Dutch rider Patrik van der Meer’s European Championships team gold medal-winning ride Uzzo has been sold.
However, the 14-year-old gelding by Emma Hindle’s Lancet will remain at Patrick’s yard, as the new owner, an under-25 rider, will train with him.
“I’ve always said I’d sell Uzzo at some point,” said Patrick. “There was a lot of demand for him lately, though negotiations with the new owner have been going on for a few months, though I kept the ride for the European Championships.
Life won’t change a great deal for the leggy gelding as he reamins at Patrik’s base.
“It is of course a pity for the KNHS [Dutch national federation] and for our country that a horse such as him won’t be available for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, but I have had Uzzo a long time.”
“He has brought me a lot. We were world champions of the young horses in Verden, I got to ride at the London Olympics with him, and last month the European Championships in Aachen. The team gold medal was a wonderful finish.”
The rider still has many talented horses in his string, not least the stallions President’s Chagall D&R (by Jazz out of the same mare, Annabel, as Bretton woods) and President’s Jack Sparrow, a talented Johnson son.
The better horses get, the greater the pressure on their riders and connections to sell them, particularly in the run-up to an Olympics. There are likely to be many more horse sales over the next few months ahead of Rio 2016 as horses must be in the ownership of the nation for whom they compete by the end of the previous year, so 31 December is crunch time for new rides.