Hey folks, I just rode a new horse today whose owner has it in a tom thumb. She knows I am an english rider and claims to have a dressage background, but said the tom thumb is hardly harsher than an eggbutt snaffle. Which of course makes me shudder. But long story short: she doesn't want to change the bit.
The horse has issues with its head and the neck reining isn't up to speed because she won't turn with leg cues. Which means I need to direct rein on occasion, which with the tom thumb just results in head-tossing and frustration. So here's my question: the bit is like the one pictured, so it has an additional ring directly next to the mouthpiece. If I attach the reins there instead of on the end of the shanks, and leave the curb chain on, how much less harsh will the bit become? Or should I abandon the curb chain entirely?