Manufacturer: Bates (View all products by Bates)
Model: Caprilli AP with Cair panels (View all Caprilli All Purpose with CAIR Panel System reviews)
Category: All Purpose Saddles
Purchase: I do not own my own horse but I ride in weekly lessons and I wanted to purchase my own saddle to customize it the way I want and to be sure that I was learning all I could in my lessons. Although my barn has many nice school saddles there is one that fit me well and the others were too small. If the one saddle I liked was being used by someone else I was in for an unhappy ride. I bought the Bates at Dover Saddlery used for $800. It had been lightly used in their test ride program but was practically brand new!
Likes: I love this saddle! As soon as I rode in it I could feel the difference in my seat and the security I felt in the saddle. I love the removable knee blocks and my knees now feel like they are glued to the saddle. I have only been riding regularly for about a year so I'm not as aware of the little nuances in saddle fitting and feel but for a beginner this saddle has been a great improvement over the HDR AP saddle I was using before. The seat is deep and secure and the flaps fit my long legs well. The recessed stirrup bars are great too, very little bulk under your thigh. So far I have enjoyed jumping small cross rails in it as well.
Dislikes: I have very long legs so I think that the flaps could be a little more forward for me but I wouldn't really expect that in an AP saddle anyway. I can't say that I have noticed a big difference in the TB I ride in terms of the Cair panels. He doesn't seem anymore or less happy in this saddle but who knows??
Quality: I knew I had struck gold when I saw this saddle for $800 since it normally retails for about $1600! It is a very well made saddle!! The leather is like butter and is gorgeous. I have heard great things about the quality of Bates saddles and I expect that this saddle will be no different!
Summary: A wonderful, high quality, reasonably priced saddle for beginners or anyone who likes an AP saddle. Every rider and horse is different so I think it's important to try many different saddles but for me, this one has been perfect!
Usefulness Rating: 2.9 out of 5.
10 reader(s) voted.
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