As she finished her grand prix test at the Tokyo Olympics yesterday, Larissa Pauluis raised a hand to wave to the camera and viewers saw that there was a red heart on the palm of her white glove and the letters GREG on the fingers.
Although the ink had run slightly because the Belgian rider performed during a brief heavy downpour, for those who know Larissa’s story, it was a poignant moment.
“It’s a message for my husband, because he died last year from a heart attack,” explained an emotional Larissa, who lost husband Grégoire Naslin suddenly in May 2020.
“I just want to have a nice word for him because I keep him in my mind and my heart and I miss him so much.”
Larissa scored 67.251% with the Ampere son Flambeau. The 11-year-old was previously used as a breeding stallion, so he lacks mileage at larger events. He did one international competition at small tour in February 2020, then came out at international grand prix in April 2021.
“He has the capacity to be a top horse one day, but he is a bit young for this kind of stuff – he doesn’t have a lot of experience,” said Larissa.
“It’s easy for him to be impressed by all the things around the arena and tricky for him to do some work inside it. He’s a bit afraid of everything, but I trust him and have all the confidence in him.”
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