View Full Version : Eventing on a Percheron and/or Saddlebred Cross - who's got one

Jun. 28, 2012, 10:10 AM
I have two young (4 and 1) Saddlebred Percheron crosses coming along. I am riding the 4 year old but not jumping him yet. The biggest thing with him so far has been to get him coming over his topline. Otherwise he is very sweet and sturdy without being coarse. He has lovely movement. He can sometimes be rather more spooky than I like, but he did only just turn four this month. He does heat up rather quickly is something I've noticed, so cooling out might be a bit of an issue for him. His mum is a bit on the sensitive side but tries very hard to please and to stay off of you and out of your space, which is always a good thing in a draft.

What are your crosses like and what have you found to be things to address with them?

Lori T
Jun. 28, 2012, 11:07 AM
If you do a search, you will find that a bunch of us have draft crosses. My Tucker is a Perch/QH cross. He was a PMU foal whom I adopted when he was 6 months old. He is now 9.
When he first arrived, he was WILD! And big! But he came along quite quickly, thanks to clicker training, and after I halter broke him, everything else was a breeze. He is very smart, very laid back and very eager to please....especially if food is the end reward!
I took my time breaking him and we are still just going BN, although the last year has more to do with "life" interferring than anything. Hopefully, we will be back on track by fall and after some more milage, will move up.
The local BNT's love him. Jon Holling told me he could go as far as I wanted with him (I really only desire to go novice!). He is very fun and trustworthy on the xc, brave and just a good old "steady eddy", which is a switch from all the OTTB's I have owned! You just sit and go. He loves xc! Everyone thinks that because he is a perch, he is going to be a horrible mover, but are surprised when they see how lovely he moves.
The only drawback? He doesn't know how big he is! He is 17.1, but thinks he is a pony and should be able to go anywhere he pleases. With his allergies, hot wire is my best friend!
He doesn't tolerate the heat too well, which is fine by me, as I don't either. Our summers are like the winters up north..we tend to hibernate. I only ride very early and don't do too much. We don't show at all in the summer. It takes a bit of time to get the big ones in good condition, so we just maintain that throughout the summer.
Have fun with your draft crosses!
Pictures of him at my blogs below.

Jun. 28, 2012, 11:27 AM
He's handsome. My two are definitely very personable too.

Jun. 28, 2012, 01:18 PM
I event a young Saddlebred cross ...SaddlebredxTB, very different than SaddlebredxPercheron. :lol: We're about to go Training level.
He is quite the over-acheiver. He tries so very hard to do everything right, but tends to over think things and stress himself out. He has a fantastic trot, and a pretty good canter on his good side though it can get a hair lateral on his bad side. Loves to run and jump, but we struggle w/ dressage, mainly due to tension. He's only 6 though, and has improved a lot and will continue to do so.
I've had him since he was 9 months old, and I've done all of his training myself, from halter breaking on up, so he's like my child.
He can be aggressive on the ground(mainly while loose, don't go in his paddock w/o a stick), which I blame mainly on him being an orphan and having very little equine contact in the first few months of his life -- nobody to ingrain manners and personal space into his baby brain. He gets along very well w/ other horses, he loves them, but not all horses get along w/ him because he's extremely annoying and again, has no sense of personal space.

Jun. 28, 2012, 01:25 PM
I have a Saddlebred/Hanoverian cross and we are eventing at Novice right now. He is only 5 and 17.3 so getting that big of a horse all together is obviously a challenge :)

Here are some pictures from this year http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2884338703696.2121289.1116980909&type=3&l=4bffa49f07

Jun. 28, 2012, 09:12 PM
Cute horses!

Jun. 28, 2012, 09:27 PM
I have a Saddlebred/Hanoverian cross and we are eventing at Novice right now. He is only 5 and 17.3 so getting that big of a horse all together is obviously a challenge :)

Here are some pictures from this year http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.2884338703696.2121289.1116980909&type=3&l=4bffa49f07

What a flashy guy!

Jun. 28, 2012, 09:43 PM
I've had both a Percheron cross and a Saddlebred cross.

The former was a 3/4TB 1/4 Perch mare. Topped out at 4'3" in jumpers. She was quite a project when I got her as it took quite a while to form a partnership and she had a wicked, wicked buck. It was not a happy buck or a disobedience buck. The buck was all about ejection. We never did get to event as just when it was starting to really come together, she suffered a horrific leg fracture and was put down. She was a lovely mover with excellent balance.

The Saddlebred cross is now about 28 years old. He is TB-SB-Belgian draft. Funny looking thing: long-necked, long-backed and orange-coloured. When I bought him he'd only been foxhunting and used one lead only. He evented to Prelim ahd showjumped to 1.20m. Honest horse, not exactly elegant, and he oozed with disdain for dressage. Excellent, excellent, safe jumper. He's still sound and rideable.

