LAS VEGAS – Every step of his magical 2015 ProRodeo season has been a learning experience for bareback rider Orin Larsen.
The education continued over the 10-day Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. This was ProRodeo’s grand championship, and the Inglis, Manitoba, cowboy earned the right to be among the field by finishing amid the top 15 in the world standings through the course of the long season.
“It’s definitely a finals I’ll remember, especially since it’s my first one,” said Larsen, who joined his brother, saddle bronc rider Tyrel Larsen, as the first Manitoba cowboys compete at the NFR. “It’s a bittersweet finals for me, but I’m very blessed and very fortunate to be part of this great production.”
Larsen finished the year 12th in the world standings with $114,156, with nearly $23,000 coming over the course of 10 days in Sin City. Larsen placed in just three go-round but ended the season on a high note with an 81-point ride on Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Fancy Free, a horse that has been selected to the NFR 11 times.
It was a solid way to push toward the 2016 ProRodeo season.
“I can’t complain,” said Larsen, who attended the College of Southern Idaho and Oklahoma Panhandle State University on rodeo scholarships; he won college titles at both institutions. “There’s no better group of guys to be in the locker room with. They’re all world-class people, and they’re all my best friends.”
Along the way, the learning process continued. It’s something he hopes to bring back to Las Vegas with him.
“(I need) to be patient, and your time will come,” he said. “It might take nine or 10 rounds for it all to click, but the most important thing is to be patient and enjoy it.
“I think (the NFR) went pretty good. I know I could’ve done better on my part. For my first one, just to make it (to the finals) is good enough for me. But next year, you ain’t seen the tip of the iceberg.”