Wade Sundell – Boxholm, Iowa ($103,309)
8-time WNFR qualifier
The last time that Wade Sundell competed at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, in 2015, he finished as the reserve world champion. Jacobs Crawley had won the world title with $3,182 more than Wade.
He is back this year after missing two years in Las Vegas and is looking for gold. Wade enters the competition in eighth place with $103,309 in regular season earnings. The native of Iowa grew up on a small farm and learned the value of hard work at an early age.
Wade joined the PRCA in 2007. Two years later he was competing for rodeo’s championship for the first of seven consecutive times. He took a break and competed with the Elite Rodeo Athletes in 2016. He started going to PRCA rodeos again in the summer of 2017 and finished the year in 33rd place.
Even though he lives near Coleman, Oklahoma now, he still competes in the Great Lakes Circuit. He qualified for their finals and punched his ticket to the RAM National Circuit Finals where he won $18,669. That put him fourth in the world standings and he was well on his way to another trip to Las Vegas.
His love of horses and the abilities of Quarter Horses came together in Sundell Performance Horses. In 2016, he made history by winning RFD-TV’s The American for the third time and got a cool $1 million bonus to invests in the business. He uses his time away from competition and his money to build a future.
A year after the beginning of a new business brought the biggest change to his life. He and Shelby Janssen welcomed a son, Rankan, into the world and he has been traveling with them all of 2018. Shelby is a barrel racer and whenever they can be at the same rodeo the same time, it is a celebration.
Last June, they lost their home and everything in it in a fire. With each win and each trophy, they are replacing memorabilia. Nothing would make them happier than to add a gold buckle to their rodeo memories and their treasured keepsakes.