While I was at the barn, the seller mentioned there was a mare that would suit me as well. She was already in the barn, so we looked at her first.
F was a 9 yo, 16H TB that was trained at the track but not raced. She was schooling 3′ at home and giving w/t/c lessons to beginner kids as well as taking beginners to shows and giving trail rides. She was taken to a nearby river and apparently loved the water, but she had no actual cross country experience.
I’ll admit to being unimpressed at the start. To my eyes she was a plain brown, large mare with no hair.
As we walked into the ring I was prepared to remain unimpressed as was Trainer, but we were wrong.
F went around the ring like everything was no big deal. Past jumps decorated from kid camp days that I can tell you with certainty Gem wouldn’t have even entered that arena decorated like that. She carried herself well and was obedient and relaxed about everything.
Since she was the first one I sat on, I was pretty nervous. She was tall and so very different than what I was used to.
And then I sat on her and felt comfortable from the get go. She listened so well to everything I asked. Once I set her up on a path or at a certain pace and gait, she held it until told otherwise. It was the lightbulb I needed to realize how hard Gem has been.
It’s apparent in these videos how much more relaxed I am on her. It felt good guys. Like really good.
She was so comfortable that I began to push her a bit more to see how she would react. The mere fact that I was brave enough to start upping the pressure said a whole lot.
And F never disappointed. She went around w/t/c calm and relaxed with a gentle mind and a kind heart for my mistakes. In fact, the only negative was that she took a whole lot of leg to get going and stay going. I ended up grabbing a crop to help and I’d think I’d likely need spurs for her. Not the worst issue after my hypersensitive mare, just one I’m not used to and my legs were a bit jello like at the end.
It was neat to ride with Trainer and hear things like “Ride her back toes. Move her forward. Go, go go.” Typically all I ever hear is “Slow down, no slower, SLOW DOWN”. Polar opposites.
After I got off her and we returned to the barn to look over H, she showed her true personality in her stall. She was silly, curious and a doll. I really, really liked her.
I didn’t purchase her either though I was tempted and have gone back and forth a ton since trying her.
At the end of the day though I think she was a bit too quiet for me. She never complained and went along pleasantly enough but lacked any spark. She jumped because it was in front on her and I doubt she’d ever pull a dirty stop or run out but she didn’t have that look in her eyes that showed me she enjoyed doing this. She was obedient because that is who she is.
Plus she has a physical issue that made me nervous. I’d for sure do a PPE on her and figure it out, but at 9 years old she could end up having a very long life as a pasture pet and I don’t need that either. It broke my heart to walk away from her sweet disposition, but after a lot of internal debate I knew I couldn’t take a gamble on a potentially forever lame horse.
So as much as I enjoyed my ride on F, I let her go.