Barrel Racing Tack - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 07-20-2019, 10:27 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2019
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Barrel Racing Tack

I’m looking to start my 7 y/o QH on barrels and I just wanted to know exactly what I need to get for her in terms of tack.
morganeh1234 is offline  
post #2 of 5 Old 07-20-2019, 01:36 PM
Join Date: Jul 2015
Location: Western Massachusetts
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I think you need a saddle and bridle. Probably a breastplate. I'm serious -- is there required tack of any sort?

Short horse lover
Avna is offline  
post #3 of 5 Old 07-20-2019, 03:04 PM
Join Date: May 2018
Location: MO
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No special tack is needed to start out except for leg protection if your horse is prone to interference. As you get faster, a nice barrel saddle to keep you more secure in your seat and a wither strap to keep your breast collar from interfering with shoulder movement. Reins are a personal preference. They make knotted barrel reins if you need help remembering where your hands go. Other people use unknotted or roper reins. Split reins just have too much extra length to get in the way. Shin guards help protect from hitting a barrel.
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post #4 of 5 Old 07-20-2019, 05:19 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Jun 2017
Location: middle of nowhere
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Roper/gaming reins are usually only for competition. You will likely still school in long, split reins.

You need a saddle and bridle and possibly a breastcollar. Boots for the horse's forelegs once you start adding some speed, but if you're just starting, that's a long way off, too. That's pretty much it. All the rest is primarily bling and glitz that isn't really required. The big bits, tie-downs, and all the other trappings of your 'typical barrel racer' aren't really necessary, especially for someone just starting out.
SilverMaple is offline  
post #5 of 5 Old 07-20-2019, 08:44 PM
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: Lansing, Michigan
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I would prioritize a good fitting saddle, a quality pad, a bridle set-up that works well for you and your horse. If you do the training slow and correct, there is no reason you can't run her/him in a plain snaffle. I personally prefer to run in my hackamore for casual shows, and when I was really competitive, I would run in my Myler Combination bit. That's just what worked for my horse. If I were to do it all over again, I would've tried a lot harder to get him comfortable running in a plain snaffle, rather than relying on leverage.

As for leg protection, I would prioritize getting protection for your horse. As soon as you start working on turns with speed, the opportunity to injury increases. I prefer my SMB Elite's and my SMB bell boots. Even if your horse isn't shoed, you may still need to invest in a set of bell boots. My horse is not shoed, yet he overreaches during runs and tears up his heels if he isn't wearing his bell boots. I personally just use boots on the fronts, but some people use boots on all four.

I don't really run with a breast-collar, but do have one available in my car whenever I do run in-case of saddle slippage.

Helmets are always a really good idea when dealing with horses, and they should be more prevalent in barrel racing and the like. I have seen too many horses slip around a barrel and throw their riders hard onto the ground, and many of them were not wearing helmets. Also, I would invest in a good sports bra to compete in, as I've had problems with my regular bras getting caught on the horn. I don't know how it happens, but it has happened, and it can really throw off your run.

Toofine - 1998 Half Arabian
Minnie - 2013 Morgan
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