“I’ve never had a horse like this – it feels like we are one.”
Meet the one-eyed mare who nearly bucks her rider off in the warm-up, who loves jumping and has to think it’s all her idea – and who is “a family member”.
Wilma said the 12-year-old Swedish warmblood, who lost her eye in a freak accident five years ago, is “a very spicy girl when she wants to be”.
“She almost bucked me off in the warm-up today; it was very close!” she said.
“It’s got worse since the accident, because when she gets a bit excited and can’t see, she kicks out to the right.
“But at home she is the laziest horse you can ever find. She won’t do anything. She will not move. So it’s actually only at shows. And she loves to be at shows.”
It was at a competition that the accident happened; the mare rolled in her stable and hit her head on the wall, and her eye could not be saved.
After she recovered, she came back into work slowly but surely, and the pair have progressed up the levels to their first senior championship.
“It’s only since last year that both of us are actually jumping at this level,” Wilma said. “It feels like we are one; I’ve never had a horse like this, I can ride her without reins basically. It’s like I just think, she does.”
Wilma Hellström said she cannot try to tell the mare what to do, but has to let her do her thing.
“If she starts, I just drop the reins and pat her and then she’ll go whenever she feels like going. She’s the boss – she’s a family member.”
You might also be interested in:
Showjumping fans gave Adventure De Kannan a rousing reception during his official retirement ceremony at Hickstead
With the news that a one-eyed horse called Patch has been entered into the Kentucky Derby this Saturday (6 May
Horse & Hound has a team of reporters covering all the European showjumping action. To keep reading on our website after five articles, readers will need to buy a subscription. Visit horseandhound.co.uk/join to buy a Horse & Hound website unlimited subscription or, for great value, visit magazinesdirect.com for a combined magazine and website subscription. If you are already a magazine subscriber, the cost to upgrade your subscription to include full website access is minimal – call 0330 333 1113 to find out more.