International showjumping star Toveks Mary Lou has retired following a career boasting multiple medals and some of the sport’s biggest grands prix wins.
The 15-year-old mare (Montendro x Portland L) started her glittering career with Germany’s Alexander Kernebeck and Karl Schneider before forming a formidable partnership with top Swedish rider Henrik von Eckermann. The pair are currently ranked seventh in the world as a combination.
“Of course I knew the day would come but not this soon!” said Henrik. “Toveks Mary Lou got an injury at Geneva December 2019. She had a long break after that and everything was looking very promising, but one day before she was supposed to go back to her first show she was again not okay.
“To be realistic she would need another year before we could think of going back to the sport, so her owners, the Tovek family, and I have taken the decision to retire her from the sport.”
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The combination were on the silver medal-winning squad at the 2017 European Championships and also helped Sweden to team silver and Tokyo Olympic qualification at the 2018 World Equestrian Games. They were also on the third-placed team at the 2019 Nations Cup final and competed at three World Cup finals, finishing third in both 2017 and 2018.
The pair’s biggest wins included the 2019 Dutch Masters, which is also a leg of the Rolex Grand Slam of Showjumping, and the 2019 Royal Windsor grand prix. They also have countless top placings at other CSI5* grands prix, including finishing second at Geneva 2017 and at Valence and Dinard in 2018.
British fans will also have seen this outstanding partnership winning at the London Global Champions Tour in 2017 and competing at Olympia in 2018.
Henrik added: “I don’t think I have to explain how much this mare has been giving me in life and what she means to me.
“I don’t want to see this as an end, it’s just a chapter that’s closing and I’m looking forward to seeing her next one as hopefully a great mother.”
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