‘Pray for Clooney’: European Champion in vet hospital after serious injury

  • Clooney 51, the Olympic ride of Swiss showjumper Martin Fuchs and reigning European champion, is undergoing treatment for a devastating injury, with hopes he may be able to enjoy field retirement.

    The 15-year-old Cornet Obolensky gelding was hurt yesterday morning (16 August) when he slipped and fell in the field.

    “He injured his right shoulder very seriously and everyone involved is doing their best for Clooney’s wellbeing,” said 29-year-old Martin.

    “He is in the Zurich hospital and we are trying to make a retirement on the field possible. At this time I have no further information and will keep everyone updated. Pray for our Clooney.”

    In an update on Tuesday (17 August) Martin said the gelding was “feeling better” than Monday.

    “We take it day by day and hope for the best. If any horse can get through this, it’s Clooney,” he said.

    Clooney, owned by Luigi Baleri, was sourced by Martin’s father Thomas as a seven-year-old. He was described by Martin as a “bit difficult” in the beginning, but the pair soon built up a strong partnership. They competed in the 2015, 2016 and 2017 Nations Cup finals in Barcelona, and were on the Swiss bronze medal-winning team at the Europeans in 2015 and 2017.

    In 2018 Martin and Clooney took individual silver at the World Equestrian Games in Tryon, USA, and in 2019 they were crowned European champions in Rotterdam. The same year they were runners-up in the World Cup final in Gothenburg.

    The Tokyo Games was the combination’s second Olympic appearance, following an individual top-10 placing in Rio in 2016. They qualified for the individual final in Tokyo, but eight jumping faults ruled the pair out of the individual medals. They went on to jump in the team competition alongside Steve Guerdat and Bryan Balsiger. The team made it through to the final, but faults from all three combinations meant Switzerland finished fifth.

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