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Riding Ex Racehorse Tackless On Beach VIDEO
 By Polo the Weirdo   •   9th Apr 2017   •   965 views   •   0 comments
Riding Ex Racehorse Tackless On Beach

Have you ever wondered what would happen if you took an ex-racehorse out into a wide-open space, like a beach? Have you ever wondered what would happen, if you were to strip off all tack, and take that ex-racehorse out in a neck strap? Have you ever wondered, maybe, what would happen if you put the two situations together? If you have, then you may just have a death wish... but hey, what good rider doesn’t have a few of those?

When it comes to that funny little line between bravery and stupidity (you know, the one that’s supposed to protect you from those death wishes?), I think many of us riders can say that we pretty much use it as a jump-rope. We risk our lives every time we hop onto a fresh youngster on a windy day, ride a horse around a big course of jumps, or try to sit through the ‘expressiveness’ of a slightly-too-powerful 17hh steed. Nevertheless, for all the risks we take, most of us do so sensibly. We know how to pick our battles – which risks to take, and which we should rather avoid. Most of us know this. I, however, have always had a little trouble differentiating bravery from stupidity. As some of you may recall, I have previously attempted to take on a new perspective regarding the issue, but it turns out that riding backwards doesn’t reverse the line to put you back on the side of bravery as I had hoped. It just makes you look more stupid. In a backwards direction.



Now, taking your horse to the beach certainly isn’t stupid. And riding your horse tackles isn’t stupid, as long as you’ve had the training and gained the control to do it. Hopping onto a fresh ex-racehorse (with a reputation for being a complete and utter git) with only ‘self-trained-for-fun’ neck reining skills, and turning the animal loose on the beach, may however be considered slightly stupid. So, for your enjoyment, I give you the latest in my series of stupid (but nevertheless eventually safe) equestrian ‘stunts’. Yes. A certain Mr. Moo horse recently took his first tackles trip off the yard, onto a wide open beach.

The ride began well, with a gentle stroll along a sand track toward the beach. Moo did some looking around, occasionally ignored me to pick at some grass or chase a bird, but was overall a polite and attentive young gentleman. This behaviour continued once we got onto the wide-open beach, however he did feel rather as though he expanded by at least a hand in every direction. Exposure to wide-open spaces tends to inflate ex-racehorses. It’s science.

We started out with little turns on the haunches, transitions, serpentines in walk to test control, then took it to trot. Moo listened perfectly to the neck strap and seat aids, and was easy to steer and control – until a group of riders appeared on the horizon and started walking towards us. Lone horse in wide-open space sees group of other horses, looking all happy and sociable and plodding along instead of having to work. Cue inflation number two. Luckily both Moo’s manners and work-ethic have improved over the years, and as the horses left, his attention remained on me. Feeling confident and in control, I decided to try a canter. Though a little bouncy, Moo remained controllable, and kindly refrained himself from attacking his dog friends. I finished that canter as a very proud and happy rider, ready for a relaxed stroll back to the yard.



Of course, I never did get that stroll. No stupid plan can ever go completely right, after all. When the dog ran past Moo’s legs on the way home, he proceeded to spook and bolt after his little buddy all the way down the sand track, ignoring the (now rather useless) neck rein, and his rider’s fruitless shouts of “Whoa”. Thankfully his sensibility returned at the end of the track, and the remaining distance to the yard was covered at a calm and collected walk. In the end, this particular bout of stupidity had a happy ending. My bond with my horse has never felt stronger, and to say that I felt perfectly in tune with him (except during a certain mad gallop after a dog) would be an understatement.

Taking your average ex-racehorse out for a tackles stroll on the beach may seem like a terrible idea, but for myself and Moo, it was a beautiful and exhilarating experience. I certainly hope I’ll get to try more things like it sometime soon.

What is your favourite experience that you’ve shared with your horse? Tell your story in the comments below.
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