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Draft crosses

2477 Views 22 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  ladybug97
Does anyone else have a draft cross and they jump? I've seen so many people against using draft crosses for jumping. I recently bought a draft cross and while I don't plan on jumping super high with him, I'm curious about others who have jumped up to at least 3ft with theirs. He's a decently thick horse, but only 15. something hh. He's smaller and heavier in person, but still has that lighter breed look to him. He's been doing great with jumping so far and the seller had jumped him over verticals and even a xc jump. I'm excited to see where he goes! I just wanted to see others draft crosses or even if you have a purebred draft who jumps.
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It all depends on his conformation. Yes, draft crosses jump. So do drafts. Should they depends on their build, your experience and what they're jumping. My son leases a draft cross to event. The horse is very well put together, has nice sturdy legs that can carry his own weight well and he's very talented at jumping. Dressage as well. I prefer to see a shorter back but as long as you aren't heavy then it shouldn't be an issue.
 

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I wouldn't jump my draft, both because I've no interest in it, and I don't think he's suited to it ( though I was told by some other boarders they thought he could probably jump up to 1 foot and be fine ). However, when I was searching for trainers for him, I found plenty who trained drafts and draft crosses in all manner of disciplines, including jumping! I think so long as you're wary of your horses physical limitations and attitude, there's no harm in trying it out 🙂
 

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There's a draft cross at my barn that jumps. He's a Clydesdale-TB cross and is a perfect, handsome mix of the two. He doesn't like jumping and really has to be forced to do it. For that matter, he doesn't really like doing much of anything. But he really doesn't like to jump. He doesn't jump over two feet. I would think jumping up to three feet would be pretty unhealthy for a draft cross on a regular basis. All of that weight landing hard on the ground over and over again. I have a hard time imagining a draft cross that would want to do that.
 
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Actually, along with some drafts, it is a favored activity. One of my mares (Belgian) could and did regularly jump 5 foot. With and without a rider. I was much lighter then, she had really good conformation and loved nothing more than jumping. Same with the horse my son rides - Arabian crossed with Belgian. My son is fairly light. If the legs are sturdy and fit the body then it is no different than a smaller horse. You wouldn't want any horse with tiny feet and toothpicks for legs jumping and expecting to support their own much less the added weight of a rider. People are more careful about the weight they expect a saddle horse to carry. Not so much a draft or cross. They seem to throw good conformation out the window and don't understand that it isn't the height or weight of the horse that makes it suitable to carry weight it is the conformation. Most drafts and many crosses are not ideal for the weights they are expected to carry.
 
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I've seen, and ridden, plenty of draught crosses, traditional/gypsy, cobs and a couple of Clydesdales jumping.

There's nothing wrong with it if they're kept within their ability and they're enjoying themselves. We're used to seeing them jumping in the UK and there seems to be fewer people who think that these crosses - cob types - can't jump or do anything fast.

I remember a friend's maxi-cob, a Clydesdale/TB cross, going hunting every week and taking everything in his stride. He had to get his feathers clip off as you'd mistake him for a Clydesdale in his natural state.

I rode a maxi-cob, an irish draught cross, a couple of traditional cobs and other cob types out, and over show jumps and cross country and, while some of them weren't fast and they had their own height limits, they all loved it and made great safe rides.

He's a good looking horse, find out what he can do then have fun.
 

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Ever see a warmblood jump?
Welcome to a draft-cross bred horse jumping......... 😐
That's all a warmblood is...a cross of a draft horse and a finer boned, lighter framed horse for refinement away from the clunk of many drafts.. That is where all those expensive "designer" crosses come/came from and people pay for willingly.

Any horse can jump.
The question is should they..........
Is this what the horses build, mind and ability excels at are more important questions to ask.


With good confirmation and careful planning since no horse has endless jumps in their body, make the training and jumping special when its time & done.
After care for the legs and body are a must for any horse to endure jumping for more of a career than a oops the trail is blocked by a small tree situation...different mindset and outcome so approach better be worthy of the animal for comfort and soundness maintained.
🐴.... jmo...
 

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The classic heavy hunter horses are drafty. I love them. There's something about the older classic hunters without the razzle dazzle of today's equestrian sports that I just love. Gives me nostalgic feels for some reason even though I never experienced it. Maybe I grew up on too much James Herriot and my mother's late 1800s period dramas 🤣

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John Whittaker (UK) jumped a draught x in the 80's called Ryans Son - he was a TV x with either a shire or a clydesdale (versions differ) and only stood at around 16 hands

The modern day courses are more aimed at the WB types but a draught cross that's got the right build and conformation can still compete OK in the lower levels.

I've got a small, quite stocky Irish Draught mare who had no problems with courses up to 3ft 6 when she was younger - the bigger spreads cause more trouble than the uprights because a heavier horse tends to be less scopey
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
It all depends on his conformation. Yes, draft crosses jump. So do drafts. Should they depends on their build, your experience and what they're jumping. My son leases a draft cross to event. The horse is very well put together, has nice sturdy legs that can carry his own weight well and he's very talented at jumping. Dressage as well. I prefer to see a shorter back but as long as you aren't heavy then it shouldn't be an issue.

