Many friends also have OTTBs and almost all of them go in some version of a snaffle.
Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.
Not my experience either. Or any of the members on exracers.com. The most common bit used is a French link snaffle...I can't think of anyone ever mentioning using anything but typical single or double jointed snaffles.
OTTB's are given a horrible rap by people who have no business handling them in the first place. As I said before, the TB is not for everyone but thats no reason to make up incorrect commntary about them...it happens all of the time. It drives me nuts!
The thread seems to have shifted to talking about riding t/b's and whilst of course they're still hot bloods, its got absolutely no relevence to what they're like as harness horses.
I've personally not found a t/b harder to stop than any other breed and neither have I found any requirement for them to be strongly bitted. Whether ridden or driven. Indeed IME a t/b is quite a sensitive - but quick - soul.
It seems to me that once again we've got Auventera giving us the benefits of her decades of experience and wisdom - yeh that will be right .
So she's reinvented herself presumably as part of the metamorphisis from TwoSimple to Auventera and to someone with an inordinate amount of experience training riding horses, competing in endurance, driving pairs and an expert with hot bloods.
Curious that she's trawling through her old postings removing and editing them where they contradicted with current claims.
However she forgot this one from not quite a year ago and when
Originally Posted by Auventera
I'm honestly stumped. All I do is trail riding, and that means going down the road quite a bit. Often times children are playing in the front yard in a pool or something, they see the horse, jump up and coming running out to the road. The horse is fine with that, but here are cute little 6 year olds, standing on the road, barefoot, petting the horse's shoulder, while she's stomping around, antsy to get going. She hates to stand still and would rather turn in circles for 3 hours, than just stand still for a minute. I've tried the whole - keep her spinning and moving until she gets so tired she wants to stand still. But all that does is get her hopped up and ready to fly even more. She has the stamina of a freight train. Am I a bad horseowner by not teaching my mare how to straighten up and stand still for the petting? Can anybody help?
Now no-one will EVER persuade me that they know anything about driving horses and have ever driven or trained a driving horse if they can't even get a horse to stand still whilst its under saddle and so a child can pat it.
And every driver on this forum knows the first principle of training a driving horse - standing still and for ever and ever and some more!
Last edited by Thomas_1; Jun. 13, 2007 at 08:26 PM.
I'm floating away from the original topic, but.... people talk about driving horses standing still, books are written about driving horses standing still and videos/dvd's are full of driving horses standing still. Visit any local CDE in the Pacific NW and you will not see driving horses standing still. Especially when they're prepping for or during the marathon phase.
I've seen calmer horses at racetracks! I volunteered to assist the vet at a CDE. What a circus, quite a few out of control horses. I haven't attended many ridden events so I don't know if it's a crosscountry "thing" or not.
If you mean they're warming the horse up prior to the marathon phase, then that's normal. And remember that a horse driving trials horse is the driving equivalent of an eventer. Its fit and should be on andrenalin and eager to compete. No different to a ridden horse trials horse prior to the cross country phase.
If you mean though that the horses are being badly behaved then I'm thinking crappy driver hyping it up either by hanging on to the reins or by getting it hot through feed rather than fit through work.
And I've been to a heck of a lot of HDT's at all levels and in all countries and got to say I well recall every circumstance of seeing such thing and because its that unusual. And the ones I've seen have all been driver error.
I've groomed event horses and a competition fit four star horse is quite an animal. I expect national and international level CDE horses would be of the same level of fitness. And I guess as long as they can hold it togethr for the dressage the other two phases they're not being judged on their manners!
I think everyone gets a little hyped for Marathon. Horses react to their drivers, excitement in the air. Marathon is the MOST FUN part of doing CDEs. Ours certainly feed off our excitement, come out snorting big, think they are Ten-Foot-Tall!! We do things to prepare horses, differently on Marathon day, they know the difference. They are controllable, certainly not on the edge of losing it, but more UP than normal.
We warm up a bit before departing, but expect horses to stand for countdown. WALK off when requested, not bounce forward. May not be thru the gate when "One" is announced, being obedient is more important to us. We can certainly make up that fraction of time. Don't want OUR horses starting a Marathon like it was the Derby.
A driver has to work horse and expect, reinforce obedience, whether at home, or the starting gate. What is acceptable to one person, is not that important to another.
His name is Montana Light - She competed him to Advanced
I just have to expand on that and say Judy Canavan does a lovely job showing him now--we've seen him at Garden State and Elk Creek this year and he is a great boy. Such a nice horse! He and Merlin have enjoyed some quality hand grazing time together.
Great try Thomas If you would learn to keep posts in CONTEXT you would realize that the antsy horse in question is an ex-abused BARREL RACING horse covered in whip scars from making her run. I've mentioned this in MANY postings about her. She came to be traumatized with mental and physical scars that run very very deep. All I do with her is trail ride, and at the time of that posting she was terrified that a whip was coming every time she stopped or slowed. It took 3 years to get her back to a "sensible" state. After lots of long and slow training, she is now mostly fine with everything from standing still to saddling to grooming, etc. Obviously it is not normal that a horse cannot or will not stand still for a child to pat it. But one who has been beaten to run until she has thick black scars all over both hips - yeah - it's a special set of circumstances.
