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Re: [RC] Lead Changes - Truman Prevatt

k s swigart wrote:
Truman said:

Think it isn't important, I saw a TB race one time where the only
reason the horse that won won was because it was being ridden
by HOF jockey Jerry Baily and during the stretch run he did a
flying lead change of the horse to put him on fresher legs and
pulled ahead by a nose.

While lead changes in TB racing are important, this probably isn't the
reason that this particular horse won this particular race.  Pretty much
ALL TB race horses make a change from the left lead to the right lead as
they come out of the turn into the home stretch and pretty much all
jockeys know how to ask for it.  They also make a change ONTO the left
lead from going down the back stretch on the right lead (all this, BTW
applies only to tracks where the horses are running to the left....in
other countries, sometimes races are run in the opposite direction or
have turns in both directions.
Actually Bailey queued him for a lead change in the stretch run, and got a burst of acceleration he needed to get his nose in front. The commentator asked him about this and Bailey said the horse is very quick and agile and does lead changes almost effortlessly so he tired it to get a little acceleration at the wire - it worked.
However, flying changes not being effortless, it can also be valuable to
teach a horse to be able to balance itself in a counter-canter
(cantering on the wrong lead) if the trail zig-zags and you don't want
to turn the effort into a series of tempe changes :) since tempe changes
require a great deal more effort than a counter-canter (although a
counter canter puts more stress on joints which is just made worse if
not done with good balance).
Some horses do flying lead changes better than others. My mare seemed to do them without effort once she figured out how. At first we had trouble but after some dressage work, some jumping and a lot of galloping on tight treelined winding trails - that gave her the incentive to inititate the change on her own, she figured it out and became very good. All I had to do with her was drop my seatbone to the other side and she would change leads. She would also change on her own when we came to a turn or she got tired on one lead. But she was also a cantering machine - her canter was a very natural gait for her once we got it figured out. She was much better then the Jbird, but I must say after I took the steel shoes for his front feet and put on the equiflex (much lighter) his canter and gallop in general and lead changes in specific have vastly improved.


We imitate our masters only because we are not yet masters ourselves, and only

We imitate our masters only because we are not yet masters ourselves, and only

because in doing so we learn the truth about what cannot be imitated.


[RC] Lead Changes, k s swigart