Manufacturer: Double J Saddlery
Model: Lynn McKenzie Special
Category: Barrel Saddles
Purchase: I custom ordered this saddle through a local trainer/futurity rider who is also a wholesale dealer and a close friend of Lynn McKenzie. I had tested a Lynn McKenzie Special at one of her clinics and instantly fell in love... it really freed up my mare's shoulders and allowed her to extend her trot, plus it was comfy for me. I paid about $1,500 for it and a matching headstall back in early 2002.
Likes: I LOVE this saddle! It fits my horses better than any other saddle I've ever used and is the comfiest saddle I've ever sat in (and I've sat in lots of saddles - barrel, roping, english, etc.). I ended up selling my old Court's. I was underweight when I bought it and once my weight came back up, unfortunately the saddle is now too small for me. I still use it occasionally, but mainly let my niece ride in it. I bought a Josey for myself, and really wish I would've saved a little more and went with another Lynn McKenzie... I hate my Josey saddle. It fits my horse okay, but it is VERY uncomfortable.
Dislikes: There's nothing I don't like. While I'm tempted to say "price", I really can't because, honestly, you get what you pay for.
Quality: Top-notch construction & quality. The rigging is unique and allows freedom in the horse's shoulders, as do the flared bars. The straps holding the dee rings and the stirrup leathers are biothane, which allows greater longevity and strength.
Summary: This is the best saddle out there for barrel racing and for general western riding. Even though mine no longer fits me, I still keep it for the kids in the family. Some people might think I'm crazy for keeping such an expensive saddle for the occasional rides that my nieces and nephews use it for, instead of trading it in for a new one for myself... but, it puts you in the perfect position, it's comfy for the rider AND is comfy for the horse. It's so much easier to teach a kid the right way to ride starting out, than it is to allow poor habits to develop from being stuck in a cheap saddle that puts the rider in a poor position and then try to fix those habits later on. I LOVE this saddle and can't wait till I can get my next one!
Usefulness Rating: 3.375 out of 5.
8 reader(s) voted.
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