Manufacturer: Antares Medium-Deep Seat Jumping Saddle
Category: Jumping Saddles
Purchase: I outgrew my old saddle, so I needed to find a saddle that a) would last a long time and b) would fit my long legs. I started looking all over local tack stores for decent saddles, but most didn't carry saddles with forward flaps (or extra forward), which I need. I looked at a bunch of suppliers online, for something under the $4000 mark, which seems to be where the prices start for new, premium saddles. Finally, I found a year-old, mint condition Antares selling for $3169.00 at the Fine Used Saddles website. The website offers a great description of their saddles and loads of photos at every imaginable angle.
Likes: When I first took the saddle out of the box, I was praying it would fit, because it's absolutely beautiful and the leather is a dream! The underside of the saddle proved it would be very comfortable for the horse and even out my weight on his back. The saddle is practically new and has hardly any visible wear, so I was surprised that the leather was already so soft, but I've been told even brand new Antares are this way. When I put the saddle on my horse, the billets were nice and supple and a nice length, so I was happy I wouldn't have to buy a new girth. Sitting in the new saddle for the first time, I was thrilled. The extra-forward flaps actually fit my long thigh, and my knee didn't just go over the edge! The seat couldn't be more comfortable, and the front and rear blocks helped me keep a correct position. The saddle came with a beautiful blue, water-proof cover, too.
Dislikes: Because the leather is so soft and supple, it can get scratched just from dismounting or putting the stirrups up or pulling them down, so be very careful! Also, when it arrived, the leather was a bit on the stickier side, because it attracts horse hair very easily.
Quality: Top notch, it is one of the premier saddles you can find. The flaps and billets are soft and supple, which isn't too common in newer saddles. The two-toned dark, even color looks beautiful on almost any colored horse, too. You definitely get what you pay for!
Summary: Given the price for this almost new unit, and the fact that I'm such a hard fit with my long legs, I would buy this saddle again in a heartbeat (that is, after slapping down the plastic, eek!). The fit and comfort for both horse and rider couldn't be better, the leather is incredible, and the saddle promises to be with me for years to come. You can't do better than that!
Usefulness Rating: 2 out of 5.
4 reader(s) voted.
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