ok! update! so i went to visit that ottb gelding again. i spoke to his former owner/breeder and found out that he has an old bone chip in his knee. X-rays were taken and the vet said he should have 6 months rest. Once through with his time off the gelding would be good as gold for anything. The vet didn't even want to both removing the chip because it's stationary and would cause more problems rather than help. The breeder told me she kept the gelding in a stall for 3 months then turned him out for the remaining 3 months. She has no gain if this gelding is to be sold. She told me that he should be sound because the vet was very optimistic as far as prognosis. She was upfront and honest about everything.
After seeing the gelding again on Friday, I'm even more in love. He's very level headed. I was able to ride him out in the open grass - not in a ring - and he was an angel. When he would start getting quick I'd ask to slow down and he would do so immediately. VERY responsive and kind. I felt safe and totally comfortable on him. He felt and looked great. I watched the current owner ride him twice - once in the ring and once in the grass - and he never looked off. She did w/t/c, circles, direction changes, etc. I did the same after her (minus cantering because I was content with just w/t for the timebeing.
I'll keep in mind about the tendon/ligament issues but you can blatantly see how desperately he needs a trim. Although he never moved awkwardly or gave a hint of unsoundness, he moved better in the grass where it was softer. He was more forward.
I'll be having a couple vets look at his x-rays to give me their opinions. I'm just IN LOVE with EVERYTHING about this horse - temperament/personality, great conformation, kind and pretty face, willingness to please, etc.
I've heard with minor bone chips horses have still gone off to jump in the hunters circuits no problem. I've also heard of some bone chips, if small enough, adhering and mending themselves naturally. I just know that most OTTBs have an injury, whether we know it or not. I'm paranoid, not going to lie, but I will be truly upset if it's a no-go considering how perfect this horse is and how nicely we worked together/how responsive he was to me.