Yes § 390.3(f)(3) does give you a exemption from a DOT#. The problem is does the cop that stops you feel the same way. Some think that entering a show makes you eligible for a prize. It might be best tractor and the prize may only be a ribbon but it is still compensation.
Stupid if you ask me but that is the way it is.
Lets put it this way.......
You haul a tractor with a brush cutter to a piece of property you own to cut your grass. You are exempt.
You haul this same tractor with a sickle mower that could be used to cut hay to a piece of property you own and you got real problems.
The difference is hay is a compensation. You either sell the hay or feed it to cows that you sell. You are still compensated.
I guess you could say you are cutting hay for the family horse. But who buys a tractor; sickle mower; hay baler; ect for just one horse.
Sounds more like a lie to get around DOT rules than the truth.
Hauling a tractor and using the going to a show line..... The tractor better look like it belongs in a show. Hauling a tractor for several states could also be seen as hauling for profit or delivering a sold tractor.
I know it's crazy thinking. But look at all the guys feeding a line just to get around rules. I would be willing to bet some of the people on this site advertising for tractor hauling are not legal. The good pay for the bad.