I've been doing a lot of thinking lately, and I have decided it is time to sell Bundy.
I originally bought him as a re-sale horse - Nearly all my horses are re-sale horses as I don't have my own property or a great deal of money - So selling one horse is the only way for me to get a new horse and progress. I've bought, worked/trained/competed then sold about three horses so far and taken about 3 or 4 more on loan or as a favour and worked and performed them as well.
Bundy wasn't what I was looking for in the first place - I wanted a mare, around 14.3h - And I got a 15.2h gelding .
He had a lot of issues that we have worked through and he is now a very good, reliable performance horse. He is consistently good at anything we try and rarely leaves a competition without ribbons and numerous comments admiring him. He seems to have that 'X-factor' that makes people love him. He has been ridden by begginers in fast paced competition and in the show ring and took one younger friend of mine to champion after she rode him for 5 minutes before the class. This is a horse who was passed over by a well known experienced rider in our area because he was 'lazy' and he bucked. (Bucking was due to bad saddle fit).
I've campaigned him a fair bit in ASH shows, the pony club circuit and begun campdrafting with him. I believe he has real potential to campdraft but as I am jut starting I am not the one to bring it out. He is always in the ribbons at ASH shows even with myself being an amateur compared to most of the big names out there showing. We rarely don't win our working class.
However there are numerous things I want to 'tweak' - But I don't think I will get him any further myself now unless I get regular lessons, which just won't happen where I live (Lack of discipline specific trainers here). We also have somewhat of a 'personality clash' when it comes to training new things - he can be quite obstinate and so can I, so we tend to clash minds a lot and neither wants to back down. It is also hard when I am trying things for the first time and he goes back to putting in the least amount of effort possible. I feel horrible when we have a battle of the wills and can't help but think someone with a different approach and more knowledge would be a better match for him. Watching him ridden by a trainer at a private lesson a few weeks ago really brought home how much talent he has that I can't bring out at the moment. He has the potential to be a seriously great ASH show horse or campdrafter.
Because of his saddle fit issues I have only one saddle for him which I can't jump in - this means I can't jump at all as Latte isn't up to that yet. He is also too big for me to do to do MG seriously on as well as having such a sensitive back that I have to limit the getting on/off which doesn't work with MG.
What has brought this to a head is a mare for sale near me - Who happens to fit ALL of my criteria. She is a shorty (14h), QH registered and eligible for 1st cross ASH regististration, bred for campdrafting and cow work, is a granddaughter of Acres Destiny who is the most popular and successful campdraft sire of this time so is a great candidate for breeding in the future, a mare, has no pre-existing issues like Bundy did, and on top of it all happens to be a beautiful buckskin. Oh, and the price is actually reasonable.
On top of that, I have jut taken out a 24k car loan and with the worst possible timing am moving to a job thatis about a 10k a year drop in salary. The difference between what I would get for Bundy and what I would buy her for is about 4k which would really help me out financially.
I know my dad isn't going to like seeing him go as he really gets along with him. There is lots more I wanted to do with him but i'm coming to see that we aren't the perfect match, performance and training wise. He is limited in what I can do on him (Mostly my probelm - Can't afford a jumping saddle custom fitted and not being able to vault on such a big horse).
However I love the big sucker and we have gone through a lot - He is a completely different horse now compared to the obese, sore, cranky, dull, bucking, biting and kicking horse that I bought a few years ago. But I already have one forever gelding and can't keep another.
I think I will make his price VERY negotiable if someone nearby buys him so I can keep an eye on him and make sure his 'special needs' are met.
Ugh, I guess I just feel a bit guilty or something. I do think it is the right thing to do though, for him as much as me.