Windy, rainy weekend ... seemed like it would be time well spent getting together what I need for my income tax return. Luckily, I came across some old photos instead :). This sorrel Quarter Horse gelding, Leo Mano, was my first "serious" horse, and we did everything together. I got him when he was about 7 years old, I think, and I was in my early twenties. He was a direct grandson of the famous "Leo", and had been used at stud himself before he became available as a riding horse. I think he did his ancestor proud. Leo had a fabulous disposition, never refused what I asked of him, and was competitive enough on the horse show circuit to be a lot of fun; I continued to show for many years. He certainly inherited his speed from his famous grandfather, and left many challengers watching him from behind. Because he had been left as a stud for so long, Leo had all the musculature normally associated with stallions, the heavy neck, fore and hindquarters, but was always a gentleman. I owned a number of horses after we parted ways, but I never had another horse that meant as much to me. He was a great friend, and a great horse.
Although primarily ridden and shown under Western tack, Leo could extend his gaits and moved just as well going English.
The branded "4" on his shoulder was still common practice on the bigger ranches in states like Texas.