I'm hoping to get some help and feedback on a horse than I'm leaning towards purchasing.
I am an intermediate rider schooling currently at 3'. I've been riding since I was a child but took about 10 years off for college and career. I've been back at it for about a year and a half now. I haven't shown as an adult but want to start once I'm ready and find the right partner! I'm doing basic dressage and work over fences in my lessons. I'd like to eventually do both hunter and jumper classes.
I've been contemplating moving to a different trainer (thus I've gone out horse shopping on my own with input from horse friends through pictures and videos.) But this guy I'm checking out is a big purchase and I'd like as much input as I could get.
The horse is 16.1h 6 yr old gray TB. He raced twice and the owners said he wanted to look at butterflies instead of run fast and that's when she bought him. She has had him for two and half years and done all of his training. His sale ad says, "He is a promising young sport horse with exemplary movement and textbook form over fences. He excels in his work and is eager to perform everyday. No vices. No spook, bolt, rear, buck. This horse will finish to be a top contender in the equitation ring, hunter ring, derby ring or jumper ring. Super fancy enough for the professional and easy enough for the adult/childrens ring."
I have ridden him once and he was perfect. He's a really pretty mover, listened really well, engaged, good attitude, etc. I'm a little concerned that he's behind the bit too often, though. We rode in a rubber bit, which I thought was pretty unconventional. We jumped about 3' and he was pretty skittish with the jumps. He jumps about 10 feet high over each jump no matter how high it is. I'm hoping he just needs more miles over fences? The owner had me show him the jumps before we went over. He did go over each time but only got comfortable after we'd been over it a few times. I'm not at all concerned that he needs more education, I'm concerned that he's priced in the $30k's and still needs work over fences. Is this typical for nicer horses? He's within my budget but the other horses I have looked at in that price range were more comfortable over fences.
The owners are the nicest people and I would be doing a lease to purchase at their barn. There is one large thing that concerns me though - the horse had a fractured splint bone and had surgery to remove it about a year ago. The owner has offered that I talk to her vet. The vet said it was textbook and that the horse should have no problems going forward.
I REALLY appreciate any advice you guys can give! Thank you!