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Older Age 20+ Horses Eventing

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    Older Age 20+ Horses Eventing

    We are so excited to be able to bring home my old pony club horse (who I had two foals out of). She has been semi-retired by a wonderful family and they are loaning her to us for a bit to teach my adult beginner mom how to event around amoeba/intro. The mare is 25 and still sound and well and I am hoping the continued light work will be safe and fun for both horse and human. I would love to hear stories of those older event horses still out doing their jobs and having a great time! Please share if you have them.

    #2
    My first event horse was 21 when he did his last event. He had a few years off doing low level jumpers on a lease and when he came back he was fit and ready to go as ever. I took him training level and it was like he never had time off. He was top three in all his events and would have won but we didn't go for time for obvious reasons.

    Another one of my old event horses was sold to a friend a few years ago, who is currently competing him at 20 now with no signs of slowing down!

    Comment


      #3
      I took a 22 OTTB through novice area championships in 2018. He also ran novice and training last year at 23.
      He has since had some soundness issues but he doesn't want to stop working. His pasture buddy ran intro at 30+ years old last year. Sadly he passed this spring due to old age.

      Another horse came out of retirement in 2017-2019 and ran prelim in her mid 20's. The rider was a vet and brought her back slowly to competing. She was very happy to be running around.

      Finally my friend is half leasing a 20+ year old former intermediate horse who is much happier working than sitting in a pasture doing nothing. I don't think they will compete but she is keeping him fit. If another client of my former trainer needs a horse to take around novice or below, he will be more than happy to storm around the show with them.

      Comment


        #4
        Oh! And I forgot my former trainers retired intermediate/3* horse. He had a pretty major injury at 19, rehabbed with an amature and now in his mid 20's is jumping 1.40 and up to prelim cross country. They occasionally do local schooling shows together but the rider has no desire to complete at the national level. They never expected him to come back to upper level jumping but I don't think that horse would be happy with anything else.

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          #5
          The management is more important than the age. My first OTTB competed eventing (N) well into his 20s, and that was after 70+ starts on the track...

          We love the golden oldies here. My barn had a TB (also off track decades ago) who stepped down from Prelim at around 24, but continued to cart around riders at BN-N for several years.

          It's a testament of a good program, when you have a 20+ horse still sound and happy in work.

          I have a 25 year old QH who still enjoys being ridden. I think keeping them in work is good for them. He looks great and people are always shocked he's "old".
          AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012

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            #6
            Mine turned 20 this year and is still kicking butt at Pretraining (Novice) level, which is my "happy" level. We had a go at Training last fall but I wasn't ready and she ended up sore, so I think we'll keep it at the PT level and below from now on just for my peace of mind haha.

            She's got a leasor right now who is going Entry (but will move up quickly) since I am about to pop with first baby. Mare still runs everything like it's Prelim - she adores XC and drag hunting and I intend to let her keep at it as long as she wants and her body can.

            Photos are of her making easy work of the Training stadium last fall just before she turned 20 and just last weekend at a HT with her leasor. People are so shocked when they hear how old she is; she thinks she's 6 and acts like it!
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            thebaybondgirl.wordpress.com

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              #7
              I have a 20 year old pony of unknown origin who's eventing at the lower levels. I imagine he could probably make it up to Novice/Training, but he's just starting his eventing career and I'm not sure I want to push him at his age.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by beowulf View Post
                The management is more important than the age. My first OTTB competed eventing (N) well into his 20s, and that was after 70+ starts on the track...

                We love the golden oldies here. My barn had a TB (also off track decades ago) who stepped down from Prelim at around 24, but continued to cart around riders at BN-N for several years.

                It's a testament of a good program, when you have a 20+ horse still sound and happy in work.

                I have a 25 year old QH who still enjoys being ridden. I think keeping them in work is good for them. He looks great and people are always shocked he's "old".
                So true! My first eventer I mentioned here also had 90 starts! Raced until 9, and raced everywhere from New Mexico, Florida, Alabama, Kentucky and Woodbine!!

