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Leading Event Rider Helps To Develop New Concept Saddle.

Leading event rider Gary Parsonage has been instrumental in testing and helping to develop a revolutionary new saddle in conjunction with Walsall master craftsman, Frank Baines.

"The Reflex close contact saddle combines two key features essential for today's rider; an extremely soft and comfortable seat allowing excellent balance for the rider and our new extended point system (EXP) that benefits the horse," explains Frank.

"The EXP system creates a larger bearing surface to more evenly distribute the weight and pressure of the rider across the horses' back, giving more comfort and freedom for the horse, especially when landing after a jump."

On landing, the combined weight of the rider and horse is taken on the front legs which then transfers across the body as the hind legs touch down. By using the EXP system, the weight of the rider is spread, thus reducing the pressure on the horses back from the point of the tree by up to four times.

Based on the extremely popular Elan close contact, the Reflex has been extensively developed in the USA for the last three years and thoroughly tested by several leading competitive riders both at home and abroad.

Over the past 12 months, Reflex prototypes have become part of the tack room furniture at Gary Parsonage's Leicestershire event yard, who has test ridden all his horses from novice to advanced in the new saddle.

With his eye on Badminton and the World Championships in Spain, Gary has already campaigned his horses on the indoor show jumping circuit, including international event horse, Just So to sharpen them up for the coming season, where he has found the balance and comfort of the Reflex an advantage; "The nature of event riding means I need a saddle that is secure and adaptable for both riding cross country and show jumping," says Gary.

"The Reflex offers freedom for the rider to move, which is particularly essential when jumping a variety of cross country fences, including drops and banks. It is also flexible enough to cope when faced with a triple of show jumping uprights."

"To train and compete horses all day long I need a saddle that is comfortable, does the job well and is fairly universal. The Reflex does that. It also helps sit the rider in the right position, making it an ideal saddle for riders competing at any level."

Using only the finest French calf leather for extra grip and stability in the seat and incorporating a wider-waisted, open headed tree for added rider comfort, the Reflex close contact saddle is the ultimate jumping saddle.

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