Just got back word on Leonato..the large Hanoverian that needed an experienced handler/rider. According to the owner he had some ground manner issues...pushy/rude etc that she says have been about 90% resolved. Under saddle he is fine, registers low on the spook meter and is steady. I have a request in for still photos. Watching his vid again he looks close both in front and behind...narrow...
As for Moe...he is only 4 hours away..I may have to take a mini trip..to me 4 hours is barely a commute :) He does have decent movement and I think I see the potential.
The biggest conformation fault I'm seeing w/Leonato is his steep shoulder, which will limit his ability to reach forward for extravagant trot extensions. But everything else indicates a build allowing for moderate to strong collection. I like his very uphill build, great neck, strong back, good strong hindquarters, big low hocks, clean legs, good hooves. He has a nicely active hind end and reaches well under in trot and canter.
He has what looks like a decent walk though he's not being asked for a good forward one. The trot is nice and can only get nicer. Down the road collection should be easy for this horse, but I'd really like to see him being asked for much more forward - not faster - in all gaits (ref. Striker's trainer's vids versus his old owner vids)
For 15K, he's a big young handsome eye-catching guy with 3 good gaits. Great bone, clean legs, barefoot behind which saves $$. He doesn't look to love jumping much from the vid, and looked slightly balky during that endeavor to me. I think the big question is how is his work ethic. I do wonder what he's like to sit on. I am intrigued, for 15K.
I rewatched Moe's vid w/sound on. He forges an awful lot. So cute-looks like a teddy bear, but he is more of a hunter type. Plus he's really huuuge.
OK...went horse shopping. I think I have more or less made my decision but to be fair am going to look at one more in this area just to put my mind at ease that I am making the right choice. I saw tow today, one was a Trakehner mare, 7 yo. Didn't get to ride that one as she came up lame when the owner started trotting her out. A quick check would indicate an abscess forming.
The gelding that is and was my strongest potential proved not to be as badly pigeon toed as the initial pic suggests. In fact the initial photos don't really do the horse justice..the 3D version is much more "truthful." While he has a larger trot than what I am used to it isn't the type that threw me off balance..it was more like one that pushed me up in the post a bit more and I had to concentrate to keep the post low. OK, I admit, I didn't do so well trying to sit the trot but that will come with time :). I was able to sit the canter easily and the horse as calm, quiet and put up with my initial balance checking. I know I was posting behind the motion in the beginning but he never changed pace or throw a hissy fit. PPE is scheduled for Wednesday so hopefully the x-rays come back clean. I have some pics but the trainer was trying to take vid while learning my camera and those vids didn't come out..the entire horse fills the screen so all I can see is an orange blur :) I am in the process of editing the vids of the trainer riding, mainly to edit out my comments :) and will post links in a bit.
You two look wonderful together, you really do He is a really eye-catching guy, isnt he? He really seems like a horse who is happy in his work. My first guy, the liver chestnut DWB in my avatar, was slightly pigeon-toed but it never affected him. My fingers are crossed for a reasonable PPE and everything.
How long will you stay? Will you go back and ride him again?
He is being vetted on Wednesday so as long as everything comes out OK I am headed back to MD on Thursday..a day ahead of schedule. IF I get back early enough from seeing the other horse tomorrow I have an open invitation to go out and fuss with him. I am hoping to get in another ride on Wednesday..I brought my saddle with me and the gullets so I can actually fit my saddle, the basics anyway, before I leave. Was also thinking positive and brought out my shipping boots and shipping halter as well :) Vids are uploading to YouTube but may take a bit..afraid I am vid editing illiterate so they are unedited and large.
This one is already up but was a short one of him just out of his stall. He started out short and needed about halfway around the arena to lengthen up.
He's such a purdy boy! I predict he will have a large barnrat fan club when you get him home--all the little horsecrazy girls will line the ring to watch him go...and maybe you'll find your next horseshow groom if they play their cards right! I found a hungry young kid who was in love with my boy Cecil (avatar guy), and he'd do anything to just do anything for him That kid is now 38, has his own horse transport company and farm in KY, and breeds some gorgeous WBs.
I know very little about dressage, although I am hoping to eventually take dressage lessons, but he is absolutely stunning! Reading the thread made me excited for the day when I will once again be able to own a horse.
I am so thrilled for you and I hope that if the PPE goes well, you share lots of pictures when he comes home, and keep us updated as time progresses :)
How the horse moves (its hind legs) is relative to the degree of ability to properly take a hh. (I would more worry about toeing in). And colleciton comes before extension. Imho any horse can do all the movements (esp piaffe), the ability to be collected has more to do with how collection is developed. That said, it is whether wants a highly competitive horse (nationally/internationally) vs learn how to properly train.
Finally gotr the other vids edited in order to cut them down...things were taking over 7 hours to load and kept timing out. I apologize in advance for my vid editing skills and recommend having some Dramamine ready to avoid getting sea sick from the camera motion. :)