Dressage star Rembrandt dies

  • Nicole Uphoff’s retired Olympic dressage partner Rembrant has died at the age of 24

    The legendary dressage horse Rembrandt has died at the age of 24.

    Ridden by his owner Nicole Uphoff, Rembrandt took part in three consecutive Olympic Games the combination claiming their first individual gold medal in Seoul in 1998 when Nicole was just 22 and the youngest dressage winner ever.

    In nine years of grand prix competition together they amassed an incredible haul of 21 gold, three silver and one bronze medals.

    Rembrandt by Romadour II out of the mare Adone by the Thoroughbred Angelo was considered to be one of the first of the modern German dressage horse.

    His extravagant movement combined with lightness and elegance attracted many admirers, although at times his Thoroughbred temperament was never far from the surface.

    FEI judge Nick Williams judged the combination at the Seoul and Barcelona Olympics, onboth occasions completing his score sheet with the perfect 10.

    He said: “I have had the privilege to judge many great horses, but Rembrandt was a special horse and an exhilarating horse to judge as he epitomised impulsion with absolute lightness.Within two strides he was in maximum extension and within two strides in maximum collection with lightness – but you could never see Nicole doing anything – they had an amazing telepathic rapport.”

    In 1994, it looked as though his high profile career was to end after a disastrous prize-giving ceremony at the German national championships when Rembrandt received a kick from another horse taking a chip off the stifle.

    He made a full recovery to comeback to top-class competition and at the age of 18 took part in the Atlanta Olympics, although somewhat controversially as they were left out of the German squad and Nicole decided to compete as her right to defend their Olympic title.

    The combination finished in 14th place and Rembrandt was retired soon after.

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