Former Hickstead Derby winner dies after heart attack

  • Former Hickstead Derby winner Skip Two Ramiro has died at the age of 20.

    Guy Williams said it was with “great sadness” that he heard of the death of the Belgian warmblood gelding, with whom he took the Derby title in 2010.

    Guy said: “He was a real soldier, winning just under £400,000, most of which was won on the national circuit.

    He made my dream come true in 2010 when he won the Hickstead Derby, jumping a double clear finishing over 10 seconds faster then Promised Land [ridden by Tina Fletcher]!

    “He had been enjoying his semi-retirement with my friends the Boulter family, jumping a few shows and spending time in the paddock.”

    Shirley Light of Brendon Stud, who bought “Barney” as a two-year-old from his breeder in Belgium, said he died last night (31 August) from a heart attack.

    “He was a great horse,” she told H&H.

    He was bought on the same trip as we got Unbelievable Darco [who went on to win the Foxhunter championship and was a successful showjumping sire] so it was a good shopping trip all round.

    “The Flintstones film was released that day, hence the stable names Fred and Barney. We knew he was a good horse.”

    Shirley was at the All England Jumping Championships at Hickstead when she spoke to H&H today.

    “It’s fitting as this was his favourite showground,” she said.

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    “He loved it from when he was a youngster, winning young horse classes here. He won at Hickstead from the word go.

    “I remember he did the Masters at Arena UK as a seven- or eight-year-old and Michael Whitaker rode him. He said: ‘Is he called Skip Two Ramiro because he skips?’

    “I said no, it’s because he’s by Skippy II but he would always do a little skip to the side – he skipped through life from beginning to end.”

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