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Update to Forum Rules: Criminal Allegations

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Standardbreds as jumpers?

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  • Standardbreds as jumpers?

    Considering a Standy mare as a potential lesson horse OR potential jumper for client.

    Any thoughts, comments or experience with the breed? I am not completely novice to standardbreds or gaited breeds, but nor am I an expert and they don't seem popular...or maybe people just hide what breed their horse is?

    Any unique things I should look for conformation wise to be able to assess ability to canter? Pretty sure the standarbreds in my area are all pacers.
    Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

  • #2
    I have a Standardbred that has started over xrails and he has potential. He has nice form over and tucks his front legs neatly. Sunny has a nice canter and does simple changes. We also started dressage about 5 months ago and he is excelling at this. There is another Stb at my barn that is an outstanding jumper and quite accomplished. Stbs are versatileand have an excellent work ethic. I think they can make a great jumpers!


    • #3
      I forgot to mention my Standardbred is bred to pace. He very rarely does and has a nice canter. Most people think he is a Warmblood...lol.


      • #4
        I've seen a few that can physically jump, but not well. The one's I've seen have really poor front ends and hang their knees considerably. I wouldn't be inclined to consider one as a jumper (though probably fine as a lesson horse) but every horse is different and if he jumps well and the rider likes him then go for it!


        • #5
          Originally posted by Wizard of Oz's View Post
          I've seen a few that can physically jump, but not well. The one's I've seen have really poor front ends and hang their knees considerably.
          Agreed. The handful I have seen have been game, but near-dangerous leg-hangers. There was one in my area showing in the jumpers a few years ago and watching him in the ring--especially in the jump-off took years off my life. It made me wish for a portable defibrillator.

          I did know a lovely dressage mare who was by a Dutch Warmblood and out of a STB mare. She really got the best of both worlds--great movement from dad and incredible soundness from mom.
          Life would be infinitely better if pinatas suddenly appeared throughout the day.


          • #6
            here's some video of a pacing bred mare back east. :-)

            The ninja monkeys are plotting my demise as we speak....


            • #7
              As with any horse, regardless of breed, you have to look at each individual's conformation for jumping: angle of shoulder and forearm, hip, stifle and hock angles, etc. If the conformation isn't there, a horse won't have a nice jump or scope, no matter what breed it is.

              Three-time Olympic gold medal winner Halla was a Standardbred-French Trotter cross. Here are some other successful STBD jumpers: http://www.standardbredfanclub.com/jumpers.html

              I love STBD's for their lovely minds and great feet. I would suspect that there are some out there listed as warmbloods or other breeds as some are quite lovely. I had a gelding who was a lovely mover, though more of a dressage type. They can be found, but you have to look at the individual and its conformation to determine if it's the right prospect. And for a schoolie? My mare had a heart of gold and taught several little kiddos the ropes.


              • #8
                Standardbred's are fairly common in our area, many people I have known purchase them off the track and retrain. The ones I have seen were level headed and good teachers. Which is great for local schooling shows but the form just wasn't there.

                The problems with their jump seemed to either be, uneven knees (one comes up nicely and one hangs back), or jumping inverted and rushing.

                One recently was 'excused' from a hunter schooling show this year because the judge felt her jump style could potentially be unsafe for the rider.
                (Very inverted and took huge long spots- gazelling with legs dangling all different directions).

                I don't mean to stereotype as it sound like 'equine racism' But I would stick with a breed with better odds of a good jump.


                • #9
                  I rode a Standardbred who was such a mare, full of attitude, and strongly opinionated. She paced, didn't like to trot (I had to ride her over random poles in the ring to remind her that she trotted now), and didn't have a great canter UNLESS there was a jump in front of her. I swear she enjoyed it. The only time I could get her to balance and provide some input was when we jumped. She was safe with form, and pretty reliable. It was every other aspect of her that was a disaster. LOL
                  The best sports bras for riders are Anita 5527 and Panache! Size UP in Anita, down in Panache (UK sizing)


                  • #10
                    To echo HenryisBlaisin', evaluate them as an individual, just like any other breed. I see many that are never really taught to get off their forehand and work through their backs, but they're far more tolerant and willing than most horses, so they jump anyway!

                    My old guy was a very safe and handy jumper before I retired him. I never jumped him very high (3' max) because I was worried about the pounding 222 races had put on his legs, but he loved it: https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-e...0/mkjump07.jpg (Sorry about the copyright, it's the only version I have on this computer!) I evented him in a snaffle and trusted him with my life.

