Wyatt Hansen is a sophomore at Oakdale Charter High School. He is a normal teenager who attends classes, has homework and daily chores. What separates Hansen from other high school kids his age is that he is already an established rodeo star. Hansen competes in calf roping and team roping.
Hansen began competing in high school rodeo in 2013, his freshman year, and was highly successful. His sophomore season took off to new heights when he reached the 2014 PRCA National Finals in Las Vegas, Nevada this past December.
Hansen competed in several local high school events and even traveled out of state to compete in the sport which he loves.
“I won a few small jackpots locally this past year, I won $800 in Chowchilla, but took home most of my earnings in Las Vegas. I took home about $10,000 that weekend. I put some of the money away for school and then I bought more horses with some of it too,” said Hansen about his earnings.
Hansen has an advantage in the sport as his parents were on the pro rodeo circuit and bestowed Hansen with knowledge and wisdom at an early age.
“My mom, Kelleigh Hansen was a barrel racer and my dad was a PRCA circuit calf roping champion. My dad has lived the rodeo life his whole life. He took the time to teach me how to ride and rope at very young age, as far back as I can remember to be honest,” Hansen said. “It’s turned into a lifestyle for me. I have the full support of my family, my grandparents and parents both support me, and that’s important to have when you’re in this industry. This is something I will always do.”
Hansen also shined on the baseball diamond prior to doing rodeo full time. He played on a travel team where he was coached by OHS coach Nate Gregory.
“Baseball was fun and I really enjoy it, but rodeo is the number one sport in my life. This is what I truly want to do,” Hansen said.
Traveling is a major part of the sport. Hansen and his family have put many miles in this year, and he is grateful to have his family with him when he does hit the road.
“The wear and tear of traveling is the tough part. It puts a lot of miles on your truck or car, it takes its toll on the horses, as well as yourself. I am blessed to have my family with me every mile, because it would make this a lot harder on me.”