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Top dressage stallion Donnerhall dies

The dressage world’s most successful stallion Donnerhall has died at the age of 21 following a colic attack

The Oldenburger dressage stallion Donnerhall died at the age of 21 at his home in Gr”nwohldhof, Germany, following a colic attack.

The chesnut stallion by Donnerwetter made his mark in international dressage competitions, as well as in the world of sport horse breeding.

Donnerhall was bred by OttoG„rtner, but spent most of his life at the famous stud and dressage training centre Gr”nwohldhof, north of Hamburg, where he was schooled to grand prix level by the late Herbert Rehbein. He was competed at top level by Herr Rehbein’s wife and pupil Karin.

Karin Rehbein won 120 competitions at the highest level (class S), the most prestigious results being the two individual championship bronze medals – the World Equestrian Games in The Hague in 1994 and The European Championship at Verden in 1997.

This combination also won team gold on both occasions, as well as at the World Equestrian Games in Rome in 1998.

Donnerhall was retired at the age of 17 and spent his last years at Gr”nwohldhof as one of the most popular stallions in German sport horse breeding, covering about 500 mares each season by artificial insemination.

The 16.3hh dark chesnut Oldenburg stallion was responsible for establishing new breeding lines in nearly every German sport horse bred.

Karin Rehbein described Donnerhall as the horse of her lifetime.

“He had no vices and always gave his best. He was a real companion, one you never get twice in your life”, she said.

Read more on this story in Horse &Hound issue dated 24 January 2002

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