                    His conformation photo from last year, at age 18: https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-W...%2520012-2.jpg

                    No one ever guesses his breed, and he held his own in open classes, even the baby hunter divisions. His canter tended to be a bit flat, but he did manage a true three-beat gait. Look at them as individuals, you might find a very nice horse.
                    Member of the Standardbreds with Saddles Clique!
                    They're not just for racing!


                    • #11
                      A few of the European warmblood registries used some French and Italian trotters as improvement sires back in the 50s. They found some who could jump!

                      I have a broodmare (and subsequently four of her offspring by Cyriz) with French trotter blood through a French trotter stallion named Fifi Beau Gosse. He was a GP jumper!!!!
                      Home of Sea Accounts xx
                      AHS/HV, ATA, GOV, RPSI, JC, AQHA, APHA, APtHA
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                      • #12
                        Can't speak to the show ring, but back when I was a kid I used to occasionally hack out with a lady MFH who rode a petite STB mare. That little mare outjumped my 16.3h OTTB six ways to Sunday! Never forgotten her. She was adorable.
                        "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief


                        • #13
                          I have a rescued STB, and once we got his trust, he's become an awesome boy with a great attitude. Everyone at our barn loves him. I do dressage with him, and he's a really nice mover. Sometimes when I let him loose in the ring he takes 2.5 jumps for fun and has pretty good form. We're doing ground poles and cavaletti and he's got some nice hock action. Also, don't want to jinx anything, but he's barefoot and really sound.


                          • Original Poster

                            The advertiser is being very difficult to get info from so may pass just on that; I don't like working to buy a horse! There is a photo of it free jumping and it jumps even and level in front, although not particularly tight below the knees.
                            Freeing worms from cans everywhere!


                            • #15
                              NowThatsATrot, he is GORGEOUS. No wonder you're so proud.

                              \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


                              • #16
                                definately depends on the individual horse. 3 out of 4 of my horses right now are standardred. one is retired and no way she would be suitable for anything other than light trail riding, very long back, slender build, high head carriage naturally. she is just a pet. one is about to retire (at age 14) and i hope to find him a home as a pet or light riding only, again he is a very slender built and long back (with a slight roach hes always had), i cant see him being comfortable with working hard under saddle. both are pacing bred and always trot in turnout.
                                my third standardbred is still racing (only 5) and i cant wait until he retires so i can ride him, short body, very compact, very sturdy looking horse, not the huge trot so many of than have and he canters in the paddock
                                i owned 3 other standardbred geldings previous to these ones, all that i had strictly for riding, one did beginner lessons at a hunter barn (he was 16.3hh and insanely thick and warmblood look to him), one did barrel racing and the other just pleasure riding due to a previous injury.

                                most pacing bred horses will trot, most standardbreds can be taught to canter if they dont already.
                                i do know a few who do/did jumpers and even one who shows smaller hunter shows and does well.

                                standardbreds are one breed with many many size/conformation variations.
                                look at the horse as a horse as an individual not just as a standardbred


                                • #17
                                  In my opinion you can’t judge a horses ability on its breed. I believe it’s based on the horses training. Obviously some horses are more talented than others. Those that say standardbred horses can’t jump are ignorant and have lack of research. I myself have a standardbred and have jumped 1.40m on him the picture attached is him free jumping 1.30m This standardbred can definitely jump and is one of the easiest horses I’ve ever trained. Brave and bold. Jumps anything
                                  Attached Files


                                  • #18
                                    Like anything it comes down to the horse in front of you. Standardbreds are bred to do a job - and that's not jumping. So many are unsuitable. But there are a few here and there that can manage to pack around a course. I knew one who was an adorable little eventer. But she was an exception in my experience. I know quite a few who flunked out of being jumping horses and were retired to pasture or trails.


                                    • #19
                                      Interesting, I've always thought of Standardbreds as athletic and versatile horses who tend to have a good mind, an ideal lower level jumper. Unfortunately there aren't very many around here, probably since we don't have any harness racing tracks.


                                      • #20
                                        I had a Standardbred mare in my twenties. She jumped very nicely with good form. Hunted, evented, showed, everything.
                                        She would fall back into a pace at the end of a long hunt which was a Godsend for comfort when one is tired.
                                        She was two years on the year end awards before I sold her. She never had a competitive stop anywhere.
                                        She was good natured, good looking and stylish.
                                        Eventually ended up at a big H/J barn as a lesson horse.
                                        Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique