Paralympian Lee Pearson MBE is being forced to put his top horse on the market, despite securing a welcome £15,000 sponsorship deal.

The triple gold medallist at Sydney has made the tough decision to sell his stunning nine-year-old, 17.2hh dun gelding, Blue Circle Boy (‘Gus’), the reigning Dressage Horse of the Year, who has competed at Medium level.

Staffordshire-based Lee, 29, needs the money to trade in his leased automatic 4×4 and his own trailer for an automatic lorry – costing between £20,000 and £60,000.

“I compete twice a week and it’s so time-consuming to keep hitching and unhitching the trailer,” says Lee, although he’ll only let the Hanoverian X Welsh Cob go “to a 10-star home for a substantial offer”.

“Gus is an exceptional horse and I would have liked to see him through to Grand Prix. But he is my biggest asset and I could really do with the cash.”

Meanwhile, sponsorship from Dudley College will help fund a groom for a year, vital in Lee’s bid to retain individual and team gold medals at the World Championships in Belgium this September. The money will also benefit Lee’s preparation for next year’s Olympics.

Lee will compete at the championships on new ride Donnerkind (‘Monica’), an eight-year-old, black 15.2hh Oldenburg former brood mare. This daughter of Donnerhall is currently working at Prelim/Novice level and has been consistently chalking up 80% in para dressage tests.

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