‘Her death hit hard’: equestrian community unites in memory of much-loved groom

  • Grooms at shows across Europe have been observing silences and wearing black armbands in memory of “icon” Jenny Ducoffre.

    H&H reported last month that Jenny, the long-standing groom of Belgian showjumper Jos Verlooy and a much-loved figure on the circuit, had died aged 44.

    “Jenny’s death hit hard,” said a spokesperson for online resource and community HorseGrooms.

    “This is evident from the many initiatives taken by various grooms and horse show organisations on the international circuit.

    “She won several awards, including last year during Indoor Friesland in the Netherlands and previously in Hickstead, Great Britain, because of her excellent care for the horses and because she was always willing to help others. The younger and less experienced grooms saw her as an example and their ‘show mum’.”

    In St Gallen, a minute’s silence was observed before the vet check, in Le Touquet it was on the Thursday morning in the main arena, before competition got under way. At the St Tropex leg of the Longines Global Champions Tour, almost all grooms wore something black.

    “After requests from several grooms to ‘do something together’ for Jenny and her family, the international grooms’ platform HorseGrooms has started an online condolence register, or memorial page, where anyone who wants to can share a memory of Jenny or leave a message for her family,” the HorseGrooms spokesperson said.

    “Thanks to a financial contribution from Enviro Equine & Pet, an international company in supplements and care products for horses, all memories and messages will be collected and printed in a book that will be sent to the family in a few weeks.”

    HorseGrooms also cited its online mental health resources for anyone needing support; others are available via the Riders Minds website.

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