Friday, January 6, 2017

My First Ride On Janie

Brooke Simms is a great young horse trainer in Texas. When I first saw any of her work she was much younger. I was impressed and I sent her a note letting her know that. She read my book and decided that she wanted Janie, a yearling off of her spectacular HOA stallion, Blazing Guns, to be part of our program.

Needless to say I was very honored by both the sentiment and the gift. Ann Katherine did much of the early ground work with her and did her earliest work under saddle. Abigail picked it up from there and got her to the point that she could be described as green broke.

And today I rode her for the first time. We went down the path and around the new land. She did great--paid attention to everything--one bad spook and instantly settled down--she cantered for a very short trial (quite promising). I like to build muscle and power in young horses by long trotting them for at least a year before they jump anything with me on them or even canter more than fifty yards at a stretch. So far this system gives me the kind of horse that I want--powerful, smooth, light and responsive.

Carrying me builds muscle and tremendous strength on these horses. Those who do not know any better scoff self righteously at adult riders of small Colonial Spanish horses. They have to fall back on their last and irrefutable argument "Well even if he seems to be doing ok now he will have problems when he gets older."

Those who actually ride these horses know that the opposite is true. As older horses they are much sounder and stronger than modern horses. This is especially true when they are allowed to live their long lives as horses evolved to do--grass, hay, water, sunshine and herds. Instead of being condemned to suffer through a life of stables, shoes, and sugar.

Janie is going to be one of my main personal riding horses over the next several years--and I am looking forward to those years.

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