GREELEY, Colo. – Steer wrestler Olin Hannum has been to ProRodeo’s pinnacle of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo twice.
On Sunday, the Malad, Idaho, cowboy added a RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo championship to his résumé.
Hannum clocked a 3.7-second run in the four-man, sudden-death finals to capture the coveted title at Island Grove Regional Park.
“I made the finals at (the RAM NCFR) in Kissimmee (Fla.), and I broke the barrier and didn’t do as well as I wanted to,” said Hannum, 42. “This year I didn’t win much money but did well right at the end.”
During the four-day RAM NCFR, Hannum earned $6,508, including $4,527 for the finals win.
Hannum, who reached the NFR in 2011 and 2017, was the first cowboy to compete in the finals, and he had a simple approach. He finished in a tie for third in the eight-man semifinals with Will Lummus, as each clocked 4.7-second runs.
“I just wanted to get a good start and make the best run I could,” Hannum said. “Everybody there (in the final four) were really good bulldoggers and had really good horsepower. I thought some guys were going to need to stub their toes for me to have a chance.”
Stetson Jorgensen finished second with a 4.3-second run, followed by Blake Knowles (4.4) and Lummus (13.6), who broke the barrier.
Hannum rode his horse, Maverick, 15.
“This win feels just like when I made the NFR,” said Hannum, who competes in the Wilderness Circuit. “I have not been rodeoing a lot. This has been my dream staying circuit rodeoing and be able to come here and have a really good circuit finals. I was really disappointed because I thought we weren’t going to be able to have it (because of the COVID-19 pandemic). I feel really blessed that they were able to put it on and come here to Greeley.”
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the RAM NCFR, originally scheduled to take place in Kissimmee, Fla., in April, was moved to Greeley.
Hannum comes from a storied rodeo family. His late father, Jack, was a five-time qualifier for the Wrangler NFR, once in tie-down roping (1977) and four times in steer wrestling (1978-80, 1983). He also served as a PRCA administrator.
Olin’s late mother, Lynn, twice worked the NFR as a timer. Olin’s younger brother, Jake, qualified for the Wrangler NFR in 2007 as a tie-down roper.
Now, Olin is scaling back his rodeo schedule, but he has another saddle to add to his collection.
“I have three children, (daughters) Cheznie, 8, Kennedy, 6, and Jackson, 3, and they were here this week,” Olin said. “I just wanted to be around closer to my family and children, and I have a cabinet business (Arrowhead Cabinets) and want to keep it going.”
In addition to cash, the RAM NCFR champions won a $20,000 RAM voucher, Cactus Saddle, a Montana Silversmiths buckle, a Polaris Ranger, a pair of Justin boots and an OtterBox cooler.
Askey wins $21,049
Bull rider Jeff Askey didn’t know he made the only qualified ride during the eight-man semifinals of the RAM NCFR on Sunday until he was walking to his interview with the Cowboy Channel.
His 88-point ride on Brookman Rodeo’s Hot Axe in the semifinals was worth $11,317, and winning the final round by a single point with 89.5 points on Andrews Rodeo’s Chupacabra helped push his RAM NCFR total to $21,049.
Askey placed third in the first round with an 85-point ride, which kept him in the running for the semifinals when only three bull riders made qualified rounds in the second round. Askey said he’s feeling confident about qualifying for his third Wrangler NFR as he heads to the Xtreme Bulls Finale in Nephi, Utah, Sept. 19.
His biggest payday of the 2020 season courtesy the RAM NCFR and the stipend for a RAM pickup couldn’t have come at a better time since his van was giving him trouble, taking several minutes to get the engine started.
“That troubled van doesn’t look like it’ll be much trouble anymore,” Askey laughed. “It can be dust one day and diamonds the next. It’s easy to say no and cut corners when it’s a rough year like we’ve had, but they (the committee and sponsors) didn’t do that. They’ve stepped up, and we all really appreciate it.”
Courtesy of PRCA