Thursday, May 19, 2016

Clydesdale performance

Years ago, I ran a mobile tack shop that traveled with the A show hunter/jumper circuit. One of our most frequent stops was Brownland Farm in Franklin, Tennessee.
It was there that I saw something I never expected to see: a purebred Clydesdale showing in the hunter ring at a big A show.
From the moment he stepped into the warm up ring, that Clydesdale was an instant celebrity. He was the talk of the show. Everyone came out to see him. Everyone wanted to ride him.
Of course, he didn't win a single ribbon.
That's the thing. As cool as that Clydesdale was, he just wasn't an A show hunter. He didn't look like one, he didn't move like one and he didn't jump like one.
The model horse world is a lot more accepting of "off" breeds than the hunter world. Still, I can't help but think that I am handicapping myself by choosing a galloping Clydesdale as my main performance horse at Springamathing. Fortunately, I'm not in it for the prizes. I really love this horse, and I think he looks awesome in tack. I want to show him just for the sheer fun of showing him.
I bet that's how the owner of the Clydesdale at Brownland felt, too.


  1. OMG, I can't WAIT TO SEE HIM in action at Springamathing!!! :)

  2. We've had a full percheron show at our local shows. His owner proudly told me, "This is my horse and he didn't like being a cart horse so now we're going to be hunters!" She didn't win a single ribbon either, but she sure did have fun. Links to pics below if you want some Drafter hunter documentation:

  3. If I can win with a running horse, you can too!

    1. Well, my chances of winning are already greatly improved since you aren't planning to be there this year. However, I do think it's easier to show a galloping stock horse than a galloping Clydesdale!

  4. I know those feels. My first performance horse is going to be a stock horse mare. Perhaps not the best choice, but I just love her. I think she'd be adorable with a child rider.

  5. When I was in 4-H as a kid, all kinds of weird stuff showed at the local open shows- I wish I had pictures. I most vividly recall the purebred Saddlebred who did speed events and show jumping in addition to saddleseat, strangely and with great enthusiasm. I dearly wanted to take my friend's Swedish Warmblood into the western pleasure ring, but never got the chance. He was built like a hunter-type QH more than anything- low-set neck, very low action daisy cutter type of a guy. I taught him to jog in an afternoon and he was super laid back. Shame it never happened.

  6. I love him. He's perfectly Purdy. You go gurl!!!