Manufacturer: Lovatt & Ricketts
Model: Ellipse Dressage
Category: Dressage Saddles
Purchase: I bought this saddle new from a US dealer (The Saddlefitter). The fitting kit is very thorough and the saddle offers many custom features without the custom cost.
Likes: The saddle is very comfortable and breaks in easily. It is well flocked and I like the fact that there is some customizing available; for example, I chose to have the saddle made in buffalo leather with dark brown knee pad and jockey skirt. Also available is an adjustable stirrup bar and two sizes of detachable knee roll. Finally, the tree can be adjusted by a qualified saddler. The dealer (who is also a master saddler) provides a very comprehensive fitting kit and discusses your needs with you before buying and got a fairly quick delivery after ordering (about 8 weeks).
Dislikes: The saddle is more of a medium twist but has a narrow waist. I ride an 18" but for this saddle to fit me better I would need a 19". The saddle balance is backward - in other words I need a correction half-pad that brings the back of the saddle up to be seated correctly. I do not know if this is fault with this particular saddle. I had a master saddler (not the one I bought it from) come and fit the saddle to my horse but we couldn't get the saddle adjusted without the correction pad. I do not like the placement of the billets. The front billet should be placed under the front knee roll rather than loose; this may be contributing the balance issue. Lastly, like many I bought this saddle via internet, email and phone. Although very helpful during the buying process the customer service fell off after I received the saddle and rode in it; I called to discuss the aforementioned balance issue but was simply told to put the saddle further back on the horse. I am fortunate that my barn has a master saddler visit once a year so I was able to make adjustments.
Quality: The saddle is very well made with quality materials. I have tried many saddles in the last couple of years and I always come back to English made saddles for comfort and quality - this brand is no exception. However, like many things buying via internet/email has its issues and disadvantages - be prepared to have some disappointment.
Summary: With a couple of design changes I would buy this saddle again but not from this particular dealer.
Usefulness Rating: 2.25 out of 5.
4 reader(s) voted.
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