Age is just a number and success just another page in the storied book of Montana native Lisa Lockhart. She’ll turn 55 on Friday and still rides like she’s in the prime of her barrel racing career.
Lockhart turned in another career go-round Saturday night during Round 3 at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, this time aboard Rosa. She likely would have earned the Round 1 gold buckle, as well, if not for clipping the third barrel for a penalty.
“I thought my run the first night, she felt really good," Lockhart told the NFR media after Saturday's win. "We barely got the third barrel, and it’s been tight every trip. I really had to stay focused on how I was going to try and ride her (Saturday), so that was just part of the game plan.”
Lockhart challenged for another round victory on Tuesday, placing second in a time of 17.07 seconds. But it drew another paycheck of almost $21,000 and bumped her to No. 4 in pro rodeo's latest world standings.
Living in Oelrichs, South Dakota, Lockhart has well over $100,000 to date in what’s been a lean professional rodeo season for everybody. She’s approaching the $3 million mark in career earnings.
It’s hard to tell where you might run into her along the dusty trail, but the surefire spot would be a gold buckle ceremony at some point during the NFR. Just pick a season. After all, she’s twice won the NFR average (2014 and 2016), which goes to competitors who earn the most money in their event during this 10-night Super Bowl of rodeo.
“Anytime you can be in any winner’s circle, let alone here at the NFR, it’s hard to explain. It’s awesome,” she said.
Lockhart knows as well as anybody. She has never won the elusive world title, but, wow, has she been close. Multiple times, it’s come down to the final round in 14 seasons of qualifying for the NFR.
After turning heads for years with Louis (17-year-old buckskin gelding), the girl who was born in Wolf Point and started riding a pony at age 6 is now teaming up with speedy and talented Rosa, a 10-year-old buckskin mare.
“Rosa is very fast, she’s extremely fast," Lockhart said after her third-round win. "She is just very reactive to everything, and so timing is impeccable, so it’s very hard as a rider sometimes to have that timing and to time everything perfectly. I think that’s the most difficult part, but she loves her job and can run so fast. It’s an absolute blast.”