Choosing an eventing horse
I'm starting to get into Eventing with my 2 friends. I am currently horseless, but I do ride my trainers horses twice a week (lessons). One is Stormy, a registered paint mare. I think she is 5 years old, but she may be 6. The highest I've seen her jump is 3'3, she is very fast and all 4 gaits are nice and she jumps very nicely. However, she is *VERY* hot. Do you think she would make a nice eventer? I will post a video on Wednesday of us w/t/c and jumping. We worked on dressage tests on Saturday but I jumped and did flat work on another horse. I'm a Hunter/Jumper and i'm an Intermediate 3.
If you're just starting into eventing, your best bet is to look for a horse strong in Dressage. It sets the score for the day at least in the lower levels where eliminations are less common.
As for a hot horse... it really depends. Is it going to make every minute of your ride an argument? Sometimes it's a case of more flat work to work on responsiveness to aids. That would really be for your trainer to determine.
Personally when I went looking, I wanted a horse with good bone, balance, sound and a willing attitude.... the rest I could work with. Now that I'm into it more, I'd say a horse with a good start on the flat that readily accepts contact on the bit.
I know this has been brought up before so I'm sure others will have other ideas as to what they look for.
Awesome, thanks. :)
She also loves to jump and I just saw a dressage video of her ar Training Level 1 and she did very well. However. she does have a habit of throwing her head around.
Throwing the head around is not a desirable trait in an eventing or dressage horse. It shows that the horse does not accept the contact and therefore it affects your score in the dressage phase - which, as others have said, is VERY IMPORTANT, especially in the lower levels. A few months ago I competed at a one-day event with my gelding, and we had a bad dressage test. We came 4th out of 7 - and two were eliminated - but had we had a good test, we could easily have won, because my horse jumped double clear with only 6 time faults for XC. Not many horses did jump double clear that day.
-nods- dressage is key. Even though at least two of the people who beat me had refusals on XC (a MASSIVE 20 penalties EACH) they still beat me because their dressage scores were good, and mine was not.
ETA; and my horse wasn't even throwing his head around! Just tense and rushy, and didn't want to transition down from the first canter.
I've never evented but in 27 years I've logged so many miles on trails and at CW events, and places that were strange to my horses that I'd recommend a horse that you can control. (I also owned an OTTB who could sail over 4 ft. jumps, and I DO know how to jump.) You need to know how it feels to have a horse that listens to you cross-country and in the stadium, EVEN IF that horse is often the slowest, or pulls rails sometimes. As a beginner, you might take on a fractious horse to learn how to retrain on the flat during the off-season, but don't start with one. If you do, you'll get refusals, and maybe get thrown. When I broke my arm from being thrown in May, 2004, I blew my entire riding season that year.
IMO, Look for the horse that everybody else finds "boring" and learn from him/her.
Okay. I rode Stormie last night in a lesson, I really liked her, but she was very forward moving (her owner does games with her and jumpers). I have never seen her refuse a jump.
ETA: This was the fisrt time I rode her. I still need to get to know her and get used to her. We also did join up after the lesson last night, and she did very well.
Just one more thing, then I'm outta here. This is a "buyer's market". That means that there are too many horses and not enough buyers, which includes leasing possibilities. You have fallen in love with this horse. I can tell bc you are defensive. I don't recommend it. Try not to date men that you make excuses for in the future. Good luck with your eventing. =D
Haha okay. My trainer has another very nice jumper mare that she wants me to try. She is perfect in dressage, XC, and jumpers. :)
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