TB Pedigree - thoughts?


This is a coming 6 year old (yeah, yeah, they are all born on 1/1 :stuck_out_tongue:) owned by a student of mine. She got him from Phyllis Dawson, who can clearly spot talent!

He is a lovely boy!, very nicely put together, uphill, short-coupled, nice hock angulation and very athletic. Three good gaits, though we are working on getting him to stretch more over his topline. He’s a narrower type, was very wiggly at first but is getting stronger and straighter - not a huge tank - and about 16’1”. He will be very fancy, and is making nice progress already.

He has some little “quirks” (we are successfully ironing them out), and used to be a bit “histrionic” about things that he considered difficult; he can be a bit of a Drama King. But SO sweet! I do a little bodywork and poll release and now he lurves me and follows me around like a dog and puts his head on my shoulder and blows in my ear. :smile:

She is working on basic dressage with me and he has improved by leaps and bounds in just 6 months - he’s a very quick learner and a good brain. She started him over small fences a bit last year with another trainer (before she started working with me) and he was WILD - took off bucking after the jumps, rushing, crooked, tense - but fine when jumped “on the long line” over various cross country jumps (showed a good bit of talent and athleticism), so IMO it’s more “emotional” with him, and he needed things “chunked down” and more time taken. I took them back to basics, and we have been getting him comfortable with poles on the ground, trot and canter cavaletti, etc. - this has transformed his attitude towards jumping and he is now much more relaxed and confident; he is able to figure out the footwork, maintain a rhythm, and focus on the job - calm and forward.

He has this funny little thing he does in canter transitions. He has a loffly canter - but is still working on strength in the upward transitions, pushing off from behind and not lifting his head and inverting slightly. When my student prepares him perfectly for the transition (a little haunches in to shoulder fore in a corner, putting the weight on the outside hind and getting him balanced before asking) he will sometimes buck, and that’s the only time he does. It’s almost as though he realizes that “I’m in perfect balance now and it’s HARD”, so this is his little protest. It’s hilarious, and we work him through it; his transitions after the token protest are much better. :smile: He has had these little hissies here and there about things (way fewer now), but once you work him past it (and then immediately allow him to be done!), he absorbs the lesson and is much better the next time.

VERY smart horse. I think the above ^^ is the Storm Cat coming through.

He appears to have a very good pedigree for sport, especially on top! Nureyev SO close!, but I thought I would post on here and get more insights.


My past 3 (including present) OTTBs have done—and do that. One did it going to the right which enabled him to get a right lead. One did it to the left when he got frustrated. My current guy does it to the left because he’s more agile that direction when he’s just so full of himself he can’t stand it. And it’s not a “buck like I want to get you off”–it’s more like a “kick out to the side because I can”. Why? I can only guess! My current guy just doesn’t get ridden enough—that’s on me. And same as you said. When we do something great and what I’m after, I stop. I don’t care if it’s 15 minutes or 50. Today it was drop your nose down to the ground and stretch—which is what I’m after. He was a little jiggy at first but nothing like his normal level and we got to that in about 30 minutes. And I haven’t been on him in a couple weeks.

In my opinion and experience only with my guys—(I’ve had OTTBS only since the 1970s), each one is so smart and stresses mentally over different things. This guy likes the riding attention. My previous guy liked attention but was super chill and really a big horse, so things were harder for him and he didn’t like the effort. My other previous guy had a brain that never stopped, and he tried so hard that if he was AT ALL confused, he kicked out and squealed. So we stop, go back to something easy and try again. I love them all. I don’t think it has a lot to do with bloodlines, other than my Noble Causeway/Giants Causeway guy was the big, more chill of the 3. He was SO sweet and calm. My Malibu Moon guy now comes from a line that is supposed to be …not difficult…but moody? Can be brilliant but can be a toot too. That’s totally him and don’t mess with him while he’s eating his feed. Hay is OK but…blanketer beware!

So…I chalk it up to a funny OTTB thing and as they get stronger and learn more, they don’t feel the need to express themselves that way.

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I look at that pedigree and think man, that’s going to be a firecracker of a hot horse. I have minimal experience with Grand Reserve, but the horses I have known by Theatrical and Parker’s Storm Cat have been pistols. That’s not necessarily a bad thing; a lot of people want that kind of ride. Like having a pocket rocket.

But Theatrical was just so lovely. And my memory sucks, but I swear to you there is an upper level horse with Parker’s Storm Cat up close. I’m just totally blanking on who that is. It will come to me.

Nothing about your description of his type or behavior surprises me with that page. Those are some prepotenent genetics. :rofl:

ETA: This is going to bug me all night but I swear to you I have seen a Parkers Storm Cat competing at FEI levels recently. But I always go “oh duh” and remember to point out 5* horse Sea of Clouds by Parkers Storm Cat’s slightly more famous (lol) half brother.


Ha! Thanks guys - this is both amusing and illuminating!

This guy is not “hot” in the usual sense of the word, at all. He does have opinions about things, and when it’s “hard” he can have these wee little snits - but they are transitory. It’s like he needs to be re(assured) that he can do it - and it’s not actually as hard as he thinks it is! As he gets stronger and more balanced he improves his attitude, and he really is a sweet and willing horse at heart.

Mountains out of molehillls. :wink: His rider is good at shutting down the BS, correcting him promptly, and moving on with things - and I give her lots of props (and encouragement) for being decisive and confident. She has his number. We give him lots of breaks and praise when he gets it right (and allow him to process), and this seems to be working. He is a transformed horse in a matter of 6 months, though will throw shit out there at random times (like the canter transitions) so still has those baby moments.

Really, though - I love this horse! Thanks for the insights :blush:

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