Here he is as a yearling. He's so awkward its cute!
I bough Buddy in August 2010, after riding him for a few months. My TB Phoenix had developed ringbone in his right front, and after taking him to a lameness expert, I decided to semi-retire him. He was sound for walk/trot work, but I still wanted to jump and show, so I began the search for a new project.
During the months when we tried to rehab Phoenix I had been riding Buddy. He was owned by my barn owner, Connie, who had bought him as a head horse for team roping a few years earlier. She has a strong dressage background, and had ridden Buddy both western and english with dressage basics. Another boarder at the barn had also been ridding Buddy, and had started him over fences just for fun. He loved it! When I started with Buddy, he hadn't jumped in a year, and I hadn't for about 4 months. We were both rusty, but he was a great confidence boost for me.
August 2010 schooling show
I had asked Connie if I could take Buddy to a little hunter schooling show right before I started my horse search. We did the 2' long stirrup division, and came home with three blues and a second! It was a very small show, but I couldn't have been happier of Buddy! Due to finances, my budget for a new horse was quite low, and I was looking at a lot of young, green horses. None of the really stood out.
Connie texted me one day, asking if she made me a deal, if I would want Buddy. I immediately answered "YES!!" I know she could have gotten three times what I paid for him, if she has listed him. She had always said that he was the one horse she would never sell; she has quite a few. He's as bombproof as a horse can be, quiet on the ground and undersaddle, no vices, and can jump a course one day then go move cows the next. I must have asked her a thousand times if she was sure she wanted to sell him to me. She kept saying yes, and that if I ever had to sell him, she will take him back.
Since then, Buddy and I have been figuring each other out. I'm having to adapt to a horse who has mostly western training, and he's having to get used to my hunter-jumper ways. We've done a couple little jumper shows, coming home with blues at each, as well as taking a few western lessons including one on cows. This year, I really want to buckle down and focus on our work over fences and be more comfortable doing bigger fences. Hopefully, depending on money, I want to be able to do 2'6" at an A rated show this summer.
I know, I know....Helmet!