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Where are all the quality eventers for sale?!?

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  • Where are all the quality eventers for sale?!?

    This going to be more of a rant than a question, really, but I'd still love your input.

    First, let me acknowledge that I'm aware I have ridiculously high standards for the money I'm prepared to spend (less than $50,000 please, but really, the more bang I can get for my buck, the better!). Second, I also acknowledge that I may never find a horse that meets all of my requirements, but I'd like to think that I will.

    So, without further ado, I'm looking for my next partner-in-crime: an eventer with some experience that is an above-average mover (in case I just want to do dressage) and jumps like a quality showjumper with his knees up to his eyeballs. Ideally, I'd like something that has competed at training level at least because my job doesn't afford me a lot of time for training a young horse at this juncture. I have a lot of experience myself, though, so a younger horse is not completely out of my options. Really, I just want a horse with upper-level potential to take me up to levels past where I have competed in the past (competed through Preliminary).

    Aside from several barns located overseas, I'm finding it extremely difficult to find any quality horses that match my specifications. There are tons of "eventer prospects" that are too young and a handful of "experienced eventers" that are too old and/or unattractive. I know there are "quality" event horses out there somewhere, so my question is WHERE ARE THEY?!?

    In all honesty, they should be all around me. I live in Virginia, the "eventing Mecca" to many, but I'm telling you there are some highly-priced, really unattractive horses here. In fact, I've found that most horses for sale in the U.S. typically are over-priced for their experience level.

    At this point, I'm most impressed with the horses being presented in the Hanoverian auctions at Verden. They are great quality, and their price depends on their popularity. I've been watching the auction results for about two years now, and I've found that the ones I like typically go for anywhere between 8,000 and 30,000 Euros. Jumpers seem to be cheaper than dressage horses, etc. My only problems with them are that most of them lack any eventing experience, and there's no way of knowing what they will be like when you get them home. But, I'm not sure I want to sacrifice talent for experience.

    Any ideas where I should be looking?

  • #2
    Well, I see horses like this every week on Sport Horse Nation for sale for at least half that price.

    I also see a tonne of Thoroughbreds with a jump like that and nice movement coming straight off the track... I don't know how you can't find them.

    There was a great thread a while back that had countless links of talented, fancy, eventers for sale.
    Boss Mare Eventing Blog


    • #3
      sent you a pm of where I would look

      also saw this ad:



      • Original Poster

        Thanks! I'll definitely check where you suggested. I saw that horse on eventingnation, too. This is kind of what I was getting at - it's an attractive horse, but definitely not worth that price. I'd also prefer a better mover. I'm probably looking for the nonexistant here, but I love "big movers" like you typically see in dressage. I'd like to find a "big mover" that also jumps well.


        • #5
          Kelli Temple has a couple nice ones up on her site (if that Watermill Time horse is still for sale, he is absolutely stunning in person): http://www.kellitempleeventing.com/horsesforsale.html
          She also goes shopping abroad and could probably help you coordinate that if it's something you were interested in.

          While I know it's a personal preference, it seems silly to me to write off a horse solely because he's "unattractive"- if he fits all your criteria, are you really saying you wouldn't buy him because he's ugly? No points for pretty in eventing, and you've set a lot of high standards on a limited budget in your criteria.
          Balanced Care Equine


          • #6
            My friend runs a sale barn full of NICE and QUALITY eventers. Check out www.aehorses.com- not sure where youre located though. Shes in nor-cal. She has a fabulous irish sport horse for sale right now. http://www.aehorses.com/brogan.html


            • #7


              • Original Poster

                Perhaps it's my hunter/jumper past coming back to haunt me, haha. Let me clarify, though - the horse doesn't have to be "pretty" per se, but it must be a good mover and a good jumper. Color, markings, etc. are of little concern to me. I am most concerned with finding a horse that has some experience, jumps correctly, and moves well enough to just be a dressage horse.

                Watermill Time is a good example of the kind of horse I'm looking for. Benny de Ruiter in the Netherlands also has a number of horses that look promising.

                Thanks so much for your input!


                • #9
                  Are you sure you want a dressage mover with big bascule and to try to get to upper levels eventing? The problem there is you will have an awful lot of trouble making time.

                  A horse going prelim tends to have tens of thousands added to its price. If a horse is going training well, moving as nicely as you want, and ready - the owners are smart to hang on and go prelim with it for the jump in price probably to far beyond your budget.

                  My horse is an OTTB who fit your description exactly when he was for sale, but I think you would have turned your nose up at him. At the time, he was 7, needed dressage basics re-installed because he had bad habits he'd never gotten over since the track which he still got away with eventing because of his movement, he gets good gait scores and was scoring in the low 30s and finishing on his dressage scores going Training. You probably would have thought he didn't have enough suspension or something, and that he didn't bring his knees up enough. He doesn't tend to bring his knees up a lot until around 4' - everything else is just easier and it's not necessary. Also, fixing the dressage work has improved his jumping form all the time because he uses his back end better. He certainly had upper level scope, too. However, he was likely to have trouble making time because his gallop... well, it looks like a dressage horse. Not exactly efficient.