I'm a pretty tiny person and light in the saddle :) However, he's with my trainer and her assistant right now to teach him to carry himself and see how he does. We probably won't jump any higher than 3ft and def not every single day. I won't even be showing a ton either, so his legs won't take that hit every single ride. Though, I've been looking into doing dressage in the future, which I think he'll be great for!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I wouldn't jump my draft, both because I've no interest in it, and I don't think he's suited to it ( though I was told by some other boarders they thought he could probably jump up to 1 foot and be fine ). However, when I was searching for trainers for him, I found plenty who trained drafts and draft crosses in all manner of disciplines, including jumping! I think so long as you're wary of your horses physical limitations and attitude, there's no harm in trying it out 🙂
I'll be very wary of his physical condition, and won't be jumping a whole lot. Once I reach those higher jumps and the more show jumping type, I'll probably have a different horse. He's mainly here to teach me the ropes of the lower jumps, the highest probably being 3ft. But he won't be jumping every ride and I don't show every single weekend, so he won't be jumping a ton. I'm more into trails and hunter paces, but the ones with low jumps. I'm not a fan of high xc type jumps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
There's a draft cross at my barn that jumps. He's a Clydesdale-TB cross and is a perfect, handsome mix of the two. He doesn't like jumping and really has to be forced to do it. For that matter, he doesn't really like doing much of anything. But he really doesn't like to jump. He doesn't jump over two feet. I would think jumping up to three feet would be pretty unhealthy for a draft cross on a regular basis. All of that weight landing hard on the ground over and over again. I have a hard time imagining a draft cross that would want to do that.
Good thing I won't be jumping a ton then. He actually loves the jumps, ears perked up, is brave to them, doesn't shy away, etc. He won't be jumping a whole lot, I'm mainly into trail rides and the occasional hunter pace with the lower jumps. I don't like the higher xc jumps. I also don't jump every single ride as a horse only has so many jumps in them and I don't show often either. So, I know my guy will do just fine
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Ever see a warmblood jump?
Welcome to a draft-cross bred horse jumping......... 😐
That's all a warmblood is...a cross of a draft horse and a finer boned, lighter framed horse for refinement away from the clunk of many drafts.. That is where all those expensive "designer" crosses come/came from and people pay for willingly.

Any horse can jump.
The question is should they..........
Is this what the horses build, mind and ability excels at are more important questions to ask.


With good confirmation and careful planning since no horse has endless jumps in their body, make the training and jumping special when its time & done.
After care for the legs and body are a must for any horse to endure jumping for more of a career than a oops the trail is blocked by a small tree situation...different mindset and outcome so approach better be worthy of the animal for comfort and soundness maintained.
🐴.... jmo...
You know, I never actually looked into how warmbloods were made but that makes a lot of sense. My guy is built more like a pony lol. He doesn't have an overly huge neck or head, doesn't have really drafty legs if that makes sense. His feet are big, but not huge. It looks like the mother was the lighter horse and the father was the draft with how he's put together. He can easily be called a cob lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
John Whittaker (UK) jumped a draught x in the 80's called Ryans Son - he was a TV x with either a shire or a clydesdale (versions differ) and only stood at around 16 hands

The modern day courses are more aimed at the WB types but a draught cross that's got the right build and conformation can still compete OK in the lower levels.

I've got a small, quite stocky Irish Draught mare who had no problems with courses up to 3ft 6 when she was younger - the bigger spreads cause more trouble than the uprights because a heavier horse tends to be less scopey
Yeah, we'll be in the lower levels for years. Once I'm ready to move up, he'll become another girl's dream horse and teach her the ropes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I've seen, and ridden, plenty of draught crosses, traditional/gypsy, cobs and a couple of Clydesdales jumping.

There's nothing wrong with it if they're kept within their ability and they're enjoying themselves. We're used to seeing them jumping in the UK and there seems to be fewer people who think that these crosses - cob types - can't jump or do anything fast.

I remember a friend's maxi-cob, a Clydesdale/TB cross, going hunting every week and taking everything in his stride. He had to get his feathers clip off as you'd mistake him for a Clydesdale in his natural state.

I rode a maxi-cob, an irish draught cross, a couple of traditional cobs and other cob types out, and over show jumps and cross country and, while some of them weren't fast and they had their own height limits, they all loved it and made great safe rides.

He's a good looking horse, find out what he can do then have fun.
Going from an ex-racehorse to this boy, I definitely get the slower pace lol. But his gaits are so smooth and he can go fast if he wants to, he's pretty energetic too. We're not sure what his exact cross is, 100% looks like a cob in person. We were thinking spotted draft with either quarter horse or paint. There's something sporty in his mix giving him this energy lol. My trainer and her assistant and another student are having loads of fun on him lol. I'll probably end up taking him more into dressage too. I feel like he'd make a beautiful dressage horse. Maybe not super fancy like the warmbloods, but something that one day he can teach another rider the ropes of hunters and dressage. I do want to try hunter paces, but I'll never be doing the high jump xc lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Actually, along with some drafts, it is a favored activity. One of my mares (Belgian) could and did regularly jump 5 foot. With and without a rider. I was much lighter then, she had really good conformation and loved nothing more than jumping. Same with the horse my son rides - Arabian crossed with Belgian. My son is fairly light. If the legs are sturdy and fit the body then it is no different than a smaller horse. You wouldn't want any horse with tiny feet and toothpicks for legs jumping and expecting to support their own much less the added weight of a rider. People are more careful about the weight they expect a saddle horse to carry. Not so much a draft or cross. They seem to throw good conformation out the window and don't understand that it isn't the height or weight of the horse that makes it suitable to carry weight it is the conformation. Most drafts and many crosses are not ideal for the weights they are expected to carry.
Exactly and his conformation makes him a pretty sturdy horse. He looks a lot better in person lol. The mother was likely a lighter horse and the father was the draft, he doesn't have a complete draft look to him. He won't be jumping super high either. I mean, if the vet clears him and he enjoys jumping higher, maybe we could. But he's a decently small cross, so won't be super high lol
 

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looks like the mother was the lighter horse and the father was the draft with how he's put together. He can easily be called a cob lol
It goes either way. I've seen really nice crosses that way as well as really nice crosses where mother was draft and father was light.
 
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