What are the chances? Home-bred full-brothers finish a whisker apart in their first 5* competition


    When Belgian warmblood full-brothers Kir Royal SCF and Kirschwasser SCF were born at Spy Coast Farm in Kentucky, their owners could not have dreamed that, eight years on, they’d be finishing within a whisker of each other at the top of the podium in their first five-star competition.

    The two sons of Amaretto D’Arco, out of Werly Chin De Muze (by Nabab De Reve) finished first and second in the $35,000 1.45m power and speed stake at Tryon CSI5* in USA on Wednesday, 17 October, under Irish rider David O’Brien.

    The pair were separated by barely one second in an 11-strong jump-off, with Kir Royal SCF just taking the advantage over his four-months-younger brother.

    “This is their first time doing a five-star competition and they’ve really moved up to the bigger levels now,” said David, who is head trainer for Spy Coast Farms. “The future looks promising.”

    The bay Kir Royal and chestnut Kirschwasser were bred by Lisa Lourie of Spy Coast Farm, and each was born via embryo transfer. The former was the first North America-born foal from their flagship stallion Amaretto D’Arco, who died two years ago, and Lisa’s first embryo transfer from the mare, who had previously produced foals overseas. As well as the four-month younger gelding Kirschwasser, other full-brothers bred at Spy Coast Farms include the seven-year-old L’Aquavit SCF and the six-year-old Manhattan SCF.

    David has been producing the up-and-coming brothers through the Developing Jumper Series in USA.

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    “You need those kind of young horse classes to develop these horses,” said David. “This facility is definitely a great place to bring these horses along, especially for me since I have young horses and stallions.

    “It’s great to be able to pick and choose FEI classes for your upcoming mounts. For instance, there’s a 1.40m class available if you want it, but you’re still jumping against really great horses and you really get to test the calibre of your horse in a safe place.”

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