Manufacturer: Bates (View all products by Bates)
Model: Innova (View all Innova reviews)
Category: Dressage Saddles
Purchase: I acquired this saddle at Amazon.com who posted the saddle for Adams Horse supply. I had been looking for a saddle that would fit two horses - an average thoroughbred, and a wide-shouldered warmblood. I paid approximately $2700. I spent several weeks going to tack stores that carried different lines and sitting in saddles, then tried several on the two horses prior to ordering a saddle for trial.
Likes: This saddle places my leg correctly on both horses. I have also found that the saddle allows the rider to sit deeper than most other saddles. Both horses are very comfortable and I adjust the fit with a wither pad. I have also had the saddle on a third, difficult to fit warmblood, and it fits her as well. I have been very pleased with how well the saddle fits different horses and how well it fits the rider.
Dislikes: I was disappointed initially by the leather texture compared to other saddle in this price range. However, the saddle has had approximately 40 rides without any sign of rubbing or wear, and my hesitation over the leather is beginning to dissipate.
Quality: The saddle did not require any 'breaking in' and was comfortable and non-slick from the first ride. After 1 month of use, there is no visual wear or tear.
Summary: I am thrilled with the purchase of the Bates Innova at this time. I have never purchased a saddle in this price range, and I was worried I would regret my purchase. I have been amazed at how much improvement I have seen in both my horses' performance and my position in a very short time. Although this saddle may not fit every horse, I think it would certainly be worth a try when looking for a new dressage saddle.
Author: Horse Vet
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
10 reader(s) voted.
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