In response to the poster that was looking at a draft as a first horse because they are slow and steady - realize that perception does not translate into reality especially if this is a horse you are riding. Depending on how much experience you accumulate you may or may not be ready. A big horse moves big no matter what. They aren't always slow and steady. There strides are big, their spooks and starts are big and their reactions are big when they do react. Many are hot headed and cold backed. That is not to say you won't find a jewel but I can't tell how many times I have seen that mistake made by a new horse owner. Be it a young (or even older) person with little experience with drafts or a parent that has always heard how calm and gentle they are so buy one for their kid. You get that proud new horse owner until their child ends up in the hospital from a fall that would have likely been a non event off of a smaller horse. Many compound the error by buying a young, green draft or cross so the child and horse can grow together. It happens most with those interested in riding. IME Those that are starting out with drafts learning to drive typically start with a BTDT horse or team. Get experience with drafts or even the crosses, as they can be a handful and because of their size those that are do not belong in the hands of an inexperienced horse owner, before making a decision. Then do your research and spend time with the horse you intend to purchase.
You betcha!But after looking at info about them, and riding a couple, I've decided I like heavy set horses better (from that experience at least).
I put that bit in bold to show you I wasn't assuming all drafts were the same! :)
I see where you are coming from, however. I have seen two drafts start bolting when they came close to a water-crossing while hitched to a wagon, as well as one bolting when a baby on it's back screamed. I do have (a little) experience driving, as I learned that before riding, and (a little) experience riding them.
All I can say from those experiences, as few as they may be
is that I preferred them. End of story. Even if they are more dangerous, I just said I preferred them, to clear up confusion.
As for them being slower or always calmer, that wasn't what I said originally. I just went off of what Kimargue said, because correcting her was not in my best interests, haha!
No, I would say drafts can be very difficult, and fast when they feel like it. Once, I was charged with making sure a Belgian didn't wander off, for a few minutes, and geez! It was so strong, and super hard to keep away from the mules.