Originally Posted by cb06
They've been bred for over 200 yrs specifically to be a reliable and smooth riding horse and temperament is part of that.
Not quite 200 years. Not even 180 yet
The "ASB" was created as the result of crossing TB with the wonderfully gaited saddle horses that were hugely popular in the Midwest and Southern states. A couple of stallion crosses had the mare's gait (Denmark being the most notable) and became the foundation stallions of the ASB breed. They were born in the very late 1830's or early 1840's and were bred prolifically (along with their offspring) to saddler mares during the 1840's and 50's in an effort to ensure more gaited offspring. Of course back then most "breeds" weren't handled like they are today (e.g. The ASB weren't a "registered" breed until around the 1890's about 50 years after they were created)
The saddlers have contributed to pretty much all our gaited horses. They were all naturally gaited (they all gaited and didn't have to be taught), but breeders breeding more for show than for keeping the all natural gaits have resulted in more gaited breeds producing animals that don't gait or have to be taught vs gaiting naturally. The ASB can do a nice "pace" the show people have fits over, because it's not a rack or the slow walk so it's not something they want, but the pace makes a great ride