Jagerbomb – meet Becky Moody’s charismatic home-bred star and ‘total legend’

  • Jagerbomb (Dante Weltino x Jazz) is the top ride of Becky Moody and has emerged as one of the country’s most exciting, and charismatic, team prospects.

    “He always wants to make people happy, and he’s such a happy person himself,” Becky told Horse & Hound in an interview last summer. “If he was a human, he’d always go up to people at a party and say hello.”

    However, as a young horse, Becky wasn’t sure Jagerbomb had what it takes to reach the upper echelons of the sport.

    Jagerbomb’s early years

    Jagerbomb was bred by Becky and he’s out of Udysee, a mare Becky trained up to grand prix. He was born at the yard of Becky’s long-time supporter Julie Lockey.

    “Jagerbombs are my favourite drink and I’ve always wanted to name a horse after it,” explained Becky. “So it was heaven sent when the mare produced me a beautiful J-reg colt to name!

    “He was always so easy to deal with as a young horse and he was very straightforward to back. But he wasn’t very athletic and he didn’t have that look at me factor. That’s why I didn’t do young horse classes with him.”

    Instead, Jagerbomb had a handful of outings at novice as a four-year-old, under Becky and her then-stable rider Joshua Mellor.

    In 2019 he qualified for both the NAF Five Star Winter Dressage Championships and the LeMieux National Dressage Championships with Becky. However, he finished behind his stablemate James Bond II (Desperado x Fidertranz) on both occasions.

    Becky Moody and Jagerbomb at the 2022 Le Mieux National Dressage Championships.

    “It was no secret that I would have sold him at that point but I’m so glad now I didn’t,” Becky admits. “But I never thought he would end up being my top horse. As a youngster, he was almost lazy and didn’t articulate his joints very well and he didn’t have mega movement.

    “But he always had the most incredible heart and is such a trier – I could never fault his temperament.”

    Jagerbomb’s national breakthrough came when he won the seven-year-old final and was twice runner-up in the prix st georges (PSG) classes to Charlotte Dujardin and Imhotep at the National Championships.

    Becky Moody: “I think he could be pretty epic”

    I remember in the seven-year-old class he just piaffed throughout the prize giving. It was such a lovely feeling that the energy and excitement created that reaction in him.”

    From that point on, Jagerbomb went from strength to strength. In 2022, he took home all the small tour titles at the Winter Championships.

    “As he’s getting stronger, he is getting sharper and sharper,” Becky told H&H at the time. “I probably only school him three times a week, which isn’t much for a horse at his level. He does a lot of hacking and hill work. I’m really conscious that I don’t overwork him.”

    His international debut came three months later at Hartpury CDI where he again scored a hat-trick of small tour wins.

    A delighted Becky Moody on Jagerbomb during the 2023 London International Horse Show.

    The pair were almost 6% ahead of their nearest competitor in the inter I, winning with 77.32%. This show is also where Becky debuted Jagerbomb’s now signature Sex Bomb routine.

    “I think the music really suits him,” Becky told H&H following her win. “It’s thanks to Kim Masson, my groom – she suggested Tom Jones. I resisted for a long time, then finally accepted that cheesy was good!”

    At this point in his career, Jagerbomb had only dropped below 70% once and had 31 wins from 52 starts. But despite making headlines, Becky was still unsure if Jagerbomb could make the step up to being a top-level competitor.

    “My concern has always been whether he would have a good enough engine to keep going all the way through, it’s a hell of a task,” she said.

    “But those wins gave me confidence that he will because I think the more atmosphere he has, the better he is – I think he could be pretty epic.”

    Becky Moody: “There’s still so much more to come

    More wins followed at the National Championships – despite Becky suffering a collapsed lung less than a month before the championships – and in the Dressage Future Elite Championships, cemented Jagerbomb’s status as the most exciting small tour horse of 2022.

    Jagerbomb made his grand prix debut in February 2023, winning with 76.09% at Reaseheath College.

    His international debut came in May at Hickstead CDI3* where he was fourth in the grand prix on 71.02% and won his first ever international grand prix freestyle on 75.71%.

    His scores continued to rise at internationals at Wellington and Hartpury, topping out at 79.99% in the freestyle at Hartpury.

    Becky explained at the time why she opted to enter the freestyles over specials in Jagerbomb’s first grand prix year.

    “We’re not quite special ready yet, purely from a strength point of view – the special is a long test and he’s big and young,” she said. “But he’s such a dude and tries his heart out each time.”

    The rest of 2023 was something of a highlights reel for the combination. Together they were selected as reserves for the European Dressage Championships team – an achievement Becky describes as “simply insane”.

    Becky Moody and Jagerbomb on their Nations Cup debut at Compiègne.

    While their stand-in services were not ultimately called upon, the pair managed to pip Carl Hester and En Vogue to the freestyle title at the National Championships. “It shows that temperament and trainability trumps all,” Becky said following her win.

    A terrific debut performance at the London International Horse Show followed, where the pair finished third in the grand prix (75.09%) and the freestyle (83.67%) on personal best scores.

    Kim Masson: “He’s an absolute legend of a horse”

    “He was phenomenal and loved every moment of it and I think you can see that on his face,” said Becky. “I came here for many, many years watching and getting to ride here has taken quite a long time. But I’m here now.

    “The bigger the crowd, the better he is – he just thrives on it and really wants to do it. He came down the centre line saying ‘let’s go’, which is amazing.”

    Reflecting on Jagerbomb’s breakout year, Becky’s groom Kim picked LIHS as her highlight. “I was an emotional wreck after Becky had done the straight grand prix,” she said.

    “I think it took me until after I’d finished washing him off and cooling him down to stop crying because I was just that proud of him. He’s an absolute legend of a horse – I can’t stress that enough.”

    Jagerbomb has since become a regular at international level and has been selected for British Nations Cup teams.

    “There’s still so much more to come from him,” added Becky. “Now he’s consolidated at the level it’s just about developing him and getting into the nitty-gritty of the movements. We’re in a really exciting place at the moment.”

    You may also be interested in…

    Horse & Hound magazine, out every Thursday, is packed with all the latest news and reports, as well as interviews, specials, nostalgia, vet and training advice. Find how you can enjoy the magazine delivered to your door every week, plus options to upgrade your subscription to access our online service that brings you breaking news and reports as well as other benefits.

    You may like...