The Extra Contact tailormade show jumping saddle: Designed in close collaboration with equestrian sector professionals.

selle obstacle sur mesure Extra Contact

Antarès works with renowned and highly skilled equestrian sector professionals !

Our top new product launched in late 2023, the Extra Contact tailormade show jumping saddle was designed to offer a highly technical show jumping saddle for competition.
For riders the priority was to promote close contact, balance and a seating position at the centre point of gravity. As for the horse, comfort, ergonomic design and unhindered forequarters were the focus on attention.

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To ensure the result lived up to our expectations, we worked with two French riding luminaries, Dr Bruno Baup and rider/coach, Bertrand Poisson.

  • Dr Bruno Baup is a veterinary surgeon and founder of the Clinique du Cheval in Grenade-sur-Garonne. Bruno Baup is a seasoned equine orthopaedic specialist for competition horses. Pioneering the link between medicine and farriery, he is die-hard for equine comfort and runs the Clinique du Cheval with his business partner, Louis-Marie Desmaizières, which one of France’s leading clinics. Bruno Baup has been working with Antarès for 20 years. The Precision headpiece and DTA50 panels are just some of the products resulting from this meeting of minds.
  • Bertrand Poisson is a national instructor for young riders and ponies as well as an international-level eventing rider. He has competed for the French eventing team and won a gold medal at Boekelo in 2002. He also set up the Écuries de la Forêt stables in Bray en Val. As a partner rider for Antarès, with a keen eye on technique, his expertise as an elite rider and coach means he can best advise our R&D team and, of course, test prototypes.

The bond between our two partners and Antarès is subsequently built on the relentless search for excellence. We wanted to ask them some questions and share their impressions and opinions on this new jumping saddle with you.

How did you get involved with Antarès and what role did you have in this venture ?

Bertrand Poisson : “I’ve been involved with Antarès for a long time.
I was talking to Xavier Lenrouilly (Co-founder and CEO of the Antarès Group) about show jumping saddles.
At the time, Xavier asked me what I thought about show jumping saddles in general. So, I told him that hardly any suited my needs.
Instinctively, he said, “You know what? We’re going to make a brand new saddle!” That’s how this adventure began!
To design this saddle, I shared my expertise as an experienced rider but also as a riding instructor”.

Bruno Baup : “I’ve known Antarès since the very beginning. The company founders’ desire to constantly improve horse welfare meant that our paths crossed.
Nowadays, I am veterinary specialist for Antarès to resolve saddle interference issues for horses.
As for the plan to produce the new Extra Contact saddle, I shared my expertise as a vet to ensure the saddle was comfortable for the horse and could be adjusted to fit. I worked mainly on the underside of the saddle, on all the parts that come into contact with the horse”.

What makes this show jumping saddle different from the others ?

Bertrand Poisson : “The chief aim of this saddle is to have closer contact with the horse in general, while providing the rider with good balance. I think it stands out from other saddles due to a range of innovative, new features such as the thickness of the flaps or repositioning the stirrup bars and their mountings.
As for the horse, the saddle is comfortable and adjusts perfectly to its back.
On the rider’s side, they sit further forward and less back in the seat.
This results in greater mobility and a better poise to their riding position“.

Bruno Baup : “What makes this saddle different is its tree and billets which can be swapped and adjusted to fit all horse morphologies.
This saddle has been designed to better distribute weight over the saddle and not hinder the horse.
There are very few saddles that give you the sensation of being at one with the horse
but the Extra Contact saddle does exactly that ! It provides the best possible distribution of weight and pressure, perfectly adapted to the horse’s topline“.

What is the standout innovation on this new saddle ?

Bertrand Poisson : “The best cutting-edge feature on this saddle is undoubtedly its new tree.
It has a more technical look to it, so the Extra Contact saddle tree is more slender, flexible and adjusts to fit all horse morphologies.

Bruno Baup : “The Extra Contact saddle’s top innovation is you can alter it easily. The pommel is now removable which means it is fully adaptable to get the best fit between the saddle and the horse’s back. This feature also mitigates for any discomfort from the metal gullet on the horse’s back, or more specifically, the withers”.

Does this saddle find the right balance between rider position and stability as well as close contact with the horse? If yes, how ?

Bertrand Poisson :
“The Extra Contact saddle does exactly that thanks to all the innovative features it contains. The newly designed saddle tree, repositioned stirrup bars and slender flaps all result in centred poise and stability for freer and immediate movement in the seat while providing closer contact with the horse“.

Bruno Baup :
“Yes, this saddle actively addresses this combination! It gives you the feeling of being at one with your horse, promoting a close contact between horse and rider but that doesn’t necessarily suit everyone.
It provides the rider with a natural seating position in line with their feet !”

What advice would you give to a rider wanting to try out the Extra Contact show jumping saddle ?

Bertrand Poisson :
“It doesn’t matter whether you are an amateur or professional rider, or even if you have specific saddle requirements, try it now with an open mind ! In the first few minutes, you’ll feel the poise and natural mobility you get in the saddle !”

Bruno Baup :
“Cast aside your previous sensations and expectations! Just tune in to what you feel when you sit on this saddle. “

Many thanks to our two partners for answering our questions.

If you want to try out our new show jumping saddle, please book an appointment with our expert in your local area.