Just 9 days after the death of Parcival, Tim Stockdale said goodbye to another of his great greys — Santa’s Echo. The Irish-bred 33-year-old died at his owners, the Chubbs’, home (19 May).
Tim described Santa’s Echo as an out-and-out winner — he landed 5 grands prix in 1997, represented GB and won a Nations Cup.
“He was such a special horse,” said Tim. “He was a bit of a scallywag, who had to believe that he was in charge.
“He was super talented, careful and quick, but not the type to be told what to do — everything had to be on his terms.
Tim said that he was typically Irish, with “a lovely head and intelligent eye”.
“He was anti-training and hated going round in circles,” said Tim, who started riding him when he was 8, by which time he had also been jumped by Jimmy Lister, Geoff Billington and Alan Clutterbuck. “He liked going out in the field and hacking. But once you had the key to him, he was a real winner.”
Santa’s Echo was retired from the international stage after injuring a tendon at Hickstead aged 16. The pair were last reunited in a veteran class at Horse of the Year Show in 2008. He spent his retirement with the Chubbs.
“He used to hack along the Sussex Downs, and became a local celebrity,” said Tim. “He lived to a super age, but it feels like all my old horses made a pact to go together.”
Tim’s brilliant speed horse, Glenwood Springs, also passed away this year, aged 26.