Wave the White Flag
Tucker has won round one!
Gabriel decided today after a less than stellar lesson, that Tucker needs a rider who will battle it out with him over the "leg means forward no matter what" concept.
I am not the rider to do it, and Gabriel freely admits he no longer wants to ride out such horses.
Tucker went from brilliant to dead stop stuck his feet in concrete today during the lesson. Some of his work was positively wonderful and then, he'd either get tired or just fed up with having to work and start getting nasty about my leg.
Sometimes he'd go forward off the leg aid. Sometimes he'd kick out. Sometimes he'd threaten. And at least twice he just quit altogether. The last quit, near the end of the lesson was a total shutdown. I could not turn him or get a foot to move at all. He would not even lead forward when Gabriel took hold of the reins.
We waited. We cajoled. We asked nicely. We asked not so nicely. But I didn't dare use either whip or spur with any conviction as that is what sets him up into a rear or off into a rocket launch buck.
Finally, I managed to turn him. Gabriel led him a few strides, then I got him walking and finally into a stretchy trot.
While fatigue may have played a role, the fact was that earlier on, he was also disputing my leg and would not always go.
So, between now and Wednesday, Gabriel will try to find someone who can ride through the nonsense and convince Tucker to go when told. We've pretty much convinced ourselves there is nothing physically wrong with him, to make him behave this way. He is sound and doesn't seem to have any soreness issues anywhere. My only question is that I am using the new Ansur on him and it is contructed a little differently from the older model. But I haven't had the chance to ride and switch saddles to see if that makes any difference.
Besides, the fact is that no matter what saddle he's in, he still does not respect the leg.
It is frustrating, because he really does have a lot of talent. I certainly hope we can sort this out sooner than later.
So, stay tuned for Wednesday. If we can't find a rider by then, I will take either Toby or Chance for my lesson. Big decision.
At least I have a choice.