SKL, Hi again. Horses are so called "Flight Animals", that is, they take to their heels when faced by danger like deer or rabbits etc. They do not run into the attack like cats; big or small, bears, wolves etc.
My experience with horses is that they do enjoy a good race where they can show what they're made of; I've ridden enough horses to know this. What they don't particularly enjoy is jumping blind and as we often see they will refuse at the last second unseating the rider in a most ungainly fashion if
- and this is important - they have no confidence in the rider.
That may sound strange but it's true that a rider can build a trust and confidence into a horse where sometimes it almost seems like the horse is thinking OK, but I hope (he) she knows what she's doing
My oldest daughter had this with horses and her daughter Fern has it too.
The horse and rider have so much trust and confidence in each other that they become a single unit because they spend lots of time together training and just riding out. (in Fern and Kelly's case they share the same accommodation as the horse when they're on tour
With these national jockeys it's all about speed. The jumps are generally blind; definitely dangerous and the jockeys are so seated that they have no control over the horse. The control over a horse is exerted by the lower thigh just above the knee. A racing jockey is perched like a monkey over the horse's shoulders on short stirrups so all he's good for is pushing the horse on; with the whip if necessary.
Last year at the Horse of the Year Show, Fern had a win and a good few qualifications but decided by the Wednesday to call it a day because the going was getting heavy and she saw no need to spoil the rest of the week for Romany Jane. She could have competed on the Saturday among the best placed and among the best of the best; getting herself more rosettes etc. but she knew with heavy going it would be hard work and no enjoyment for Jane so she quit.That
told me the measure of the lass.
And that's what competing is about - horse and rider enjoying competition, not a horse being forced and terrified into running or jumping. Racing jockeys can never have the same relationship as show jumpers with their mounts. They can never build that trust which is needed between horse and rider.
But money is the deciding factor here; big win = big stud fees; the purse is generally secondary.
The Grand National cost on average three horses lives each time it's run.
As for bullfighting ... don't get me started
Wait a minute ... I've got my eye on a burd.
... Some try to tell me thoughts they cannot defend ...