There’s a new O’Flynn on the rise, and he is looking to continue in his brother’s foot steps.
Eric O’Flynn, 17, is the brother of renowned Quesnel bull rider Matt O’Flynn, who just retired at the end of last year’s BCRA season.
O’Flynn has just graduated high school, and after a pair of top-two finishes in a row, he finally clinched his first bullriding victory on the BCRA rodeo tour.
Riding Holy Roller, he racked up 83 points for a first-place finish, besting the 22 other riders in the competition and taking home $2,300 for his efforts.
“I just put all my drills together and whooped another one down, so I’m on a winning streak I guess,” he says cheekily.
O’Flynn says he and his buddies, Clay and Elijah Gordon and Isaac Janzen, have been practising consistently for quite some time.
“We’ve got this electrical barrel, and we just drill moves for hours until out minds and our muscle memory all come together,” he says.
“Once you drill enough you get in a positive mind frame and you think ‘I can win everything! I’m the best!’ and next thing you know, you are,” he says trying to hold back a chuckle.
The confidence is contagious.
Clay Gordon and Isaac Janzen sit at first and second place in this year’s Jr. Steer Riding rankings, and O’Flynn and Elijah Gordon are second and sixth in bull riding.
Although O’Flynn’s got a way to go before catching this season’s leader Isaac Mack from Bella Coola, he still thinks a couple good rides are all that separates him from the title.
“Hopefully I take over first before the end of the year,” he says.
“There’s a couple more [rodeos] left, so I think I’ve got a chance.”
The young rider is sitting on $4,000 in winnings this season.
A lot of it goes towards travelling across the province, buying food and paying for entry fees, but he is loving the lifestyle.
“Oh yeah, it’s so much fun being young and living my best life!” he said. “The adrenaline and the love for the sport, the friends. It’s such a great time.”