I just moved back to the States after spending a few years in Germany. I was wondering what the lease market is like right now? In a perfect world, is it possible to find an older schoolmaster lease? I would be working with a silver medal professional that is herself working with a gold medal professional and the facility is top notch. I had an I-1 schoolmaster lease in Germany and learned quite a bit and was also able to take some lessons on a GP schoolmaster. I haven't had the opportunity to compete above 2nd level but would love to finish my bronze and start my silver. Is it realistic to find something to lease within these parameters?
Leases on Upper Level horses aren't very common here in NA, as far as I know. I have heard of Junior/Young Riders getting leases to go to championships like NAJYRC, but I believe those are all set up by word of mouth versus the lease being advertised. That being said, I just got a lease on a GP stallion so it can be done! Good luck in your search!
I think Xpression is right. In most of the areas I've lived in, there aren't a lot of people with upper level schoolmaster types. In most places the cost of keeping a horse is too high to keep one around as a lesson horse unless it's the trainer's or BO's retiree who is going to stay around anyway.
I think your best bet is to try to find a private owner who is looking to save on expenses for an upper level horse or who might not have time to ride everyday. I know of a couple of people personally who have been on one side or the other of this situation. It might not be the norm, but if you are a confidant rider and have good connections, you should be able to find something.
I'm hoping to find something where the owner doesn't have the time for the horse at the moment for whatever reason and needs someone to care for the horse and take over the expenses for a bit. It doesn't have to be something that's going to get someone qualified for the NAYRC or anything fancy- just something trained well with a good brain. In Germany there were older upper level horses everywhere but also a lot of crazy people so it took a while before I found a good situation but when I did it was wonderful and really hard to leave That was also a half lease situation though since the country is so much more condensed than in the States. I still drove an hour one way to get to the barn but having an I1 schoolmaster and a GP trainer made it worthwhile! (And sometimes get a lesson on a GP horse- yay! )
It's nice to hear through this thread and few PM's that it does sound like it's possible to find the right situation if I'm patient and utilize my horse contacts so that makes me happy!
Still miss my little (17.2hands) german dressage pony though... Luckily I became best friends with the owner so we message each other almost daily and I know what he's up to and I can make sure she's feeding him enough carrots