Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
I have the Bates Caprilli jump & AP saddle. Both seem well made. With the ones I have, at least, the saddles fit different horses. The AP was designed for a flatter back, and the jump allows the horse to have more curve front to back. My horses have some curve to their back, so the jump saddle fits them well and the AP does not. That was something I didn't expect.
My horses seem comfortable enough with either, but (and this could be my imagination, I suppose) the AP saddle feels much more bouncy on my horses (very short back Arabians). I actually need to try it on the little mustang.
For general riding, the AP ought to be more comfortable. I say ought because I like the feel of the jump saddle better, although I've never tried it for 2-3 hours on a trail. I ride about 90% in an Aussie-style saddle now, but I'm thinking of changing the gullet in the jump saddle and trying my mare with it for general purpose riding.
Just some thoughts. When you look at the saddles, don't assume a Bates Caprilli of different styles will fit your horses the same. My AP saddle sits on a stand in my closet, which is NOT what I bought it for!
"People can teach us the rules, but only horses can teach us the art of riding."