THe SB cross is spooky. He has a phobia about paper or anything that looks like paper. I did try working on it with him but the fact is, he hates paper, so we reached a detente where he politely tells you very clearly that he doesn't like paper. No running away, just a stylized snorting to remind you.

I fell off the Perch cross countless times in the year that I had her. One day she bucked me off -- intentionally -- 4 times in half an hour. The SB cross I've had for 16 years and I've never fallen off of him, not eventing, not foxhunting, not even when paper blew by us in the street. :)

Jun. 29, 2012, 05:30 AM
I don't know what I was thinking when I started this thread but I have 3, all by the same ASB sire. The third is a palomino pinto out of Clyde/Hackney/TB mare. All three are lovely and well put together. None are coarse.

This is the dam of the two buckskins: https://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/475334_2911465151098_2041626317_o.jpg

4yr old buckskin: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=3311558273176&set=a.1017017591093.2002802.1394705687&type=3&theater

This guy turns 1 next month and I need to get updated photos: https://sphotos.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ash4/290871_2036622680583_1731365316_o.jpg

And this is the palomino pinto who just turned 3 and who I also need to get better photos of. The two bucks will probably finish at 16.2 but this guy is already 16.2: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=2016357293961&set=a.1017017591093.2002802.1394705687&type=3&theater

Jun. 29, 2012, 07:47 AM
Message her and/or do a search of her threads...she has a wealth of experience to share. Brandy is now VERY confidently competing Training, has run one Training 3 day and getting ready to do another...and yes, has something of an opinion at times, but boy is she game and keen to jump XC - LOVES it! Good luck with your ponies! :cool:

check out this video of their recent run at Midsouth PC HT:


Lori T
Jun. 29, 2012, 01:38 PM
He's handsome. My two are definitely very personable too.

Thank you! He thinks so too!

Jun. 29, 2012, 11:13 PM
Thanks FatCatFarm :) Love the pic of your now yearling, but I couldn't see your FB pics?

I really love my guy and the other siblings I have seen out of his saddlebred dam :)

Jun. 30, 2012, 01:40 AM
My Dad evented his Percheron/TB for many years (she is now semi-retired to basically just trail riding, but she is 22 yo!) and the biggest problems were keeping her cool in hot weather (they have a lot of body mass and relatively low surface area for cooling by sweating), keeping her fit (they seem to lose fitness faster than other, lighter breeds) and speed cross country (his was 50% Percheron and they aren't exactly bred to gallop!). However, she did consistently well in dressage and enjoyed the other phases and provided a generally safe, fun mount for my Dad for many years with almost no health or soundness problems.



Jun. 30, 2012, 07:44 AM
I had a Perch/TB that took me to many CCI*s and a few (admittedly not super successful, mostly due to my piloting!) Intermediate HTs. He is still the best horse I've ever had; he had the most unbelievable heart of gold and never quit, ever, even though he was not naturally the most world-beating athlete.

The biggest thing I struggled with him was strength in his back. His neck was very high-set and he tended to 'giraffe neck' a lot when he got tense or excited, and it would make it really hard to get him in a place where he was actually using his back properly. Probably 90% of the flatwork we did was long and low, even when we were competing our most.

Fitness and speed were also a bit of an issue, but by the end of his career he finished his last long format CCI* with no penalties on A, B, or C, came in only 2 seconds over on D, and cooled out easily. I did a lot of walking on hills with him, up to 2 hours a day in addition to our ride, to try to give him some more fitness without breaking him down.

I wrote many posts about him on my blog, but there is a bit of a history of him (with lots of pictures) here (http://greybrookeventing.blogspot.com/2010/12/pony-profiles-part-3-dually-part-i.html) and here (http://greybrookeventing.blogspot.com/2010/12/pony-profiles-part-5-dually-part-2.html). Man, what a horse! I miss riding him a lot. :sadsmile:

Jun. 30, 2012, 10:36 AM
Better links:

My Percheron mare, dam of two of my three Saddlebred cross geldings and then the geldings:





Jun. 30, 2012, 10:45 AM
I had a Perch/TB that took me to many CCI*s and a few (admittedly not super successful, mostly due to my piloting!) Intermediate HTs. He is still the best horse I've ever had; he had the most unbelievable heart of gold and never quit, ever, even though he was not naturally the most world-beating athlete.

I wrote many posts about him on my blog, but there is a bit of a history of him (with lots of pictures) here (http://greybrookeventing.blogspot.com/2010/12/pony-profiles-part-3-dually-part-i.html) and here (http://greybrookeventing.blogspot.com/2010/12/pony-profiles-part-5-dually-part-2.html). Man, what a horse! I miss riding him a lot. :sadsmile:

And he looks like he was a total blast!

