I walked Amber for 10 minutes as directed by the vet. It was depressing and somewhat a reality check.
Then I did a walk/trot session with a cute OTTB named Mickey. He needs a job and I apparently need a ride, so I get to poke around on him for a while.
He's not badly put together, actually. Good bone, uphill, powerful hindquarters. He has a little more knee action going on than is probably ideal for hunters, but still not a horrid mover. I can feel every little thing in his walk and trot though. Took some getting used to. I had no idea riding Amber was like riding a couch until I rode this guy.
I didn't canter, because Casey left early and Victoria wasn't sure if the owner/Casey wanted me to do more than walk/trot. For a while I was getting the feeling I was getting on a crotch rocket, which he apparently can be. But Amber taught me long ago about crotch rocket horses...it's so sad that there were points in time where she took off with me so much, getting taken off with doesn't even phase me now. I'm sure he would have been fine cantering though. He rides a lot like Amber, despite being very opposite in his gaits. They wear the same girth size too, despite Mick being quite a bit larger. Even on the SAME holes.
I actually found him to be quieter than Amber, though. His bigger stride caused me to have him crawling along, and I realized I felt like my speed was more than it was because of the bigger stride, but I decided to let it be a little too slow since they said he likes to get fast, because I felt if that's the case, it would benefit him to let him poke around if he wanted to. Loose rein. He seems to alternate between actually getting on the bit and hanging on me. It was pretty easy to remind him not to hang, all I had to do was tickle him with the inside rein and he went "Oh yeah..."
He was quiet to lunge, quiet to ride...Victoria said she thought he liked me. Which is good, I liked him too, surprisingly. I was kind of expecting myself to be a little resentful like I usually am when I'm catch riding 'against my will'.
He got a hosing and some cookies for packing me around a while.
So it looks like this is my catch ride for a little while. I'm sure Monica at Chasing The Dream gives it a thumbs up for an OTTB. He's an ex-eventer too, so possibly even 2 thumbs up.