I was browsing around this morning (what can I say, horses are like potato chips, one is never enough!) and this gelding caught my eye. I'm not sure why he did, maybe it was his name or his cute face. I'm wondering about his conformation and what discipline he would be most suited to. I'm not seriously considering him, but am on a quest to learn more about conformation. However...if the chance arose I would probably go pick him up and bring him home, I just think he's adorable!
His name is 'Notsofastmyfriend' (:-)) barn name 'Amigo', sire is "Harry the Hat' and dam 'I Disagree'. He's a 16.1 hand, 2008, bay gelding with 8 total starts. Website says hes related to Seattle Slew, Affirmed, Bold Ruler, and Northern Dancer.
Shoulder seems ok and he has good depth through the girth
Not sure if it is just the photo, but something seems off with his knees
Back is quite short
Hindquarters arent too bad
Hard to accurately judge the hind legs, but nothing terrible is popping out at me
Here's another pic, maybe its a little better for critiqueing
dressage or hunter. I would not do big jumps with him. something wonky about those fronts. it may be the start of arthritis in the knee
I'd be interested in why he was taken off track after so few starts (ie if there was an injury) as that would impact what he would/wouldn't be a good prospect for now. It doesn't automatically mean anything, but is reason to do a little more digging if one is seriously considering a horse. As an example, our OTTB had only eight starts - having watched the race replays and talked with the original breeder/trainer it's very obvious why - she was flipping her palette and would fade fast and hard at about the 1/2 way point (but boy was she fast before that). Luckily it is nothing that has impacted her ability to be used and enjoyed as a pleasure riding horse.
Basically I like! Great shoulder angle and size, the higher neckset I like, great bone especially for a TB, nice big feet, uphill, good length of back, gorgeous head and kind eye. The only faults I could find are in his haunches, which are (to my eye) less impressive than the front 2/3rds of him, though that wouldn't stop me if I was looking and he vetted well. And the 2nd conf shot seems to show that he may toe out a little? And I wonder what that bump is on his right knee....
That said, I look forward to Elana's assessment, as I always do. We all have a gem in her!
His right knee appears to have had surgery (bone chip removed?) His shoulder is a bit steep which would restrict his front end reach and lifting his knees over fences. This is countered by a reasonably correct set and angle at the point of shoulder, so he will probably be "ok" in front. He is a little tied in at the knee (left side) and the right side appears to have some swelling along the cannon (old bow? Something associated with the knee?).
For dressage he is built quite down hill and the root of his neck is insufficiently high. If you draw a line from the point of buttock to the root of neck you will see the down hill build. You can even see this in the first photo where his hind leg is stretched to the rear lowering his rear end. To add to this, his knees are very much lower than his hocks so he will be forehand heavy and difficult to balance.
His rear end is a bit light and his coupling area is a bit waspy making his front look larger than his rear. This can be an issue with the breed. This horse has adequate flesh so it is not as obvious.
Without the knee issue and possible tendon issue he might have been OK over fences.. not stellar but OK. With the knee issue I would want a PPE and a guarantee. With the down hill build, dressage will be difficult.
Quite honestly, as nice an eye and all that this horse has.. there are conformation and possible soundness issues which will and may interfere with what he can do.
This is a horse who did not make it for what he was bred for (racing). Being a male, and a gelding, with leg issues I am seeing and conformation issues this horse has a limited future.
Honestly.. there is little use in the world for a gelding with soundness issues. A gelding who cannot work and cannot be bred.. and most who are sound are not breeding prospects anyway.. is really just a resource user. If you have the resources, he will use them.. if you do not then.. well.. the future is dim indeed. .
I agree with Elana completely.
Dressage is off for him as he will never be able to collect properly because of his build.
He could do a bit of jumping - providing he is sound. I doubt he will have spectacular technique or power over fences.
Quite honestly after seeing his walk I expected a much better canter. I did, however, like his relaxed and easy going attitude.
So in the spirit of learning-let's say this horse isn't going to make it over fences or compete meaningfully in dressage because of collection issues. We don't know anything about his injury history, but might make some educated assumptions that's something going on with the knee. I see such a kind eye and relaxed presence about him- if you had to hedge your bets, would you think he could make it in a home with light hacking, and no competition?
Just asking because Elana, I was surprised to hear you have such a dim prognosis for him. From the limited information here, you have some pretty major concerns about his future, but it seems to me that a horse with a nice disposition (assuming that is in fact that case) could be a great horse for someone who just wants to improve their basic riding abilities and hack around, without conformation interfering.
Again, all asked in the spirit of learning more about assessing potential future horses...
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