Jun. 30, 2012, 11:07 AM
WOW, KMErickson, thank you for sharing the story of your partnership with Dually, you sound like you have grown into an amazing horsewoman.

And FatCatFarm, can you just give me that buckskin NOW?!

GraceThe Mare
Jun. 30, 2012, 12:59 PM

I just moved up to Training with my TB/Perch mare. She's only 15.2 but everyone thinks she's bigger. She jumps the moon and is very smart. LOVES her new job of being an event horse/trail horse. When I got her she was ring sour and our first ride when I got her home was backward...all the way around the farm. (My test ride when I tried her...came off 3 out of 3 times over an 18" gate stadium jump. She crow-hopped on landing. Every time.)
But, she was SO cute and I felt SO badly for her...I brought her home and she is now my favorite. horse. ever.

After about 6 months of letting her discover that walking FORWARD on (scary) trails was fun, she progressed beautifully and now I can literally do anything with her. I use her to mentor young horses for their first trips out, she's taken greenie riders all over the trails, even let my husband ride her all over (and hop logs - unintentionally?) bareback and haltered.

In short - smart horse. athletic. sturdily built. Needed a focus and a job, along with regular exercise - a variety of it - to be really happy. Easily bored and very brave out on XC or when riding alone. Likes a challenge, and loves to show off for people or other horses. Very proud mare.

She's got the typical TB traits of skin sensitivity, but is an easy keeper.

Jun. 30, 2012, 01:28 PM
thanks, ellebeaux and FatCatFarm! He was and is so amazing. He is mostly retired now but still lives on my family's farm up in Massachusetts. I've been lucky to have a lot of really great horses, but I'm not sure I'll ever have one as special as him again.

FatCatFarm, the buckskin is SO cute!!

Jun. 30, 2012, 02:33 PM
Thanks! The Saddlebred Percheron cross has turned out to be a good one for me. Since I have three, I bred the mare to a loud black and white Oldenburg guy, SS Stallone. Waiting for word of a black dot on 7/9.

Jul. 3, 2012, 12:06 PM
My 17.2 Perch/TB cross and I have been eventing and foxhunting for 12 years. We worked out way up to prelim, ran there for 5 years, did a long format CCI* and have now settled back to training. He is a cross country machine and even at prelim was often one of the fastest horses in the division.

Jul. 3, 2012, 12:15 PM
Way back in the day, I used to ride a 3/4 TB, 1/4 Percheron gelding and he was AWESOME. Had the athleticism and drive of a TB with just a little more bulk. He was about 17 hands, but stocky. To this day he was one of the coolest horses I've ever worked with and I would love to have another 3/4-1/4 cross at some point!

They are great!

Jul. 3, 2012, 11:53 PM
I had friends who had a Perchie/ASB/Shire cross - absolutely gorgeous horse and SO much fun to ride. She loved to jump and was totally point-and-shoot. I do know keeping her cool (physically, not mentally!) was an issue, and fitness for xc - but neither was insurmountable. She evented through Training (last I knew) and I think did dressage through 2nd. (I moved and we lost touch, so I don't know what she's up to now.) Neat, neat horse!

Jul. 4, 2012, 11:08 AM
My oldest is four and since I think he's a bit late maturing, I'm not going to jump him until he is five. I'm really curious how he is going to be over fences. He has jumped a small jump of his own volition in the riding area and didn't hesitate a bit. My 7 year old Anglo-Trakehner is good, but proving a bit quirky so I'm really looking forward to seeing what the four year old will be like next year when I start him over fences.

Jul. 4, 2012, 12:02 PM
I have two spotted ASB crosses...one 9yo gelding (perch/spotted ASB (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151120795530131&set=a.69493155130.138685.605145130&type=3&theater)) and a 4yo mare (friesian/spotted ASB (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150803446085131&set=a.10150803444785131.736880.605145130&type=3&theater)), and LOVE them both. The gelding could jump the moon (schooled 4'6"), and went prelim when he was 6. He had a freak injury on the flat 2yrs ago that ended his jumping career, but is back showing 2nd-3rd level dressage (he will probably top out at 4th). The mare will jump, but prefers dressage at this point. She did well last year in Materiale classes, and won her first real BN event 3 weeks ago at CHP.

If the big guy hadn't blown a tendon on the flat (did I say freak accident?), he had the goods to go at least Intermediate, if not Advanced. He still locks on to jumps when we're hacking on the xc course at home.

Best wishes for amazing careers with all three--I also sent you a PM.

:) Abbey, Davis, and Glory