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Please comment on conformation??

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  • Please comment on conformation??



    How does this 5 yo TB 15' 3" gelding measure up for jumping/riding to hounds? he has a hairline fracture in his knee with a a very good prognosis..great temperament, ect..good feet. I have not seen him in person yet..he is on the track right now.

    His pedigree is Delaware Township by Notebook, out of Raise a Kiss. Please be as candid as you want..never had a TB..but am impressed with athletic ability.

    Big Thankyou
    ridin' high

  • #2
    Overall a nice, balanced picture. A nice, big eye, too. Mind and body look generally good. Feet look large and "thick" enough, doing credit to the TB's reputation for bad feet.

    Now I'll gripe in descending order of importance.

    Why does he look like his knees are slightly flexed? Does this count as "over at the knee"? I'll let others weigh in this, too. But if he has a knee issue, you will want your PPE to look around there and see if it suggests he won't hold up over time for the job you have in mind.

    His neck is a bit thin ahead of the withers and just *slightly* "upside down" higher up. This is odd because he's generally a fairly muscly guy (which I like). I don't think it will be hard to reverse that distribution of muscle in this horse-- putting more on top and less underneath. But I point it out because horses who lack muscle ahead of the withers will always have to work to keep it there. It will come last when in work and disappear first when let down. Many horses with this tendency, however, do their jobs remarkably well.

    Finally, I wish I could see him with his RH foot down. I suspect he's fine in the pelvis-- not goose-rumped. His muscling back there and over his lower back look good enough, suggesting he has the skeletal geometry to produce power back there.

    Certainly ask about wear and tear for the job you want, but I think he looks pretty useful and easy enough.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat


    • #3
      Is he a cribber? He looks a bit odd through the throatlatch area, which makes me think he's been wearing a collar. Also explains a bit of the underneck, if so...


      • #4
        As I said over in racing (and if you want actual foxhunting advice ask in the foxhunting forum--field hunter =/= show hunter) he's not set up well enough to really say. And most of what you really need to know for foxhunter prospects has to do with brains, not build, provided he's not grossly unsound (again, I'd pass on one with fractures.)
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        Steampunk Sweethearts


        • #5
          He's ewe-necked.

          I thought at first he had a cribbing strap on - can't tell for sure.

          His front legs are set too far underneath himself. I would expect to see him jump with his knees pointing down. I don't imagine this would be a desireable trait in a field horse.

          I'd pass...


          • #6
            Many OTTBs appear ewe-necked. They're not. They just haven't been worked in a way that overdevelops the top of the neck (they don't go in frame, they RUN.)

            The picture is just not very good, and I really would pass on one with a fracture for field hunting.
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            • #7
              He does have a really nice eye. I don't know if he actually stands like that up fron..if so I'd be a little concerned, but I can tell you we've had a number with hairline fractures and they have rarely, if ever, caused a problem with our racehorses, given the appropriate rehab time.

              I think you really need a different picture or to see him in person.


              • #8
                He's not ewe necked. And he has a good neckset - particularly a nice vertical chest front. Sometimes it's hard for people to look at a horse who has been ridden in such a way that builds the undermuscles and not the topline and understand what they are seeing.

                If anything his neck may be a bit long for the length of the rest of him, it will make him harder to keep straight but of course it can be done.

                The rest of him is hard to judge from this pic but overall he looks like a nice type.
                "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


                • #9
                  I love bays but if I were you I would pass. I would guess the knee injury is the left front??

                  His posture is telling me he has some issues behind and possibly his back? I would want to see him in person, watch him move.. etc. Training/correct exersize will definately help his apperance.....

                  But I don't like his neck. Hind is nice. Pasterns are too long.... and the joints look puffy..... I wouldn't be surprised if he had some issues in the front of the paster joints.... possible bone chips?

                  He looks small to me. I could not ride this horse I would look like a giant on him. But if you are smaller then it would be okay.'

                  There are many many nice TB's around for the taking but injury is always an injury and it stinks when you have issues down the road...

                  Sorry to be harsh but if you are anything like me I fall in love w/ my horses and injury just = heartbreak in my book.......
                  Live in the sunshine.
                  Swim in the sea.
                  Drink the wild air.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by mvp View Post
                    Why does he look like his knees are slightly flexed? Does this count as "over at the knee"? I'll let others weigh in this, too. But if he has a knee issue, you will want your PPE to look around there and see if it suggests he won't hold up over time for the job you have in mind.
                    My guess would be weighting the toes. The knee injury might create this stance but more than likely there is pain in the heel area or just in need of a trim.....
                    Live in the sunshine.
                    Swim in the sea.
                    Drink the wild air.


                    • #11
                      He is a bit over at the knee, but that generally doesn't cause problems, even in jumping horses. I like his huge hind end, though you cannot see angles, and his shorter back. His neck is structurally very nice, though the muscling is all on the bottom. He also looks very kind.

                      I would take a trip to look at him and watch him move, as long as the price is right.


