Hanoverian NA Mare inspection - a chronicle of events

I plan to take my thoroughbred mare to a 2022 Hanoverian inspection in September, and will also be participating in the Mare Performance Test, both ridden and jumping portion.

I had a previous thread going where the COTH collective helped me decide on a bridle. I think I’ll go with the Lumiere, unless there’s some serious changes of hearts! Bridle for mare inspection

This thread is to chronicle all the lead up to the inspection, my preparation, etc.

I have been in contact with the host of the inspection to get the distances for their jumping chute, and plan to start refreshing my mare’s memory on that this weekend. I have free jumped her 4’+ in the past, and she’s very bold through a chute. I just haven’t done it in awhile. Every picture I see has white boots on the horse, which I don’t own. I’ll probably purchase an el-cheapo pair for the day of so I don’t stand out for the wrong reasons.

I have also worked briefly on teaching her to lift her neck and “pose” when stood up. Because I can’t run very fast (stumpy legs!) I am contemplating having one of their professional handlers do the inspection portion. I do have concerns that they won’t know how to get her to pose nicely with the cue I’m training in… any thoughts?

The ridden portion of the MPT I am honestly not concerned about. She can already do the movements required, I will just continue to develop her as I have been to make it bigger/freer. I’ve also been taking her to schooling shows so she gets experience in big environments off property. She typically settles nicely within a few minutes, so I don’t anticipate any problems for riding.

I’ll keep posting our progress as we go along - perhaps I’ll try and video our “inspection triangle” this weekend and post for critique.


Information about the mare -

Jockey Club registered “Shayney Mahaney”.

Pedigree: https://www.pedigreequery.com/shayney+mahaney

I don’t have a recent conformation photo, but here’s a GIF of some free jumping, and a photo from a show a couple weeks ago.



For the white boots -

Open front boots with a white shell and black straps/velcro drive me nuts. Open front boots with white everything are proving to be more expensive than I would like to spend.

Do you think white brushing/flatwork boots would look bad?

Like these:


I can get ones like this, but it’s more than I care to spend on a boot I won’t use again. I show her in my brown Veredus boots, so these would get immediately shelved.


1 Like

Sorry to keep blowing this up. Here’s our most recent dressage test, training 2. For the MPT I want her significantly more forward at the canter; the directives are the MPT is “not to be ridden as a dressage test, should be ridden well forward”. She knows how to come up and through “bigger” than in this sloppy test, but it isn’t something she can sustain for long, so lots of fitness work needed. I don’t know if she’s quality enough to get approved, but damn if we aren’t going to try.


She’s lovely. And so willing in the sloppy rainy weather. Thanks for sharing your journey. Where did you find her ? And what are your goals for riding and I’m guessing breeding in the future? My hunter brain loves her steadiness. Is she mostly aimed for dressage ? And hey the majority of the chances you miss are the ones you do not take. Kudos to you. Best wishes !!!


She is a Benchmark find, bought sight unseen without even a ride video, and then I had to go through hell to get her papers. She is the sweetest mare I’ve ever owned, she is steady but can get heavy and “luggy” on your hand, so lots of transitions and half halts are my friend.

I do wish for her to jump, but it’s not something she’s inherently good at. She seems clumsy, careless, and not sensitive to rapping a pole. That said, the highest we’ve jumped under saddle is 2’ so maybe as the fences go up they will get her attention.

The best way to describe her personality is that of “Dory” from Finding Nemo. Sweet. Tries hard. Not the smartest one.

Whoops, didn’t answer all the questions. I don’t really have a set goal for her. I’m just enjoying an overall easy baby who is a bit of a ditz. Honestly I’d loooove to get an appendix out of her, but I don’t know if I have the guts to breed her myself. This is more of a “well… can we do this?” for the inspections. It’s going to be a journey for us both!


Definitely connect with a handler. Find out if they will have their own whip person with them, or if they will want you to chase. You are correct - they want to see the horse really move - as they might if fired up in turnout. You should be able to schedule a few minute with the handler the night before or the morning of to discuss anything needed- but most of them are really excellent at getting the horse to show what they are capable of.


I don’t know what my opinion is worth, but I think she moves better NOT free. I would love to speak with a handler ahead of time, and have no qualms giving the reins over for that portion of the inspection. I am a bigtime rookie.

This video below is her sale video that I bought her off of a couple years ago - I think she moves better in hand, because she comes over her back more. My opinion is worth the napkin it’s written on though. She obviously is more muscled, balanced, and powerful now that she’s 5 instead of 3.

1 Like

Definitely pay a handler unless you can run fast. If there is a pro there they will be really good at setting up the mare so she shows well. When I took my mare ( not performance test but regular inspection) she was shown in hand and then they asked if I wanted for her to be shown free. So you will probably be given this option. If you think she will not show well this way then you can opt out.

