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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've always wondered what the best saddle in the world would be. What do top GP riders ride in? (dressage, jumping). It's always puzzled me. Maybe it's something I've never heard of, but I really would like to know what you guyss think would be the best saddle over all saddles.

Thanks!
 

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It isn't about what "Brand" of saddle is the best - it is what works best for you and your horse. What saddle aids your position and your job, instead of working against you. What saddle best fits your horse and works with your horse, not against.

Every GP rider, has a different saddle. Also some GP riders will be in a certain "brand" of saddle, because they are being sponsored by that company, so that people who want to have a saddle that GP Riders are using, see that particular rider in their brand of saddle, and will have to rush out and buy one - so therefore, their marketing strategy worked :)

There are so many saddles on the market today - what works well for one, doesn't mean it is going to work for another. What fits one particular horse body type, doesn't mean it is going to work for another.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That makes a good point. In that case if you were to evaluate saddles, what do you believe to be the best brand- not concerning horse or rider.
 

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Vega are exceptionally well made saddles. I drool over these saddles! Exceptionally well made, beautiful leather, and if I could afford one, I would get one.

French Made Saddles are very nice. Antares saddles are very well made as well.

I've always like Stubbens, Rembrandts, Marcelle Toulouse - and now a new line that Stubben has come out with, the Philipe Fontaine. Harry Dabbs origionals are very nice as well.

I dislike Bates, I dislike Pessoa's, and I really dislike HDR's very much.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Vega are exceptionally well made saddles. I drool over these saddles! Exceptionally well made, beautiful leather, and if I could afford one, I would get one.

French Made Saddles are very nice. Antares saddles are very well made as well.

I've always like Stubbens, Rembrandts, Marcelle Toulouse - and now a new line that Stubben has come out with, the Philipe Fontaine. Harry Dabbs origionals are very nice as well.

I dislike Bates, I dislike Pessoa's, and I really dislike HDR's very much.
I used to like HDR's. I got one and it was great, but now I'm finding that it really isn't all that great. :( The stuffing is wearing down and it doesn't fit like it used to.

May i ask why you don't like Bates and Pessoa? And how much is a Vega saddle?
 

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Vega are exceptionally well made saddles. I drool over these saddles! Exceptionally well made, beautiful leather, and if I could afford one, I would get one.

French Made Saddles are very nice. Antares saddles are very well made as well.

I've always like Stubbens, Rembrandts, Marcelle Toulouse - and now a new line that Stubben has come out with, the Philipe Fontaine. Harry Dabbs origionals are very nice as well.

I dislike Bates, I dislike Pessoa's, and I really dislike HDR's very much.
I just saw that SmartPak is carrying the Antares line of "stuff" I about died when I saw the prices. Their saddles were all around 5000, a helmet from them was 600, and the bridles were all around 400. It's insane!

I drool over the Vega saddles too, they look sooo comfortable. Another brand that I use to drool over were the Jaguar (as in the car) brand of saddles, Dover use to carry them, but I haven't seen them in a while so not sure if they are still being made. Really cool saddle though.

I would love to get a Rembrant someday. The owner of the horse that I am leasing lets me use her Rembrant dressage saddle and that saddle is sooo comfortable, really just cradles the rider.

I have never really cared for stubbens, I do love their off brand, the CTD, but every "real" stubben that I have sat in or ridden in has been hard as a rock and since the only place I lack cushion is my butt it was not a fun ride.

Anyway, I know there are certainly some saddles that are better than others, a lot of the best saddles seem to be german made, but I also agree that once you get to the top levels unless you are being sponsored by a certain saddle company a lot of those saddles are custom made for horse and rider.
 

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Jaguars are made by Harry Dabbs. Or were, lol.

I dislike Bates because they only fit a certain type of back on a horse, just like Wintecs. Their tree's are quite strait on most of their models, not all, but Bates owns Wintec and they are made from the sale factory on the same lines - so the tree's in both brands of saddles are the same - strait.

I don't like Pessoa's on a personal matter. They don't fit me nicey at all for my body type and I find they perch me too forward. Being an Eventer, that doesn't work for me since I have to beable to rock back and center on approach to a CC fence. They are fine in the Stadium Ring, but beyond that, meh. I also don't like that they are stuffed with foam, with a little bit of wool - so when restuffing comes up, it'll cost you a pretty penny.
 

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The best saddle is the one that fits you and your horse the best, is the most comfortable to the both of you, and IMO the best quality. The most comfortable (and beautiful!) saddle I ever owned was an Antares! Unfortunately it was just a touch too small and I had to sell it. :( My next favorite (what I own now) is a Delgrange but I would happily own a Devoucoux.

A lot of GP riders find what saddle they like and then get a sponsorship with that brand. I know Beezie Madden tried several brands but liked the Delgranges the best so she got them to provide saddles for her. They don't pay her (like Ariat does), they just give her saddles when needed. McLain Ward rides in CWDs, Cara Raether rides in Devoucouxs. Chris Kapplar rides in a Butet.
 

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Are you looking to buy a saddle or are you just asking in general? I personally ride in a Collegiate Senior Event Saddle. It's not the best saddle in the world by far but it was one I could afford, it has a changeable gullet as I ride different horses so this was a plus for me and I love that I can do dressage, jumping, trail riding etc in comfort and it puts my seat and leg in a good position to do what I want when I want. I have ridden in some other much more expensive saddles and I still always prefer mine, but it is and always will be a personal preference.

That being said, I would one day love to own a Schleese saddle. I have ridden in a few of them and they are some of the most comfortable saddles I have ever ridden in. I have never been a stubben, bates or pessoa fan but some people swear by them. I have also heard that antares saddles are very nice but I have no first hand knowledge of them to add. Growing up I had an older close contact Crosby that I adored and fit a large number of horses and myself as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks guys! I'm just curious to see what everyone thinks the best saddle is- not including horse or person.

I will be in the market for a new saddle sometime and I realllly like the collegiate post graduate (close contact). I rode in one when trying out a horse and I thought I had died and gone to heaven it was so comfortable! So I'm always searching for the best deals on those.
 

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I like the collegiate brand saddles, I have owned two and I really liked both. I think they are beautiful saddles and you can often find them used for a steal.
 

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In my opinion the 'top' saddles are

Delgrange's, Butet's, CWD's, Devoucoux, Childeric's, Tad Coffin's (?), and Antares.
It all depends what fits you, I've heard that Childerics give some people horrible pains in their hips.
Other people love theirs.
 
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