                      • #12
                        I won't comment on his conformation, since it has been done many times over. I will say that I retrained a Notebook son for the hunter arena and he ended up being one of the kindest, boldest, most honest ammy hunters I;ve ever known.
                        You know, if you took this jello, put it in a mold and froze it, you could be like look....an emerald. Dude, I'd kick some guys ass he ever tried to give me a jello ring.


                        • #13
                          I'm not crazy about the way he's being set up, and we all know what a difference a bad picture can make. As an aside, I have a 7 year old Delaware Township son that is fabulous! Incredibly laid back ( the sort you NEED spurs with) that I use as a lesson horse. Athletic, talented, a really nice ammy's horse. Whatever you decide, good luck!
                          Different Times Equestrian Ventures at Hidden Spring Ranch


                          • Original Poster

                            great comments...

                            very helpful comments..! really appreciate your seeing some things I did not. eq trainer, I , too liked the way his neck tied in..to his chest, seems this would lend to him being lighter on his front end.

                            On the other hand..yes I NEED sound for a field hunter....

                            To the one who commented on his size..he is 15'3", and I'm 5' 7"..seems like a good fit to me..but my other horse is a 15 hand Arab and we fit e/o like a T..and I guess Ive gotten use to the handiness of his build...altho I know its short by many standards.

                            mainly..he was touted for his mind and attitude..which is easy and very good to work with..so those who commented on his breeding I found particularly helpful.! TB's can sure go the gammut in soundess and mindset...but they are so athletic, I am interested in letting that be my next horse.

                            Can anyone suggest good lines to look for..? High on my list are good bone, feet, and ,...a bay, nice eye..not huge..oh..don't get me started.

                            great comments tho..ya'll are good!!!
                            ridin' high


                            • #15
                              Balanced overall, nice head, nice eye. Perhaps a little thick through the throatlatch and he is slightly ewe-necked (note the dip in front of the wither), but correct training will help develop that topline. A lot of TB's here I find come off the track with the upside-down neck because they are holding their noses to their chests in training, plus the rest of the time they are running around with their noses to the air and hollow, thus building incorrect topline. One of ours was such an example - I had to wait a bit for the incorrect muscling to disappear and then am now currently working on building correct muscling. On the other hand, if his neck's skeletal structure were absolutely correct, he would not build quite the ewe neck he has - all in all though it is relatively minor and does not look to be a serious flaw. Does he have sufficient room (a fist) between his jawbones (underneath) at his throatlatch? I would want to make sure he has sufficient space there, considering his throatlatch looks a tad tad thick. His neck ties in nice and high though, which will enable a bigger reach and thus more speed and power in the front; he should also be lighter. His fronts are not set too far beneath him (look at how far forward they are in relation to his withers), however I am concerned about how he is holding his left front knee - he is holding it as if he is back at the knee (though I doubt he is). It is not a major concern, but something to keep in mind. I have an OTTB who holds both his knees as such yet he remained sound on the track and has remained sound with me. I like to see a bit of a deeper barrel, but he is ok. He looks to have a good topline and seems proportionate, though I find it difficult to judge with that hind cocked. His legs appear to be tight, but you are going to have to feel the joints and legs to make sure. I like his shoulder and pastern angles, and I actually like their length - he will be smooth but his pasterns are not overly long. His feet are ok - I like to see BIG feet, but maybe I am being a bit extreme now because I am so tired of seeing the tiny feet on these Thoroughbreds, haha. His hocks appear to be a bit high for my liking. Overall, he is a good looking guy and has no real "major" flaws that would scream out a huge "no" to me. I would not pass him up until you see him in person and see him moving and working. I might not worry about the fracture itself, but I would worry about why he has it. Was he simply trained and run too hard? Or is it due to a conformation/skeletal (ie. lack of bone quality) flaw? I would also consider how he ran in determining his mindset (was he competitive?) and future soundness. How about any siblings and his parents? How did they run/are running?? Their talent, flaws, break-downs, successes - all can help you determine this guy's outcome.

                              I am not really well versed in my Thoroughbred bloodlines, but I would definitely recommend anything with Young Devil in it - we currently own a gelding by him and I have seen a young mare with YD as her grandsire: both possess excellent, honest minds. That is a bloodline though that is likely only up here in AB, Canada - they're not the fastest or most competitive of the bunch!!

                              I also really like Linkage (Hoist the Flag x Unity Hall) and Secret Intrigue (Legal Prospector x Silique) - their foals seem to be extremely competitive, incredibly athletic and seem to stay sound (good feet, too!). I have not quite figured out which side is the most successful side, but I would be interested in horses either out of that mare (bred in BC) or by that stud (Kentucky-bred). They're a little more challenging to work with but have a lot of potential athletically. Not sure where you'd find them though, either. I have vowed to find foals out of the two above the minute we find property - I want more of them!! Haha.

                              Otherwise, I cannot really help you there, hopefully someone else can fill in that spot :P
                              ....horses should be trained in such a way that they not only love their riders, but look forward to the time they are with them.
                              ~ Xenophon, 350 B.C.


                              • #16
                                not a big fan. They're are much nicer prospects than this one.
                                "ronnie was the gifted one, victor was the brilliant intellect, and i [GM], well, i am the plodder."