World Grand Champion in
Cash For Keeps #913503
The year 2000 marked
new beginnings with renovations and improvements all across the show
grounds. Changes to the Celebration grounds included the addition of
an elegant Celebration Plaza housing the event's new Winner's Circle.
This is adjacent to a recently constructed covered practice ring that
provides all-weather convenience. Also, 27 barns were replaced with
state-of-the-art facilities on the grounds.
Celebration 2000 marked the third year of the award-wining S.H.O.W.
campaign, which promotes Sound horses, Honest judging, Objective
inspections and Winning fairly. S.H.O.W. W is the walking horse fan's
assurance that the Celebration is dedicated to carrying out their
duties as the industry's premier event.
Attendance and entries were at a record and near record high,
respectively, at this year's show. Paid attendance was 225,540 for the
11-day event, and actual attendance totaled 152.469.
At the sane time, total entries were 4,161, more than 9 percent higher
than last year.
The teams of Keeps
and Gilmer has been together for three years. The Harrell Brawner
family of Wynne, Ark., owns Keeps. The Brawners bought Keeps six years
ago, and decided in 1997 that they would like to have him closer to
home. In December of 1997, they placed Keeps in Gilmer's hands at [us
stables in Eads, Tenn.
The pair made their debut in Jackson, Miss., in 1998 and won a
preliminary and a championship title. They also earned stake titles at
the 1998 Cotton Classic and the Spring Fun Show. They added a
preliminary win at the Celebration that year and followed that with
the fifth place tic in the championship.
In 1999, the wins piled up: Dixie Jubilee, Hernando Lions Charity
Classic, Moore County. Southern Championship, While Oak Classic and
reserve in a preliminary at the Celebration.
Keeps and Gilmer only showed twice before Celebration 2000. Winning
the championship class at Lewisburg and reserve at Woodbury, primed
them for the "world's greatest horse show." They took reserve in
the preliminary class the first Saturday night. And on that final
Saturday evening, the stallion made what both Brawner and Gilmer
referred to as a near-perfect performance in the championship.
The partnership of Cash For Keeps and the Brawners began in 1994 with
a phone call from Sammy Day wanting Brunner to come look at a horse
that he thought Brawner would be interested in. "I knew the first lime
I saw him . . . I bought hum that day," said Brawner.
Keeps and Day won in Pulaski that year In 1995 they won the
four-year-old preliminary class at the Celebration. Keeps brought the
louse down when he was named Four-Year-Old World Grand Champion that
To get to the
winner's circle, Keeps and Gilmer had to lop the best names in the
business. Keeps was one of five horses called to workout for the
first place lie. The crowd response as the five top stallions
rounded the ring was deafening. Everyone was on his or her feet
shouting. Some thrive under pressure. Keeps took the crowd's roar
and tinned it into fuel. "He got a little stronger each round,"
Gilmer said. "The strongest round he made all night was the last
round. That's what you want to do."
As the spotlight scanned the line-up at the end of the class,
Gilmer waited. Then came the voice of Cliff Gillespie, "entry
number 1-9-5-5." But Gilmer still waited. "I thought I was
dreaming," he said. I just sat there a minute to make sure 1 was
awake. I had dreamed of it for so many years. When it finally
happens you don't believe it's really happening."
It was on Saturday
night. September 2, that a crowd of 28,691 watched Cash For Keeps and
Ray Gilmer become the Tennessee Walking Horse World Grand Champions
for the first Celebration of the new century.
After those wins, things slowed down for the talented Stallion, but
when he and Gilmer got together, things began to pick back up. And
pick up they did. After their championship ride. Gilmer said "It was
just like a dream. He was so easy to ride. Everything I asked him to
do, he did it, and he looked like he was having the time of his life.
He was awful close to perfect."
Cash For Keeps will stand at Gilmer's new facility, Falcon Ridge
Faints, just south of Jackson, Tenn.
If you wish to print off
this pedigree, click
to load a black and white copy.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, October 07, 2008 3:45 AM
Subject: Cash For Keeps
I love your site. Spend many, many hours
doing research and just reminiscing. If you have time I
would appreciate it if you would update Cash For Keeps
My family sold Keeps to life long family
friend Jennie Morrision and her family in 2004. He
remains with his trainer Ray Gilmer. The attached is an
article published in the Voice and I hope you can use it
to update Keeps page.
Thank you so much,
Gilmer Made History On Cash For Keeps
Keeps and Ray Gilmer make their victory pass
as the 2006 Fun Show Plantation Lite Shod Champions.
SHELBYVILLE, TN – Ray Gilmer made
history when he won on 2000 World Grand Champion Tennessee Walking
Horse Cash For Keeps in the Plantation Lite Shod division. The test
run in this new division occurred at the 2006 White Oak Classic in
Holly Springs, Miss. It was a success. However, it was his win in
this division at the 2006 Celebration Spring Fun Show that brought
his division change to national attention and rave reviews.
“We had been talking about it for years,” Bart Gilmer said. “We went
with the lite shod division because we wanted to make the largest
transition to showcase his natural ability.
Cash For Keeps and Ray Gilmer make their victory pass
as the 2000 World Grand Champions.
“A great horse
should be able to excel at any level of show ring competition,” Ray
Gilmer, said. “All the pads and action devices should do is enhance
a horse’s natural gait.”
Cash For Keeps is sired by WGC Coin’s Hard Cash and is out of a
Pride Of Midnight/Go Boy’s Shadow mare. He was bred by Bonnie Cady.
He was first purchased by Ernie Berzette and Kevin McNatt in 1994.
Hoil Walker bought into the partnership in 1995. Later that year, he
was purchased by the partnership of Bill and Sandra Johnson and the
Harrell Brawner family. With Sammy Day in the irons, Keeps won the
1995 Four-Year-old World Grand Championship. The Brawners purchased
full interest in him in 1997 and decided to bring him to West
Tennessee to be closer to their Arkansas home. They selelcted Ray
Gilmer for his long reputation for training top horse and his
Ray Gilmer has had a long run of success and enjoyment with the
15-year-old copper stallion. Their resume’ boasts prestigious
victories from such shows as Fun Show, Dixie Jubilee, Southern
Championships, and more. They won the Five and Over Stallion class
at the Celebration in 1998 but all pales in comparison to their
popular victory in the 2000 World Grand Championship.
In the fall of 2004, Cash For Keeps was purchased by Bill and Jeanne
Morrison and put back in training with eyes on the amateur division.
He was sidelined most of 2005 with an injury but is fully recovered
as has been proven with his winning performances this year.
Cash For Keeps has become the poster-child for versatility and
natural ability in the show Tennessee Walker. His transition from
padded to lite shod is a testament that the Tennessee Walking Horse
is indeed the world’s greatest show and pleasure horse.
If you have a story or photos of Cash For Keeps
that you would like added to this page, please forward them to