From Badminton to Cheltenham, Olympia to the Rolex Grand Slam, we love nothing more than watching the world’s most beautiful and talented competition horses do what they do best.
As proud sponsors of the Horse & Hound Professional Rider of the Year Award as well as great believers that “there is no I in team”, SPILLERS brings you a list of the top 5 competition horses who contributed to their rider’s success:
The legendary show jumper, who was famously ridden by John Whitaker, undoubtedly remains as one of the greatest and much loved horses within the equine industry. Milton, a grey British Sport Horse gelding who stood at 16.3hh, was known for being the first horse outside of racing to have collected more than £1m in prize money whilst partnered with John.
Milton died in July 1999 and is buried on the Whitakers' farm in Yorkshire.
The current king of dressage, Valegro also known as Blueberry, is often labelled as “The Dancing Horse”. He and his loyal rider, Charlotte Dujardin, have beaten every world record and taken home nearly every medal there is within the prestigious Dressage domain and not to mention won the team and individual gold at the 2012 London Olympics. Standing at 16.2hh the stunning bay, warmblood gelding is kept at co-owner, Carl Hester’s yard in Gloucestershire. Interesting fact: Charlotte Dujardin has never fallen off Valegro.
14 year old gelding and show jumping royalty, Hello Sanctos, has fast become a competition sensation amongst the equine community. The bay Belgium Sport Horse who is ridden by the equally talented Scott Brash, has achieved the ultimate success including winning team gold at the 2012 London Olympics, the Global Champions Tour in 2013 and 2014, several LGCT Grand Prix wins and most notably the highly regarded 2015 Rolex Grand Slam. Hello Sanctos has collected more than £1m in prize money.
Possibly one of the greatest National Hunt racehorses in history, Kauto Star was a French-bred thoroughbred who, in his prime, was trained by Paul Nicholls in Somerset. Foaled in 2000, the stunning bay gelding famously won the prestigious Cheltenham Gold Cup twice as well as winning the King George VI Chase a record five times. In 2012, Kauto Star finished his racing career with a National Hunt record of £3,775,883 in earnings. He was sadly put to sleep in June 2015 after sustaining a serious injury when falling in his paddock.
Eventing superstar, Supreme Rock, was an Irish Sports Horse ridden by British eventer Pippa Funnell. Standing at 16.3hh, the big gelding is best known for winning team silver with Pippa at the 2000 Sydney Olympics and winning the elite Badminton Horse Trials two consecutive years in a row in 2002 and 2003. Together, Supreme Rock alongside Pippa’s other top ride, Primmore’s Pride helped Pippa to win the elite Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing in 2003.
Which epic competition horse would you add to this list? Share your suggestions in the comments below!