Manufacturer: Wintec / Bates (View all products by Wintec)
Model: 2000 All Purpose (Original Monoflap) (View all All Purpose 2000 (Original Monoflap) reviews)
Category: All Purpose Saddles
Purchase: I bought this saddle from another riding student for $150. This model was introduced in 1996, I believe, and I purchased it in 2012, so it was around 16 years old when I got it.
Likes: The balance on this saddle is excellent. The newer 2000 AP's have a more forward leaning seat, but this older model gives you what Pony Club calls a "balance seat." It's ideal for flatwork and is a great substitute for dressage riders whose hips will not allow them to use modern dressage saddles (with their ultra deep seats and large blocks). The knee block is built into the outer flap and gives me a nice secure feeling over jumps. Of all of the Wintecs I've ridden in (500 AP and Close Contact, newer model Pro Dressage, newer 2000 AP), this is by far the comfiest.
Dislikes: This model does not have a changeable gullet, but it doesn't bother me because the medium width seems to mold easily to lots of different horses. It easily accomodates horses that would take a medium-wide or wide gullet on the gullet exchange system. It has a "closed flap," meaning that the two flaps are sewn together. Because of this, it has long billet straps and requires a dressage girth. I'm not fond of the material the straps are made of, but they are certainly pliable and durable. (They could also be replaced for leather if I chose.)
Quality: This saddle is 16 years old and still going strong, so I'd say the quality is good. Like all Wintecs, it cleans up to look like new. The equisuede on the seat is an earlier type than what's used today, and it pills some, but since I'm sitting on it, no one notices.
Summary: This is the only saddle that I've ever ridden in that I feel less sore after I've ridden than before. It does not give me a chair seat (I have rather short legs and struggle with this), and I don't have to fight to find the correct position. These saddles come up on ebay and saddle consignment shops like Galloping Grape every so often, and the price is usually very reasonable. If you're hunting for one of these models, they have the same equisuede area that the newer models have, but the equileather section of the flap is a different material - it's smoother- and there is an edging along the bottom edge of the flap (like on the Pro models). They also have "Bates" on the maker plate instead of "Wintec."
Author: Denim Dressage
Usefulness Rating: 2.94118 out of 5.
17 reader(s) voted.
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