Journal on the Road

Versatility Rocks

July 7, 2011

Sixes Sixgun wins first under both judges in the versatility ranch horse competition at the 2011 Battle in the Saddle.

By Larri Jo Starkey

Tripp Townsend of Earth, Texas, and Sixes Sixgun negotiate a ranch trail obstacle July 6 at Battle in the Saddle. (Larri Jo Starkey photo). For more photos, scroll to the slide show below.

At the 2011 Pfizer Versatility World Championship Show, Tripp Townsend admits he made a couple of mistakes with Sixes Sixgun.

On July 6, at the versatility ranch horse competition at Battle in the Saddle, presented by RFD-TV, Tripp hoped to get a little more experience for himself and for “Crofoot.”

Tripp hails from Earth, Texas, where he has been riding Crofoot for the Crofoot & Sandhill Ranches for the last two years. Through that time, he and the gray stallion have become a team, especially in the working ranch horse portion of versatility competition.

“It went good (today),” Tripp said after placing first under both judges at Battle in the Saddle. “He was smooth all the way through. Usually the cow horse part of it is his best event, and that was pretty true today also.”

Crofoot was foaled in 2006 by Sixes Pick, the first AQHA versatility world champion, and out of Sixes Playgun by Playgun. He was bred by Burnett Ranches. Four of the exhibitors in the versatility class were previous world champions: Chance O’Neal, Mike Major, Mozaun McKibben and Holly Major.

Crofoot’s consistency paid off. He was in the top three in all five of the events that make up a versatility class: working ranch horse, ranch riding, ranch trail, ranch cutting and ranch conformation. He was first under both judges in the conformation portion.

“I was very proud of him in the halter,” Tripp said. “Today was the first time we’ve ever won a halter class, so that sure helped seal the deal.”

In the final tally, Tripp and Crofoot were first overall under both judges.

For more photos from the versatility ranch horse competition as well as the exciting roping and cutting action from Battle in the Saddle, watch the Journal slide show below. To view the captions, click on the photos.

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I was very proud of him in the halter. Today was the first time we’ve ever won a halter class, so that sure helped seal the deal.