Sunday, December 28, 2008

Saddle Trials, Weeks Two through Five

As a round, plump, muscular horse yet with prominent withers, Delphi is proving challenging to fit.

My barn buddy Angela's 17 1/2" 31cm tree Courbette dressage saddle:
Pros: it fit me well and was comfortable to sit.
Cons: when astride it pinched Delphi's withers.
Bottom line: it didn't fit Delphi.

The next item on order to test ride is the Jaguar by Harry Dabbs 17 1/2" seat wide tree XKC deep seat dressage saddle: Pros: deep seat, relatively large knee blocks and buffalo leather provide security; wool flocked panels that sit away from the horse's spine since the saddle is wider through the gullet; higher, wider pommel to accommodate the withers
Cons: unknown commodity English-made saddle so am wary of the quality; if horse changes shape saddle can't be adjusted due to no interchangeable gullet system
Bottom line: the wide channel cleared her spine well, however when seated in the saddle the flocking under the pommel pressed into the muscling on either side of her back causing pressure to her spine behind the withers. It's possible that some of the flocking could be removed from the panel to adjust fit, but I dislike the idea of digging into a brand new saddle that does not fit from the outset.