Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Sandro Hit: When you finally tire of Totilas....

Sandro Hit is perhaps one of the four most influential sires of the 20th century.  My sense is that he, and his get, define the ideal for the "modern warmblood." He reliably produces leggy, chisel-headed, lean-looking offspring with lots of activity behind. A very classy horse.

Here's the funny thing. I love his offspring, but I'm not that crazy about him. Is it just me?

Taste in horses is a personal thing, and I'm no expert. To me he is a beautifully put together horse, with  lots of activity, but not the suspension or elasticity you see in Rubenstein.  Weltmeyer. Donnerhall. Quaterback. What do you think?

Sandro Hit

 What I do love about SH is his babies.  His offspring often have all the wonderful qualities of SH plus something from the mom. Of the Sandro Hit sons,  Sunny Boy is my favorite. I just love him...

Sunny Boy


  1. Im no dressage expert, but I did enjoy Sunny Boy over his father. I thought that Sunny Boy's trot was just lovely.

  2. I actually prefer Sandro to the likes of Toto... I am not a fan of the flailing front leg movement and still don't understand why he scores so high.

    Of the father and son, I think I prefer Sandro just a bit, but it might just be how they are presented -- Sandro is just a bit steadier and straighter. It's minor but still comes into play in my mind!

  3. I'm no expert either, but... I haven't seen all the big name stallions (that would be a neat post to see, if you ever care to do the research on them... I'm currently trying to familiarize myself with stallions w/in the US for the most part, but will get to the others eventually), but if I were to compare SH to Quaterback, I'd say he has infinitely more balance and training. I don't think they seem to have TRIED to get that huge trot out of him, at least not in a timeframe close to the time the video was taken. Even my TB, whose natural ability is much more in collection than extension, can have a pretty huge and pretty full of suspension (suspenseful?) trot, which I'm starting to see as we work and condition and I learn to ask for more all the time. I'm not referring to the rodeo he put on with me at the end of my lesson yesterday, either.
    Anyway, Quaterback's HUGE trot seems an uneducated one lacking in a lot of the balance of a more mature, more trained horse. It's beautiful, but not ultimately one with the kind of adjustment and control you want. As the videos I've seen of him were all very young and awfully green-seeming, that's what I would expect. Still much larger than SH naturally anyway, though. I think SH could have at least as large a trot as Sunny Boy (again, I think - and I am NOT an expert) if trained/asked for it. I tend to love his babies/grandbabies for their athleticism, natural balance and adjustability - and I think he shows that. He's VERY much my type of horse - I love seeing a horse in control of his legs and body, adore the massive jump in his canter (which I think is MUCH nicer than his son's, though Sunny Boy does have a nice canter as well), and I think the SH horses I've known have had a tendency to do well in collection and upper level work for both their natural balance and their minds. My sample size is VERY small and may not be representative at all, but that's a limited opinion just based on what I know.

  4. Love Sandro Hit...I think the fact that he is such a compact horse makes his gait deceptive. It really is full of suspension. His son looks to have a bit longer back which gives an appearance of more extravagance.

    I also liked the close up shot of SH's head because it is very clear he is a bit ahead of the vertical at that moment and not at all overbending to the bit.

  5. Jean, you're right. It's funny to make "critiques" of horses at this level, they truly are amazing and Sandro Hit is probably the most uphill stallion out there.

    I guess he appeals to me more as a sire than as a riding horse. I've seen a few Sunny Boy offspring, but both were by Jazz, and that does appear to be a successful combination in breeding. Sandro Hit seems to pair well with a wide range of mares, and he "stamps" them.

  6. You see, I like Sunny Boy's trot, and his sire's canter. Sunny Boy's looks a little too forced... SH has a gorgeous canter that I really admire. I don't think anybody could beat his canter... but its purely a personal thing and not at all a quality of the canter thing ;P

  7. I like Sandro. There is not a hint of artificial leg action in his gaits and his canter is gorgeous. He looks dead straight and I think his passage has lots of suspension. I really like the compact look of him.

  8. I am way way not an expert but I did think that the back legs are supposed to be parallel to the front in the trot. In Tortilas the back end has no hope but in Sandro he does it quite nicely. Anyway they are both amazing horses, I'd love to see them in person!

  9. the for leg action of SB makes me wonder how much cranking he has had to get his legs to move like that. SH however moves like a real horse and isn't behind the vertical at all times.

  10. Wow, Sunny Boy does not look cranked to me -- even with that huge stallion neck his poll is the highest point and his neck is not tight.


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