The Elite Rodeo Athletes pulled into Dallas,Texas, November 13, 2016, for the final night of competition inside the American Airlines Center for the ERA World Championships. From spoilers to world leaders holding tight to their top positions, the event was full of exciting runs and top-shelf competition.
Featuring a $1 million payout the inaugural event showcased 87 rodeo athletes competing for their share of the rich pie. Stakes were high as the top 15 athletes in barrel racing, team roping, tie down roping, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, bareback riding and bull riding battled it out for top honors.
In the barrel racing it was fierce race for the world championship with the standings changing throughout the three-day event, but with Lisa Lockhart holding tight to her world championship lead. She came into the finals sitting No. 1 – having basically dominated the ERA Premier Tour the entire year.
Friday night the Oelrichs, South Dakota, cowgirl turned in a 13.06 for a third place paycheck collecting 400 points. Then, she and her great mount An Oakie With Cash took second place on Saturday with a 13.106 collecting 500 points.
“We hadn’t been anywhere in awhile and you never know what to expect when you’re trying to coming back – it’s the end of the season, we’ve been home, but he worked great the first night and last night he felt even sharper,” Lockhart said of her finals week. “Tonight to be the last barrel racer (to run) and I knew there were some fast times… it’s always in the back of your mind when you have an average that you need to try to stay safe. You always want to win first, but you have this flood of emotions.”
Going into the Sunday’s last round she was atop the leaderboard with 3,425 points, with a chance to be knocked from her leading spot. However, Lisa and “Louie” turned in another consistent time of 13.321 to pick up third place in the average ultimately garnering her a big enough lead to secure her spot atop the leaderboard.
“I thought [Louie] did his job. I thought we were too long today to be honest,” she said with a laugh, “so it really worried me when we didn’t have the run I wanted to have and I probably played it too safe, but it is what it is and I couldn’t be more happy. It’s just part of the game and you never know what’s going to happen. The clock says it all.”
An Oakie With Cash is by Beibers Oakie out of Lady Kaweah Cash and has led Lockhart to The American championship twice, Women’s Professional Rodeo Association reserve world championship and now her very first world title.
“To be apart of something from the very beginning and there have been a lot of sacrifices made by a lot of people and it’s grueling, but it makes it so much more satisfying in the end. It’s been amazing. It’s pretty cool,” said an emotional Lockhart as she described what her first world championship means to her. “It’s always fun to be apart of the race regardless of what the outcome is, but it’s exciting when it comes down to the last day and it’s exciting for the fans.”
Mowry Tops Aggregate
The standout team in the barrel racing at the ERA World Championshps was Kassie Mowry riding Firewatermakemehappy. The duo from Dublin, Texas, dominated the finals event winning all three rounds and ultimately claiming the aggregate title.
Mowry came from behind to take the win as a Last Chance qualifier from the November 9, event and absolutely thrilled the crowd and setting records inside the American Airlines Center.
On Sunday’s last round Mowry entered the arena with what can only be described as determination portrayed across her face. She mentioned the night prior, she wasn’t going to change a thing in her preparation – even what she ate for lunch. The prep paid off in a big way as she and “Junior” turned in a smoking fast 12.793 the American Airlines arena record.
Firewatermakemehappy is by Firewaterontherocks out of Junior Country Girl owned my Martha and Jeff Smith. Junior was a champion futurity horse as a 4-year-old and now he’s earning his stripes as a rodeo mount.
“I am just beyond ecstatic. I really had no idea that he (Mowry’s horse “Firewatermakehappy”) would come out like he did – I just thought this would be a really good learning experience. I am just thrilled that he is taking it in and getting stronger even at the end … just thrilled.”
Third Round Results
Place, Back No., Contestant, Money Earned, Time, Points
ERA World Championship Aggregate
Place, Contestant, Money Earned, Average Time, Points
Race to the ERA World Championship
Place, Contestant, Points
1, Lisa Lockhart, 4,025
2, Kassidy Dennison, 3,562.5
3, Kassie Mowry, 2,992
4, Fallon Taylor, 2,787.5
5, Britany Diaz, 2,687.5
6, Ashley Schafer, 2,625
7, Chayni Chamberlain, 2,362.5
8, Sarah McDonald, 2,187.5
9, Callie duPerier-Apffel, 1,812.5
10, Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 1,637.5
11, Taylor Jacob, 1,475
12, Charmayne James, 1,087.5
13, Jennifer Kalafatic, 517.5
14, Shelley Morgan, 444
15, Makenzie Mays, 100