After arriving at Dartmouth in 2017 as a freshman recruited to the track and field team for shotput and discus, Lily Lockhart ’21 took her potential in the weight throw and molded it into a record breaking skill — one that she keeps raising the bar for herself.
At the Beantown & Multi Challenge last weekend, threw 19.50m in the weight throw to break her own previous record of 19.07 — and before that, Amelia Ali ’19’s record of 18.52m. At the time, that throw was good for ninth in the NCAA, and she currently sits in 32nd. Lockhart is one of 14 women in Dartmouth’s history to throw the discus over 42.00m and one of 14 women in Dartmouth history to throw the hammer over 44.50m.
She is one of those all-around superstars, leading her team by example and inspiring her teammates to work hard. Since the beginning of this year’s indoor season, Lockhart has already broken a new record, and she doesn’t plan on stopping there.
“I knew in the back of my mind that I wanted to be on the record board.” Lockhart says. “We went to practice every day and we worked hard and eventually broke it by almost a meter, but hope to break it by more than that also.”
Lockhart said she took a gap year during the pandemic, during which she spent time working on her technique for the weight throw. According to throws coach Jeff Forino, she was recruited as a discus thrower, and had never competed in the weight or hammer throw until she got to Dartmouth.
Though Forino has coached many talented athletes throughout his career, his sentiments about Lockhart as a recruit were nothing out of the ordinary.
“The thing that makes her awesome is her development,” Forino says. “She didn’t just come from high school as this weight thrower that was top in the nation — she had never touched it before.”
Lockhart is also forthright about the challenges she faces while existing as both a student and an athlete on Dartmouth’s campus. Throwers of either gender need to generate a lot of force in order to throw weights competitively, which often mandates being a bigger size.
“It was sort of difficult to come into college as a freshman and realize that my body has to be a certain size to succeed at this,” Lockhart says. “It took a lot of talking with my coach and my nutritionist to understand that that is where I needed to be.”
Lockhart highlighted the challenge of balancing how you want your body to look with how you want your body to perform as an athlete.
“I had to get used to really fueling my body as much as possible and not letting that bother me,” Lockhart says.
Lockhart sees practice as “one of the best parts of the day,” as a lot of her close friends and mentors have come from the track and field team. Lockhart has embraced her role as a leader on the team, leaning into her ability to help out her younger teammates navigate both collegiate track and field and Dartmouth as a whole.
“She’s always had that charisma where people wanted to follow her,” Forino says. “She’s always had that leadership quality.”
But her positive impact on others goes beyond inspiring them to work hard and dedicate themselves to their sport. Lockhart’s team admires her not only for her athletic ability, but also for the kind of person she is.
“Lily is just a super fun person to be around,” teammate Tennison Brady-Steen ’23 said. “She’s a very good role model.”
Next fall, Lockhart will attend the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. The environmental studies major will also have one season of outdoor eligibility to use in graduate school.