Here I am again with my crazy ideas that will probably be laughed at by everyone ;) But I figure if anyone with an open mind is reading this it would be interesting to see!
Rather than use soring, pads and abuse to train these horses to have flashy gaits, why not clicker train them? I've seen clicker trained horses compete in all walks of the horse world, from hunters to eventers to dressage and reining and WP, why not CT the horse to have flashy gaits?
This is a video of Georgia Bruce, using CT she's done some impressive dressage and reining - her horses are beautiful and well trained, responsive and eager to do the job. If she can CT a horse to Piaffe and Passage and sliding stop and spin, why couldn't someone train a horse to gait so unnaturally exaggerated?
This would certainly take more work and better trainers, but isn't that what a competition should be about? Rather than just who can cut the most corners?
I would love just one person to CT their flat or unshod, normally trimmed TWH to gait that flashy just to show the world abuse isn't needed.