The Berney Grand Prix Dressage saddle has been designed, tried and tested by some of Irelands most successful riders. It was created by integrating the newest technology and innovations to provide the ultimate saddle for comfort, balance and performance for the horse and rider. Designed with our most premium French calf skin leather seat, flaps and skirts gives the rider more grip that intensifies with use and more security in the saddle. The French calf skin leather is soft and supple giving you that ridden in feeling from day one. Berney Bros. were able to provide the most comfort to the horse and rider by using a combination of orthopaedic memory foam, a spring tree, and wool flocked panels. The orthopaedic memory foam is embedded into the seat of the saddle and retains its spring and shock absorbency over time providing a really comfortable seat for the rider and aiding the horse by absorbing the impact of the rider’s movement. As with all of Berney’s saddles, this saddle is made with a laminated beech wood spring tree that is strength tested to the British Safety Standard. By using a spring tree we were able to achieve added shock absorbency while keeping the saddle lightweight. We designed the tree with a higher gullet plate and cut back head to accommodate the more blood horses with more prominent withers. The third component we use to achieve the ultimate comfort and welfare for the horse is our fully leather lined panels flocked with pure new wool. The biggest advantage that this material provides against others is that it spreads the weight of impact over a bigger surface area allowing the horse full use of themselves. Pure new wool also retains its spring and shock absorbency over time and moulds to the shape of the horses back compensating for horses changing shape throughout the season. The Grand Prix Saddle range has been praised for its ‘balance’, the reason for this is that riders are able to get into a really good position in the saddle mainly because of the dished round cantle and sloped knee blocks. The dished round cantle gives the rider a ‘locked-in’ position meaning they get a really secure and comfortable seat and leg position. The sloped knee blocks aid and support the rider by reinforcing their seat and leg position but allowing full use of their lower leg. The close contact design of this saddle, along with the aforementioned design features, provides the ultimate performance saddle. This gives a better two-way communication between the horse and rider and makes the saddle lighter. The straight cut of the flaps gives an elegant line that allows the horse full use of their shoulders and does not distort the judge’s view. The close contact design is achieved by having extended buffalo hide girth straps which means less bulk between the riders leg and the horse, without compromising the riders safety or the horses comfort and welfare. This saddle is available in sizes 17”, 17.5” and 18” for the rider. We recommend riders under 6ft. and 12.5 stone to go with a 17” and riders above that to go for an 18”. The fit refers to the shape and prominence of the horses withers. We find that a medium fit is perfect for 95% of horses. However if your horses has a very high wither, most commonly found with more blood horses then a narrow fit may be better and if your horse has a ‘mutton shoulder’ or relatively low withers then a wide fit would be better.