Outlaw said he’s won like this in the past, but never with this much on the line and especially after undergoing back to back shoulder surgeries, missing six months, becoming a father for the second time and capping off his most win by exchanging wedding vows.
“As soon as I got released I got on probably 15 bulls in a matter of two weeks,” Outlaw said. “I pushed myself and this is what I expected from myself.”
He also finished second at an event in Deadwood, South Dakota, and sixth in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.
Having had the time off, it’s only like riding in February for Outlaw, while everyone else has been going hard down the road since the Finals at the end of last October.
Outlaw is rested and refreshed, hungry and determined.
More importantly, the 23-year-old from Hamburg, Arkansas, knows he can ride any bull he draws.
Outlaw showed promise and an ability to win from the first time he debuted at a PBR event. In early 2012, he won the third elite PBR event he competed in when he went 2-for-2 in Houston at Reliant Stadium.
The Monster Energy newcomer is now in his fifth season as a pro and now has the experience and the maturity coupled with the ability he’s displayed as a young gun in what is only the beginning of his window of opportunity in the pursuit to win a world title.
Now he has the experience of being the short rounds and knows firsthand the difference between finishing in the Top 10 to 15 riders and winning or being the Top 5 is converting those on those opportunities.
That’s what he’s been doing this summer—climbing in the chute, taking his wrap, nodding and converting 8-seconds later.
“It’s not worrying about it being a short round and just being another bull and finishing the job,” said Outlaw, who’s leaving it up everyone else champion his renewed confidence. “I know I have the potential to win and I know that if you’re going to win then you have to ride them all.”
His plan is to compete in Canada and some of the northern states along the border – like Minnesota – and will be at an event in Calgary on July 5, 6 and 7. He plans to stay in Calgary for the opening rounds of the annual Stampede. Pool A starts July 8 and Pool B starts on the 12th, so if anyone doesn’t make it up north or draws out ahead of time, Outlaw hopes to be there for the opportunity to win $100,000.
And despite not competing until early May, Outlaw ought to be ranked in the Top 35 when the elite televised PBR tour resumes in mid-August.
“That is my plan and that’s what I want,” said Outlaw, who vowed not to worry about where he’s at in the world standings until the end of the season. “I ain’t even looked. I ain’t worried about it.”