By Tracy Renck/for ProRodeo.com
GUTHRIE, OKLA. – This is a memory steer wrestler Will Lummus is going to savor for a very long time.
In first run of his inaugural appearance at the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo, Lummus walked away a winner.
The West Point., Miss., cowboy clocked a 4.1-second time to win the first round of the $530,503 Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo at the historic Lazy E Arena.
“I knew I had to get a good start,” Lummus, 21, said. “Trevor Knowles and Nick Guy made great runs at 4.2 seconds. My hazer, Tyler Pearson, stepped him to me and I had a good draw and I was able to make it work.”
The second round begins tonight at 7:30 (CT).
For his effort, Lummus pocketed $4,525 in winnings. It is an especially good paycheck for Lummus considering he is a senior at the University of Tennessee-Martin, and is scheduled to graduate in August with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science and wellness.
“This also was my first year making the (Ram) Southeastern Circuit Finals,” Lummus said. “I have always been so busy with school I’ve never been able to go to enough rodeos to make the circuit finals. After I graduate, I have applied to attend PTA (Physical Therapist Assistant) school at Itawamba Community College in Tupelo (Miss.). Hopefully, I will get accepted there and that will be two more years, and then after those two years, I can start rodeoing fulltime.”
Lummus admitted capturing the first-round victory helped him validate his own talent.
“I know all these guys here,” the 6-foot-2, 250-pound Lummus said. “I’ve seen them and rodeoed with them. Even though I can’t go fulltime I still get to go to the bigger rodeos and I get to see them and I know them. But to be honest with you, being 4.1 feels good. It just lets me know that I can compete at this level.”
Despite his victory, Lummus isn’t changing his mind set for the rest of the RNCFR which concludes Saturday.
“I just have to be solid and keep hitting my start, and obviously keep drawing good,” Lummus said. “There’s not many bad ones in there and as long as I keep hitting my start and stay sharp we will be good.”
He is trying to become the first Southeastern Circuit steer wrestler to win the RNCFR since Clay Perry in 2005.
Other first-round winners were bareback rider Joe Gunderson (84 points on Rafter H Rodeo’s Storm Cloud), tie-down roper Josh Peek (8.1 seconds), team ropers Paul Bird and John Robertson (4.9 seconds), saddle bronc rider Cody Wright (83 points on Sutton Rodeo’s Real McCoy), bull rider Aaron Pass (88 points on Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Spec) and barrel racer June Holeman (16.97 seconds).
Peek, Wright, Pass and the team roping pair of Bird and Robertson all registered their winning times and scores on Thursday night.
“I didn’t know that horse,” said Wright about Real McCoy which was his re-ride horse. “He felt really good. He jumped in the air and hung and let you spur at him.”
Courtesy of PRCA