This is a coming 6 year old (yeah, yeah, they are all born on 1/1 ) 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.
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. 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.