Model: Isabell (with CAIR)
Category: Dressage Saddles
Purchase: I got this saddle at a local tack shop and paid $1,000 for it new. It came with a cover and the gullet system. I had tried on many, many, many other saddles to fit my horse, and had all been rejected by the saddle fitter (or my budget). I was really hesitant about getting a synthetic saddle, but it was one of my last resorts.
Likes: Just about everything! I ride 5 to 7 times a week in this saddle, in the rain, snow, sun, and hail... and it is great. I loved that It fit my horse, and he started moving better than he ever had (even in my old saddle that fit him also). I like the position it puts me in (but doesn't force me), the comfort of the Equisuede, and I can't forget the fact that to clean it I just run a wet sponge over it!! I also go on trails a lot, and have done up to 20 miles in this saddle (at one time) without a complaint from my horse...or my butt! I have not had to adjust the gullet system yet, but the tack shop I got it from showed me how to do it properly before I bought it, so I feel it should be easy.
Dislikes: It is rather heavy for being synthetic, but my horse loves the saddle, so I can't complain much. The only synthetic complaint I have is that (and it doesn't do this when I wear chaps)is that when I wear my tall boots to show/take lessons they squeak against the synthetic material on the bottom part of the saddle flap. It is not bad enough that I find distracting in a test, but some less patient people may not like it...so try this saddle with your boots. Also, I found the knee blocks to be a little too constricting (I like to be able to move a little bit more), so I removed the knee blocks. This again could also be considered a good thing about this saddle, because you CAN remove/reposition them! Just picky things, nothing big.
Quality: Excellent quality, excellent construction. It has fit every horse that I have plopped it on, and I will never have to re flock it or get foam replaced...so nice! Less wear than expected, and it hasn't faded at all in the 9 months I've had it. I tend to be a little hard on saddles, but this saddle takes it so well. Great saddle, and a very affordable price!
Summary: Great saddle. I love it. I never regret my decision to buy it...it has been great!
Usefulness Rating: 2.875 out of 5.
8 reader(s) voted.
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