‘A long and wonderful life’: final farewell to prolific stallion, aged 31

  • Tributes have been paid to the prolific Irish sports horse stallion Carrick Diamond Lad, who has died aged 31.

    Carrick was “part of the family” at Greaghwillan Stud, Co. Monaghan, Ireland, where he was born in 1993. He was by Flagmount Diamond, out of Sky Box XX mare Greaghwillan Pearl.

    Although Carrick never had a competition career owing to a near-fatal fetlock injury he sustained as a foal, he quickly became in demand, and an “exceptional sire in every way”.

    “We had serious belief in him from day one,” Greaghwillan Stud’s Tom Jones told H&H.

    “He was a lamb. You would never think he was a stallion, he would come running up to you in the field and was just so delicate and a loving individual.”

    Many of Carrick Diamond Lad’s progeny have gone on to international competition success. These include Private Heart, who was shortlisted for the Athens Olympics in with eventer Leslie Law, Southway, who competed to CCI4* with Sweden’s Ellen Svennerstal, and showjumper Finest Diamond Clover, who competed to grand prix level with Portugal’s Rui Goncalo.

    More recently, horses such as Carrick Diamond Bard, Carrick Finest Lad, Diamond Duette, and Kiltown Watson have gone on to succeed in eventing. Greaghwillan Stud also has two young Carrick Diamond Lad sons, Carrick Diamond Royale and Carrick Diamonds Diamond, standing at stud.

    “We have been very fortunate with Carrick Diamond Lad,” said Tom. “We’ve sold horses all over the world; America, Kenya, UK, France, Germany, you name it.

    “He is known for producing eventers and showjumpers, but he also produces great leisure horses. That was the beauty of him, he produces horses who are trainable and have his temperament, whether it’s for a professional rider or an amateur – I think that’s a tremendous asset in a stallion. He really stamped his stock, you could pick them out like peas in a pod.”

    Carrick remained “fit and well right up to his passing peacefully in his stable”, and Tom said he will be greatly missed.

    “When he died we received messages, emails and telephone calls from breeders worldwide. He is a sire that will live on through his many offspring,” said Tom.

    “Myself and my family were very, very upset by his loss. We extend our deepest gratitude to everyone who has been part of Carrick’s journey, in particular the staff who lovingly cared for him, ensuring he had the long and wonderful life he deserved.”

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