And yes, I do believe it's well known that I changed my user name, as I had a "Formerly..." statement in my signature line only for about 2 months or so.
So - try again.
Now back on topic - my experience with our TBs has always been very sensitive mouths. Even on the OTTB with over 40 starts. Even she was very sensitive and a KK Ultra was the only thing we ever used on her or the others. Well, ocassionally a different bit just to test it out, but they were never really "needed." In fact, the worst rear I ever experienced was on one of my mother pure TB mares. We always used the KK Ultra, and for some reason I put a normal single joint snaffle on her and she took considerable exception to it. She was very sensitive in the mouth and for horses like that, ordinary snaffles are just completely too harsh.
But I have to say GREAT photo! I love the look on the horse's face!
And as a multiple TB owner, I have to say that what I have heard/read about TBs as driving horses on this thread, I have to agree... it is not in their nature, physical make-up, brains (normally) to be good driving horses. Runners and jumpers, yes.
...because of the breed's long, low, racing type conformation, they (to me) tend to look ...(for the lack of a better word)... a bit <ahem> "doggy" in harness.
LOL, I totally agree with this. I've got a really funny pic of HRH Avery in the very early stage of his driving career where he looks like nothing other than a hunter who happens to have a cart attached! He was still figuring out the game at the time this pic was taken and, I think, was still learning his balance. It took him a while to start carrying himself better.
"The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief
What I know about driving a horse attached to a vehicle isn't worth a dime (though I do ground drive my own horses, and have standardbreds who obviously drove), I do recall most if not all the horses used for the chuck wagon racing up here are TBs. I'm sure that's not the ideal of a leasurely park-worth carriage team, but they do seem to drive them quite well. I like to grin when I see blinkers on them.
The last paragraph on this page talks about the thoroughbreds:
We broke four tb yearlings b ought at Keeneland fall sale, to harness.They were by Conquistador Cielo,and two different sons of Lyphard. ANd one by a a son of Northern Dancer. We trotted them 3 miles a day and then galloped a mile. As training progressed, on "work" days we just trotted 2 miles a day and worked a mile, always having our last quarter be our fastest. We raced two of these months later after a breif course under tack at the track and both were winners right off and very impressive to their riders. Why?? that is the interesting part....They went STRAIGHT. (due to the shafts we think), exceptionally balanced for 2 yo, and they were unflappable. They had had their early training at a standardbred training facility and got used to all manner of distractions....and behaved much like the reputedly much quieter standardbreds!! Much to our dismay, once we turned them over to trainers at the track (after they had broken their maidens off the farm in fine style) when we went back to visit them a few weeks later, there they were, KICKING out, pawing, gnashing at the bit when brought out into the shedrow...in other words, they behaved like all the other thoroughbreds. WHY?? The human element we thought. while in harness, between the shafts, they proved to be as tractable as any of our standardbreds....only when subjected to daily "riding" with the unavoidable lopsided weight in the stirrups that is typical , and the "cross" that they had to run into, plus the grooms ups and downs....only then did they show signs of being the "difficult" high strung thoroughbreds!!! THEY LOVED to be DRIVEN!!!!!
"Over the Hill?? What Hill, Where?? I don't remember any hill!!!" Favorite Tee Shirt
Lovely story, GTD, I'd loff to have seen it!! And again I was agreeing with you -they can be "doggy" but they sure can learn!
Jenger - no offense meant but please let's not go there on the chuck wagon races... I was intrigued when I first heard about them b/c they do use TBs.... But it's a sport I have a real hard time justifying now that I know a little more about it, I'm sorry to say. It just seems like such a shoddy repayment for the courage and heart of our brave TBs.
Claudius - wonderful story as well!! You don't happen to have any pics, do you?? Also - would it be dangerous to surmise that their diet and turnout schedule changed a lot once they were at the track? I would think that, in itself, would be enough to make them "act like TBs".
Parallel story of mine... As a very small child I was given an old War Admiral gelding who was my first OTTB. Apparently some racing trainers back then must have taken *much* more time and care starting youngsters than most trainers seem to now, b/c when I took it into my head to see if the old booger would learn to drive at age 17, I found to my complete astonishment that he already ground drove and long-lined quite admirably - in face HE taught ME how to do both! I was his first owner off the track and I knew the racing trainer who had him most of his career very well, and that guy didn't long-line or drive, so the Big Hoss couldn't have learned it anywhere except as a youngster. I've always been intrigued and very impressed by that.
"The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief
gothedistance, I loved your description of the TB hunter. One of the things I do not like about many carriage horses is the high head and knee action. Give me a long, low frame with a daisy cutting stride any day.
I've been told my Standardbred won't be competitive beyond training level because he lacks "presence". That suits me just fine.