                  My point is, I don't think you are being too picky - I think your priorities are a bit confused and conflicting. What are you looking for a horse to do? Pick the traits you want based on that.

                  (Personally, I think there's nothing wrong with wanting "pretty" as long as you're looking for specific other traits, too. I no longer care about pretty even though I think my horse is gorgeous, but think if that's what you want there's nothing wrong with it.)
                  Originally posted by Silverbridge
                  If you get anything on your Facebook feed about who is going to the Olympics in 2012 or guessing the outcome of Bush v Gore please start threads about those, too.


                  • #10
                    What about looking at the recent YEH winners, or at least the farms they came from and their siblings?


                    • #11
                      The horse in the SHN ad is schooling 3rd level, has done 2 seasons of foxhunting (so he is not a fruitcake), he's competed at Novice (so you know he can go out on XC by himself). And he's easy enough for an amateur to ride.

                      That package, to me, is why he's priced where he is. Cheaper horses are cheaper for a reason. They are difficult somehow, or have a soundness issue, or haven't proven themselves. Someone's put some time into that guy.

                      I also agree with netg - the big dressage mover will probably not have much of a gallop for XC.


                      • #12
                        I have very recently been in a similar situation! I was looking for one a little bit greener (and less pricey), but also a quality prospect for the upper levels, ideally Advanced. I live just outside of Ocala, so, like you, expected there would be a lot of options, but just couldn't quite find what I was looking for. I ended up driving out to Jim Graham/David Adamo's farm in Alabama and actually found two that I really, really liked. I rode several while I was there and all were lovely young horses, but I really fell in love with those two. Jim and David were great to work with as well. It's definitely worth looking at their website, http://www.meadowrunfarm.com - I know it has been updated recently but they are also expecting to get a few new horses in around the New Year - or giving one of them a call. It might not be the area of the country you would expect, but I was overall very impressed with Jim and David, their facility, and the horses that they had for sale. Best of luck!


                        • #13
                          Yeah, if a horse schooling 2nd/3rd, evented Novice, foxihunted, and Ammy friendly isn't worth 30k, I can see why you're having difficulty finding something.
                          Third Charm Event Team


                          • #14
                            Phyllis Dawson always seems to have nice horses for sale, ranging from youngsters to more seasoned competitors. Look up Windchase and she has a whole sale page usually.

                            I have also seen a few horses on Boyd's page for sale (granted I am guessing they are in the $50000+ category but you never know) that look to be quite nice.

                            Windfall also has some nice progeny for sale here in the Midwest (look up New Spring Farm).

                            I would say looking for connections via BNT or BNR or making a trip to Aiken this winter would be helpful too.
                            "Lord if we should fall, my horse and I, please pick my horse up first."



                            • #15
                              You need a Saddlebred. The ones that are built more 'forward-headed' but with the substantial build that comes from the five-gaited bloodlines are extremely well suited to eventing/jumping/dressage. You will get a lot of horse for the money, because very few Saddlebred breeders are even aware that there is another use for their product than the saddle seat show ring.
                              RIP Sasha, best dog ever, pictured shortly before she died, Death either by euthanasia or natural causes is only the end of the animal inhabiting its body; I believe the spirit lives on.


                              • #16
                                Otter Creek

                                I sold a very nice Irish Draught through Jenny Warner at Otter Creek. It is a great place to get a horse started eventing as well. PatO


                                • #17
                                  Adding to my above... there is a nice looking (albeit maybe a bit greener than what you are looking for but fancy nonetheless) KWPN at Boyd's right now:


                                  Windchase looks to have a handful that may catch your eye.


                                  NSF doesn't seem to have too many that seem to be what you are looking for but maybe I'm wrong:


                                  Allison Springer is selling Burger..... guessing he is more than $50000 though


                                  Hope that helps! Good luck with your search!
                                  "Lord if we should fall, my horse and I, please pick my horse up first."



                                  • #18
                                    A friend of mine purchased a gelding at this years November Verden auction, and she plans to event him a bit while he is young before he becomes a full time dressage horse. He certainly has all the quality you could want, and she got him for 22.000 euro. He has some jumping experience, but no eventing experience, however will be in full training at our Eventing/Dressage barn. Maybe you should consider importing a 5 or 6 year old and putting him in training for a few months to get some mileage.


                                    • #19
                                      The "Top Eventers" sale in Germany has some nice horses each year. Elmar Lesch seem to know where the event prospects hang out. They sell for reasonable prices too. The sale has concluded for this year, but it is likely that Elmar knows of a bunch more prospects.


                                      • #20
                                        This farm takes OTTBs, that are thoroughly vetted before purchase, and retrains them, including extensive competing.


                                        They have a nice program and seem to be producing some nice horses.

                                        And, the TBs are pretty awesome for eventing IMO.