Let’s Discuss: Would You Purchase a Horse Via Horse Show Sale?

Photo by M & R Photo.

Horse show sales are commonplace in Europe. Last weekend’s Baborówko Horse Sale Show, for instance, featured a sport horse auction of mostly Polish stock in addition to being an international event. It looked like fun Saturday evening entertainment, and if you were on the hunt for a horse it was premium pickings: Even CIC3* winner Andreas Dibowski went home to Germany with a new horse in his lorry.

“I saw video of the horse a couple days ago, and I liked the type — it’s a very long-legged mare — we saw her in the presentation and fell in love,” Andreas said. “The price was OK so I bought her!”

Stateside, horse show sales are fewer and further between, but they certainly exist. One upcoming example is the RPP Thoroughbred Makeover (Oct. 4-7 at the Kentucky Horse Park), which estimates that approximately half of the horses who complete the event will also be offered for sale or adoption. You can check out the Makeover Marketplace listings here, which will soon be updated with competition numbers, stall assignments, and ride times, and sale horses are easily identifiable in the flesh with green competition numbers. Prospects can be tried on-site in a dedicated trial area, and Hagyard Equine Medical Institute will have vets on call for pre-purchase exams. Finding “the one” doesn’t get much more convenient than that!

Horse shopping can be time-consuming, expensive, emotionally exhausting and financially risky. Could horse show sales help streamline and safeguard the process? Would the European model work, or would it need to be altered for the States? Would YOU consider buying a horse from a sale or auction, or have you had any experience doing so?

Discuss in the comments below!