Even though I'd never touched a Thorowgood saddle in my life before one arrived on my porch on Friday, I was feeling confident that this eBay saddle would fit. I assumed that I'd end up ordering a slightly wider gullet bar than the medium it came with, but that the tree shape would be right, based on everything I've read about Thorowgood/K&M/Fairfax saddles and cobby backs.
|Almost perfect, pending the arrival of the medium wide gullet bar.|
Fits exactly like I thought it would. Great contact with his back all the way down, but just a hair too narrow in the gullet.With a slightly wider gullet, it'll be a perfect fit in front, and perfectly balanced front to back.
|Liiiiiitle too high.|
Fortunately, Thorowgood has a saddle fitting "worksheet" available on their website. It allows you to use a flexible rule to both figure out what shape of tree your horse needs (high wither vs. normal vs. low), and what side gullet bar they need. You shape the flexible rule against the horse's back or withers, and lay it against the sheet to determine sizing.
|Point billets and movable velcro blocks.|
Connor came out to be a Medium Wide, so that is on order and will be here soon. But before I pulled the trigger on that, I rode one lesson in it to make sure I liked it well enough to keep it (and my trainer approved).
|Connor not wanting to play my reindeer games.|
And I gotta say, I'm pleased. It strikes just the right balance of encouraging good position and not forcing me into a good position. It's a 17" and I almost could use a 16.5, but that just means I've got a tiny little gap between my butt and the cantle, making it less restrictive.
|The seat, knees and a panel behind the thigh are leather, while the rest is synthetic. Also, it's wool flocked.|
It also made some of my biggest positional issues a lot easier to fix - especially my tendency to ride with the left hip angle wide open and the right hip angle more closed regardless of direction. That's not really a comment on this saddle, it's just that doing Dressage in a Dressage saddle is easier than doing Dressage in a jump saddle. Even a glorious, well-balanced, well-fitted unicorn of a jump saddle.
My one complaint is that the twist seems a little wider than I like, but I didn't get off waddling in pain like I used to with Louie's old saddle (EquiNovice knows what I'm talking about!) And even with the gullet situation being what it is, Connor went really well in it, especially at the canter. He's always moved a lot better at the canter in a Dressage saddle.
|I told my trainer the cover struck me as odd. It says, "Real saddles made in England." As opposed to fake saddles made in England? That made her laugh, because she's from England, and apparently 'real' in this phrase means something like "proper".|
My one issue is this: