Good news, bad news, for British equestrianism

Uthopia, the 15-year-old stallion who was purchased by a mystery buyer last month at a Northern Ireland auction, will be staying with his trainer, Carl Hester.

For a month, the fate of Uthopia was unknown. Carl, the man behind the gold medal success of British dressage at the 2012 Olympics, had tried to raise money to buy the horse that was embroiled in an ownership dispute, but to no avail.

Since then, according to British Dressage, “negotiations have taken place and the horse has now been purchased on Carl’s behalf by a supporter who wishes to remain anonymous.”

olympic dressage gp 1st day no. 373 car hester uthopia 300dpi
Carl Hester on Uthopia at the 2012 Olympics. (Photo by Nancy Jaffer)

Carl commented; “I couldn’t have asked for a better early birthday present – this is the best news and the team are all very happy now we know ‘Uti’ is staying at home. It’s been a stressful time but I must thank the parties concerned in getting to this outcome, all have been professional and made it exceptionally easy.

Those involved wish to remain anonymous and I hope that everyone can respect that but they have my extreme gratitude. I must also thank all the supporters of British dressage for their good wishes and encouragement, it’s meant a lot to me and my team. This a happy ending and will make my birthday celebrations this year extra special!”

The ending isn’t as happy for British show jumping. Scott Brash, who has been ranked previously as the number one rider in the world, won’t be going to the Rio Olympics. Scott, a member of the 2012 gold medal team, explained that his two top horses, Hello Sanctos (his 2012 mount) and Hello M’Lady have not recovered sufficiently from minor injuries incurred earlier this season and aren’t fit to compete at the Games.

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