Well, I got the new Smith Brothers catalog and was looking at all the pictures last night when I noticed something that struck me as very odd: it seemed that a number of the barrel racers in the pictures had rubber bands over the heel of their boot, running under the stirrup, then over the toe of their boot. Why on earth do they put rubber bands over their feet? My husband's suggestion was that it helps hold their foot down in the stirrup during the turns, but in one of the pics the girl lost her stirrup and the rubber was just hanging out, wrapped around the stirrup. I felt his idea was pretty plausible but I'm still reallllly curious to find out the "real" answer. Any help?