What is the purpose of backing an 18 month or 20 month old horse? We hear the defence that well race horses do it, they prepare them for futurities at this age...well two wrongs don't make a right, and if you are not involved in these industries, then WHY? There is good evidence that horses bones don't mature until a lot later. http://www.hoofrehab.com/ArticlesPDF/Timing and Rate of skeletal maturation in Horses.pdf so why risk compromising a youngster right at the start, why not wait? I know that there are those who do it, but my question is why? what makes you ignore the evidence and start them?