For the performance test they will start small with the fences. Some of the mares will not be good jumpers and some of them will not be prepped well so the more prep you do the better. I don’t think anybody cares what kind of boots you use nor will they notice as long as the boots are conventional and safe. For the ridden test I would not be conservative with her gaits. Even though it is supposed to be judging raw potential the mares that are well schooled and ridden forward score higher than the mares that just putter around the arena or are very green under saddle. They will be looking for swing, elasticity and carrying ability - areas that TB mares usually do not score well on. So the more you can develop this the better you will do.

The people that have come to this area are very nice and encouraging and they give a good synopsis and explanation for the scores that they give. So it is a good learning experience.


Following with interest! I have a Westphalian mare and should probably get her inspected one of these days, but have no idea what is involved. She is anti-jumping and was a terror at the one jump chute clinic I took her to, so that might be a problem. Good thing she is meant for dressage.

1 Like

At least for Hanoverian, you can elect to only do the ridden portion of the MPT. I don’t know how any of this translates to the different books she could get into though - I’m sort of black-boxing that in my mind so I can focus just on doing the very best we can.

This is not going to be cheap, I will tell you that for sure.

1 Like

Inspection is September 22 - will I have to clip her a week or two ahead of time? What does the COTH collective think?

Can you use gymnastics to work on her jumping style?? In Reality (from her pedigree) is known in sport and hunters for horses who jump well.

1 Like

Her form is fine. Her give a shit is broken. She’s like a snow plow, and comes around and does it again. She’s not very bright, and not as sharp/sensitive physically as most thoroughbreds.

It has improved, and she’s still young - she will be alright. I’m going to start again on her chute work this weekend, I’ll video it and you guys can critique!

That’s why I wondered if gymnastics could help…even placing poles.

1 Like

They do, and they have. But this is never going to come naturally to her as it does to some. That’s ok, she’s got a lot of other wonderful attributes, and she’s tries very hard to do the right thing … she’s just not very intelligent or sharp.

At the beginning I kid you not, HUNDREDS of tries to make it over a cavaletti 10" off the ground. She’s always so chipper after messing up “ok let me try again!” you can’t possibly be mad at her, but jeez.

1 Like

It sounds like her JC name totally fits her! Fun and sweet and a bit silly. I wouldn’t worry too much about teaching her to pose - I echo others’ advice on just getting a pro handler. They will know how to set her up and show her best qualities. Plus, you get the fun view of watching your horse perform! The stress will be off of you and you can enjoy spectating as a proud owner.

I really like her breeding - she’s a great find!


1000% hire a handler. They have done this with 100s or 1000s of horses, many of whom they have never met until the morning of, or the day before. They also get booked fast, so start looking for one now.

Most horses do move “better” in-hand because they are asked to “hold” themselves, not just do proingy tense maneuvers when goosed by a whip, or are overly-stimulated by something they see/hear.

She IS lovely, you can see the quality in her movement in that video, and you can also see it’s tense and not as impulsive as it can be.

Do you mean coat, or whiskers? What sort of coat will she have? Unless you’re pretty far North, she’ll have some Winter coat poking through, but it should be more similar to Summer length, than Winter length. And, it will be fresh and healthy and shiny.

her comformatoin, from what I can see with a few still views of the video, don’t lend to super jumping form, so while all the placing poles and gymnastics can improve things, 1) you can’t improve past what her scapula and humerus allow, and 2) you don’t want to school her too much, for this purpose, or you risk taking some of the “wheee!” out of inspection day, which alone can show off her best jumping form

Some horses couldn’t get a rats arse about anything under 3’, or 4’, and suddenly they are Pro Level.

In your chute video, how much room is there from the last fence to the end of the ring? I would set up guiding poles coming into the setup xrail, so that she hits that centered. Her whole line is crooked, which encourages the uneven legs. And then on the landing side, I would place one end of a pole in top of the inside standard, and lay the other on the ground, to encourage her to jump straight and take at least 1 straight stride after the fence before diving off to the corner. In other words, use poles on the ground, and with an end up on a standard, to get her straighter.


The jump chute GIF was just me playing around last winter. I have very specific instructions as to how it will look at the MPT, including distances and spreads.

As soon as I get a minute to breathe, I will take a video of me sending her more forward and risk posting it for a critique. She is not a tense horse, she’s not nervous once she settles. I was asking her to not drop her poll so low by a stiffer half halt, which is where the tail swishing comes from. And no, I won’t send her way forward in those sloppy conditions, so there’s a lot more in that tank. :slight_smile:

Not current, but here are the photos from her sale ad. I’ll get new ones tonight.