Are judges putting up lame Icelandic Horses?
The recent video (the first below) of Hvinur frá Holtsmúla is creating quite a stir. (The second video is about six months earlier. The third video shows a tolt clinic by Joi and Hvinur in 2005.)
Are Icelandic Horse judges rewarding bad conformation, bad gaits, lameness, and poor riding? Is this what makes a "world champion"?
Some people say this horse is obviously lame. (See the section of the first video, around 1:30 where he starts walking and then goes to turn to reverse direction.)
The horse is fighting the bit the whole time, which should be addressed. Is the bit wrong for the horse's mouth? Is the contact too much? Is the horse being held in a frame that doesn't agree with him? Are the glands in the throat latch area being compressed to a painful problem for him?
The horse's tail, obviously for years, has been wringing. Has anyone asked him "why"?
Additionally, the horse's legs show marked winging. This much winging can be caused by incorrect conformation. It can be exacerbated by weights on the distal limb, or other means that create extreme animation.