Top Performer: Landry Haugen

STURGIS, S.D. –  The National High School Finals Rodeo is set to take place July 17-23 in Gillette, Wyoming.

Around 1,500 contestants from across the country will be competing for a national title.

One of those athletes is Landry Haugen from Sturgis who just qualified for the world’s largest rodeo for the third year in a row.

But believe it or not, Haugen has already won a world title and she’s only 17.

Landry Haugen literally grew up on the back of a horse. 

She started competing in rodeos when she was just six-years old.

“I was on a horse obviously since I was a baby,” said Landry Haugen. “But I started actually riding when I was three or four. I had a little pony named “Mary Legs” and I would lope her around the barrels and stuff. Obviously I just continuously got more aggressive I guess would be the word.”  

Rodeo has been a big part of Landry’s life.

In fact, it’s fair to say that Landry comes from a rodeo family.

“My parents both did professional rodeo,” said Landry Haugen. “Both my grandparents rodeoed. Butch Webb is my grandfather. He had a huge horse ranch in Isabel, South Dakota. My grandma Renee had some amazing horses and my mom did everything. She held the record at the college finals in the goat tying. She’s roped. It’s a part of who I am absolutely.”  

A senior at Sturgis High School, Landry has already won five state high school rodeo titles.

But she actually clinched her first world title when she was 14-years old.

Landry captured the world championship in goat tying at the 2019 National Little Britches Rodeo Association Junior Finals.

Landry said her horses have always been big part of her success.

“I’m exhausted after a rodeo for sure because by barrel horses, even more than a breakaway horse, you’re icing them and taking care of them,” added Landry Haugen. “They eat better than I do. They’re spoiled but I wouldn’t have it any other way.” 

Landry is now preparing to compete at the National High School Finals Rodeo for the third year in a row.

She will represent South Dakota in the barrel racing, girl’s cutting and the reined cow horse event.

While she’s excited about the chance to win a title, Landry enjoys the relationships that rodeo creates.

But overall, she just loves competing.

“I’ve told my parents that I would put my heart and soul into tennis if it was tennis,” said Landry Haugen. “But it just so happens that I love rodeo. And like I mentioned before, the animals have a huge part in it. I care about my animals more than about anything.”  

As Landry focuses on winning a national title, she hopes to follow in her parents footsteps after high school and continue her rodeo career.

“It more than any other sport gives you the unique opportunity to do it after high school at a competitive level,” said Landry Haugen. “That’s not to say I won’t go in and get a masters or bachelors or a PhD in something and then come back to it. But it will completely be a part of my life.”  

Congratulations to Landry Haugen on being named a News Center 1 Top Performer.

Categories: ConnectCenter1-Ag, High School, Sports, Top Performer