A top horse lost in a freak accident and other things the equestrian world is talking about

Horse & Hound’s daily debrief, brought to you every weekday

  • A sad farewell

    Multiple medal-winning Danish dressage horse Horsebo Smarties has died as a result of a freak accident caused by a low-flying jet plane. The 22-year-old gelding, who won Paralympic, world and European medals with Stinna Tange Kaastrup, had been retired since 2018 with his owner/breeder Helle Kristiansen. It is understood that he sustained fatal injuries when he was spooked by the plane.
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    A new auction

    Horse & Hound’s daily debrief, brought to you every weekday morningA new open auction of youngsters is aimed to boost British breeding. Shirley Light of Brendon Stud in West Sussex is organising the BEST (British Elite Sporthorse Talent) auction this weekend (11-12 November). The 19 three-year-olds on offer include a few of her own, plus those bred by Shane Breen, Carron Nicol and Oakingham Stud, among others. Shirley told H&H the idea “popped out of my head”. “The aim is to promote British breeding,” she said. “It’s time this country grew a pair and put on a good sale like this!”
    Find out more about the sale

    A proposed U-turn

    The FEI is set to reverse a controversial dressage rule change that increased the qualifying score needed to progress in CDI4* and CDI5* shows. Since the start of this year, riders have had to score at least 65% in the grand prix to participate in the grand prix special or the freestyle at CDI4* and CDI5* shows. The rule was not received well when it was introduced and caused disappointment among riders and event organisers. The CDI4* at the Global Dressage Festival in Wellington only had six combinations progress to the freestyle as a result of the rule and several riders described the change as not in line with the FEI’s mandate to promote participation and interest in the sport. It has now been proposed that the qualifying percentage should revert to 60%.
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