One-eyed Hickstead legend to retire at this year’s Derby

  • One-eyed wonder horse and Hickstead great Adventure de Kannan is to be officially retired at this year’s Al Shira’aa Derby meeting (22-25 June).

    The Irish sport horse gelding, one of the most prolific and consistent horses in Hickstead’s history, will step down from international competition in a ceremony in front of crowds before this year’s Derby on 25 June.

    Rider Trevor Breen and owner Karen Swann felt the time is right to retire “Addy” at the age of 17.

    I didn’t think it was fair to him to keep going, and I don’t want to be unfair to a horse who has given me everything,” Trevor said. “He’s helped me so much in my career and won so much for me. I want to retire him at the top.

    “I’m obviously going to be extremely sad when he retires, but I’m also going to feel proud.”

    Addy won the speed derby on his international Hickstead debut in 2009, followed by a win in the eventing grand prix at the Royal International Horse Show (RIHS) three years later. The same year, he and Trevor finished third in the Derby and won the grand prix at Hickstead’s September show.

    In 2013, a few months after Addy’s eye was removed, he and Trevor finished second in the Derby to Phillip Miller and Caritiar Z, but the following year the placings were reversed, with Trevor and the one-eyed wonder horse taking the lead from Phillip by two-hundredths of a second

    The same year, the combination won the Queen Elizabeth II Cup at the RIHS.

    “Addy’s achievements will forever stand out in Hickstead’s history books, as the only horse to win the speed derby, the eventing grand prix, the all England grand prix, the Queen Elizabeth II cup and the Derby,” said a spokesman for the course.

    Very few horses have been given retirement ceremonies in Hickstead’s international arena; the last being William Funnell’s triple Derby-winning ride Mondriaan in 2011.

    “Addy deserves to have one last moment of glory here at the showground where he made his name,” said Hickstead director Lizzie Bunn. “He’s gathered a legion of fans thanks to his achievements here.

    “He has overcome several setbacks to become a multiple Hickstead champion, and he will always be remembered for his consistency and brilliance. We’ll be sad to say farewell, but he definitely deserves a long and happy retirement.”

    Addy will enjoy an “active retirement” with Karen, who jumped him to 1.20m and evented him to two-star level before Trevor took the ride.

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