Despite being described as an “awkward chap”, the quirky Ben Faerie son went on to have an extraordinary eventing record, notching up six gold medals with Ginny Holgate. Kate Green delves deeper into his story
NEVER was a horse more aptly named. Priceless, who cost £1,000 as a four-year-old in 1977, evented for nine seasons with Ginny Holgate (now Elliot) without a single cross-country fault, nor a championship pole down. He was world and European champion, he won Badminton and Burghley and six of his eight medals were gold.
“Mr P” was brainy, awkward and a law unto himself, “an unpredictable little beastie”, as Ginny puts it. You couldn’t use a whip on him or he would buck like mad, he snapped like a crocodile in the stable, he didn’t enjoy schooling and, to the end of his days, refused to be caught.
“If you told him, he would say ‘why?’, so the secret was to ask, to cajole. He was quite an awkward chap,” explains Ginny.
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