo announcer.

Payne's father is known as the One Arm Bandit after he lost his arm in an electrical accident.

"He can do anything that anyone else can do -- and probably even better," Payne said.

This is the first time the horse act will be at the rodeo this weekend, and expectations are already high.

"It's danger and, along with a thrilling act, to where it's planned out and you know what's supposed to happen but, in rodeo, anything can happen," Moorehead said.

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