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Battle in the Saddle


By Nancy Brannon

Safe Harbor’s Battle in the Saddle barrel race was back at the Expo Center in Tunica, Mississippi January 19-21, 2018, with a full schedule all three days. Friday’s entries neared 240, with more on Saturday at just under 400, and Sunday’s entries were 280. The show totaled just over 900 runs for the weekend, and raised $10,000 for Safe Harbor, with the help of sponsors and contestants.

Puhl’s Photography was the official photographer for the show. There were 15 vendors lining the mezzanine, with plenty to buy – from gloves to jewelry, shirts, saddles, shoes, tack, and horse health care products.

There were plenty of additional activities and opportunities for prizes at the show in addition to barrel racing. There was a 50/50 raffle, in which the winner got 50% of the purse and Safe Harbor got the other 50%. Folks could buy a chance on a saddle, donated by JHA (Just Horsin’ Around) Saddle and Tack of Jackson, Missouri, for only $5. Lila Montgomery was the winner of a very nice JHA saddle! There were drawings for dinner at Blue & White Restaurant, gift cards from Frontier Ranch Supply and Cowboy Corner, and one free stall for the weekend, compliments of Safe Harbor, won by Nikki Moore.

The Kids Foot Race attracted a lot of entries, and folks had a lot of fun, as parents snapped plenty of photos of the cute children. Each contestant got a goodie bag for participating.

The top five riders received some very nice prizes, as well as money, for their placings. In Open, first place winners got a Yeti cooler and a buckle; second place won a pair of Usher Brand Silver & Saddlery award stirrups; third place got a Best Ever saddle pad; fourth won a pair of Back On Track wraps; and fifth place got a wither strap by Chica Belles.

The Young Guns won some nice prizes, too, in addition to money for their placings. First place received a Best Ever saddle pad and an award statue; second place received a belt buckle; third place got a breast collar; fourth got a halter; and fifth received an Award back pack.

Friday’s Young Guns winner was Brentley Dowdy, from Union City, Tenn., on FA Rockin Easy with a time of 15.021. Abi DePriest, of Tenaha, Tex., won both Saturday’s and Sunday’s Young Guns on Hez Aces Maverick with a time of 15.269 on Saturday and 15.085 on Sunday.

That made Abi DePriest the weekend’s Young Guns Average winner, with an average time of 15.177.

Megan Jamerson, of Gallatin, Tenn., on Deep Laughing, won Friday’s Adult Sidepot with a time of 14.544 and the Sunday Adult Sidepot with a time of 14.657 seconds.

Bentley Dowdy, of Union City, Tenn. won Saturday’s Youth Sidepot on FA Rockin Easy with a time of 14.879.

In Open, McKenzie Morgan, of Maryville, Tenn., won Friday’s 1D and the Youth Sidepot on In Firewaters Honor in 14.532 seconds, and Sunday’s 1D in 14.464 seconds. Bert Skimehorn won Saturday’s 1D and Adult Sidepot on Shez Truly Oldtimes with a time of 14.552.

That put McKenzie Morgan as the weekend’s Open 1D Average winner, with an average time of 14.498.

Full results of the show are available at

Find more information about the show at: and on facebook at Battle in The Saddle, and about Safe Harbor at: on facebook at Safe Harbor of Memphis. Safe Harbor of Memphis is located at 3630 Jackson Ave., Memphis, TN 38108.

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