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Hunter to Eventer, another one joins the dark side!

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  • Hunter to Eventer, another one joins the dark side!

    Hello all

    I am (well my horse is) making the switch from hunterland to eventing. My horseless friend want to take him to a few events this summer, since I can't afford to show.

    I will be moving to a fantastic eventing-based barn, and I'm really excited. However, this will be quite a change for my guy. I will be putting him on outdoor board, since our current place has very limited turnout, and it's been really hard on him. He seems happiest when he's out (And I can't afford the price of indoor board at this lovely place lol!)

    My new BO is very confident that he will adjust well, and will be monitoring him closely. The paddocks are very big, have round bales, heated water and huuuge shelters, and small groups in them, but I still worry about how he's going to be.

    My other worry is his adjustment to eventing. He has schooled cross and seem to enjoy it, and he's super brave, but it's a big change for him, he's a " more mature" gentleman at 14, and I worry that this may be asking a lot of him at his age.

    Again, I have tons of faith in the staff at my new place, but he's my heart, and I want what's best for him.

  • #2
    Aww fun! The last competition I ever did with my children's hunter was BN at the Marlborough Horse Trials. He was 14 or 15 and it was his first event. I bet your guy will enjoy it
    The big guy: Lincoln

    Southern Maryland Equestrian


    • #3
      If he's fit enough for the level, I wouldn't worry about over-stressing him. Just make sure he's properly conditioned- including working on hills and over different terrain, and fit enough to do all 3 phases in a day. What level are you planning to do? Most horses (even the old ones) have no problem with novice or below. And 14 really isn't THAT old...

      If he's ridden on a consistent basis (4-5x/wk), he probably won't even need additional fitness work for BN or N. Those levels are not quite as hard on the horse as I think most outsiders think


      • #4
        Don't worry at all about his age - I started my QH "eventing" (low unrec stuff only, more due to my incompetence than his lack of ability) at 13 and he lapped it up. We had trouble with the dressage, but he was great SJ & XC - especially XC, which he was a total rockstar at. Dressage took some time, but we significantly improved our scores by year 2, after a winter of flatwork only.

        I think it's fun for the older guys to do something fresh and different. This horse was completely out of work when I got him, but we started realllyyy low (like cross rails) and worked up to Novice before his arthritis acted up too much.

        If the horse is generally physically fit/healthy he should have no problems at BN and N. Our "conditioning" consisted of trail rides once or twice a week - practice on lots of different types of terrain - and trot sets, but nothing particularly intense.

        Have fun, I am very jealous!
        "Choose to chance the rapids, and dare to dance the tides" - Garth Brooks
        "With your permission, dear, I'll take my fences one at a time" - Maggie Smith, Downton Abbey


        • #5
          I took my sister-in-laws open jumper and started him eventing at 14. He did his frst long format one star at 16 and adored it retired from eventing at 17 due to bowed tendon in the field while on vacation from his 3rd one star. Hewas terrific and very healthy more so than in his showing career.


          • #6
            My older gelding did his first "real" event when he was 18. Before that we had done some cross country in Pony Club, but we hadn't competed. He had a blast a Novice and the only reason we stopped is college got in the way. Unfortunately I am just now finishing grad school and he is 30, so no more events for him. Though he is still pretty sound and thinks he should be ridden instead of the youngsters. I think the only think you have to worry about is getting the three of you, him, your friend, and yourself hooked on eventing....Welcome to the dark side....we often have cookies.