                Comment


                  #9
                  My sister moved her first serious eventer UP to Prelim when he was over 20 (23 I think) He competed at that level for several years, including qualifying for, and completing the de Broke championship. He was an OTTB- raced to age 7.

                  I have a 24 yo TBxConn who has not competed in the last couple of years because of MY health issues. But I fully intend to compete her again (in eventing) this fall.
                  Janet

                  chief feeder and mucker for Music, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now). Spy is gone. April 15, 1982 to Jan 10, 2019.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I love this thread!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      this makes me happy- I have a 15 yr old pony who took my daughter to her first eventing competition. I hope he has another 10 years of teaching kids at the intro level. He loves it.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        If you keep them fit and don't drill them too much, I think a lot of horses can and want to keep going in their golden years. My 20 year old QH x Welsh is competing and winning at BN/N mini trials. He's also barefoot. We have to keep up with chiro for his back, but that's about it. I might hop him over the odd fence or two at home once a week, but he knows his job so well that we pretty much only jump courses at competitions. Our day to day training is hacking out for cardio and dressage for power and suppleness. He's the best he's ever been and we've had him over 10 years.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Not eventing, but: I have a 23 year old Welsh x TWH hony that's still cleaning it up in youth barrels. Until she tells me she's ready to stop, I'm gonna keep on letting her have her fun. She loves the kids who ride her, and is so careful with them.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            22 year old OTTB that's still out competing at BN toting around a leasee kid and loving life. 21 year old TBxConnie that's still competing N happily with her leasee kid and i expect she has a few more training level shows with her owner left in her - she doesn't act or show her age!

                            My first pony passed at ~45 but competed around Area 1 well into his thirties. That pony was famous he trained so many kids 😂

                            Comment

                              Original Poster

                              #15
                              How wonderful that so many are enjoying such long and happy careers

                              Comment


                                #16
                                A friend took a veteran pony to a show for her youngest child to ride on a lead rein. Didn't work out. The pony was so excited to be out and about once again that he bucked everyone off. The pony was 47 years old!
                                "Good young horses are bred, but good advanced horses are trained" Sam Griffiths

                                Comment


                                  #17
                                  My first horse trial (BN) was on a 22 year old who had gone Advanced with Sharon White earlier in his career. He was a machine.

                                  My trainer competed a 19 yr old to Intermediate. He then went on to do a couple years with a teenager going Training, and then another couple years with another rider going BN/N. Retired now but still casually jumps around with students time to time.

                                  Lots of maintenance! But their hearts and brains are worth it.

                                  Comment


                                    #18
                                    My old man (ottb, 25) is still in work and over the weekend just about jump me out of the tack x-country schooling showing me he's still got it I still ride him about 5-6 days a week and jump. I do a fair amount of pole work with him and jump him about once a week but I've always basically had that sort of schedule with him. I've had him since he was between 5-6 years old and kept the jumping to about once a week. He pinged over a 3'7" vertical last week like it was nothing

                                    Comment


                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by Larbear View Post
                                      My old man (ottb, 25) is still in work and over the weekend just about jump me out of the tack x-country schooling showing me he's still got it I still ride him about 5-6 days a week and jump. I do a fair amount of pole work with him and jump him about once a week but I've always basically had that sort of schedule with him. I've had him since he was between 5-6 years old and kept the jumping to about once a week. He pinged over a 3'7" vertical last week like it was nothing
                                      He (and you) looked GREAT!! No shortage of scope with your boy My riding boots are still wet, btw!! Vest is okay
                                      AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012

                                      Comment


                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by Willesdon View Post
                                        A friend took a veteran pony to a show for her youngest child to ride on a lead rein. Didn't work out. The pony was so excited to be out and about once again that he bucked everyone off. The pony was 47 years old!
                                        omg I love that!

                                        It reminded me that my first pony lived to 38, she never slowed down a bit. She was doing pony club well into her 30s. Bucked me off at least 3 times a day

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