In her first year actively competing in the WPRA/PRCA Breakaway Roping, Two-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo barrel racing qualifier Taylor Hanchey—formerly Jacob, until marrying World Champion Calf Roper Shane Hanchey this April—punched her ticket to compete at the second-ever National Finals of Breakaway Roping, to be held at The Orleans in December of 2021, and is the first female to qualify in two Pro Rodeo events.
“Shane told me today, ‘Well, you’re the last first-time qualifier in both events. You’re the last one. There will never be another first-time one,’” Hanchey said. “It’s cool, period. I would like it to be in the Thomas & Mack. To me, that’s the NFR. I wish we were a part of that, and I would like to think that one day we will be. I’m happy to pay my dues until our time does come.”
The Top 15 wasn’t set in stone until after Hanchey and Hope Thompson, who finished $138.17 behind Taylor, backed in the box at the Stockyard Pro Rodeo in Fort Worth in the morning slack on Sept. 30. Unfortunately, both Hanchey and Thompson missed their calves, handing Hanchey the NFBR qualification.
“It was not a good display of roping on both parts,” Hanchey said.
What initially moved Hanchey from 28th to 15th in the World Standings was her $4,944 weekend at the California Rodeo Salinas Tour Finale after placing in the rounds and the average.
“After I roped in Salinas, I thought that it was pretty much over,” she said. “I didn’t think I had a chance to make it after Salinas. When I realized that I did still have a chance it was nice. Shane has been nervous since Salinas. I figured it’s going to be what it’s going to be.”
Originally, Hanchey, 31, hadn’t planned on competing at the Tour Finale, but she did enter herself and hauling partner Cheyanne Guillory in the Canby (Oregon) Rodeo, where Hanchey earned enough points to qualify for the Tour Finale.
“At Caldwell (Idaho) the Monday before Canby, I was talking to Jordan Jo Fabrizio about the Tour standings. I wasn’t even worried about them, but Cheyanne was close in the Tour standings, so she had to go to Canby. That was one of the Tour rodeos that I did really well at that helped me get into Salinas.”
Hanchey was mounted out all summer on Shane’s string of calf horses, which Hanchey felt was a “huge advantage.”
“I rode Pam, his mare, the majority of the time this summer. I got on Si, who was the horse of the year in 2017, at Salinas. He’s really the real MVP because we showed up over there and we didn’t think we had a chance and we left there with a chance. I also rode his other horse, Seven, at rodeos down in Texas. They are all exceptional.”
As the season winds down, Hanchey is excited to be loading up her cowgirl gear to compete for a Breakaway Roping World Title and watch Shane compete for what could be his second World Title.
“I’ve been in the rodeo, and I’ve been in the stands, and it is so much more work to be in the stands. I’ve tried to do the wife-part and look the part—getting all the clothes and outfits. The girls should get more kudos for that because that takes a lot of work and a lot of try. I would much rather be in my cowgirl outfit.”