|Kind eye, honest face, good heart|
What makes an all-rounder?
So take a look at Simon's conformation shot, below. I think he is around four years old here. On the positive side, I think he is pretty harmonious and proportional for a big young horse. Each part individually is average or better -- nothing is awful. He's not terribly muscled over the croup, but you'll see no sign of this in a mature horse photo of him (to be shown in another post). At this stage he is a little short through the hindquarter here, and his gaskins appear a little thin. His shoulder is straight-ish, and a little muttony. That shoulder does not usually produce an expressive front leg, and he had fairly straight hunter action. He was very correct in his movement. His head is a little large but a lovely honest eye makes you forget about it :-). His neck is set reasonably well and he's level, but not particularly uphill. Conformationally, I don't think dressage would be precluded. But in the end, I think his temperament and his huge, ground-eating canter made him an ideal hunter type, or maybe a foxhunter. He didn't have the fire in the belly to event. I dunno, what do y'all think? Am I right?