Isabell Werth officially retired her 2008 Olympic mount Satchmo from competition in a special ceremony at the 2011 CDI Stuttgart on Saturday evening (19 November).
Isabell said she was fighting back the tears as the 8000-strong crowd clapped and gave him a standing ovation.
“I remembered a moment eleven years ago when I said goodbye to Gigolo in the same place, 11 years of successes, failure, ups and downs and with the birth of [my son] little Frederik.
“Over those 11 years Satchie has been my daily challenge. I don’t just owe him a lot, I have also learned a lot from him.”
Although Satchmo is still completely fit and healthy, with seven grand prix horses Isabell said she sees no need for 17-year-old Hanoverian to continue to compete in 2012.
“Satchmo does not deserve not being the number one. He has achieved many medals and titles at championships and won over 75 grand prix tests.”
Highlights of their partnership include a grand prix world record score at the 2005 CDI Stuttgart and team gold, grand prix special gold and kur bronze at the 2006 World Equestrian Games.
They won team silver and Special Gold at the 2007 European Championship and team gold and individual silver at the 2008 Olympic games.
Werth will continue to ride Satchmo at home.
“He wouldn’t understand it if I were not riding him at all,” she said.