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“In 2004, the year he won the Rolex and went to the

Games, he also bred thirty mares, all by transported cooled semen of course,” Dr. Holekamp adds. “Darren has said repeatedly that this did not at any time distract him from training or performing, through the many years we had him on double-duty. It is still true today.” During his competition

career, Windfall sired dozens of highly successful offspring. Windfall’s progeny include four National Young Event Horse Champions and Reserve Champions in the United States and Canada, as well as upper- level event prospects that are still being developed. “I’ve been in it long enough

Cheryl has taken over the duties of exercising the flashy stallion and she’s confirmed that he has a natural aptitude for dressage. “There’s no real telling where things will go next,” Dr.

One of Windfall’s offspring: Kalamata, out of Kosette (ridden by Michael Larsen) placed third at the 4-Year-Old YEH championship at Fair Hill in October 2009.

that I’m now riding Windfall’s children in competition,” Darren says with a smile. “Winning the 2007 Five Year Old Young Event Horse Championship on [Windfall’s son] Hanno was huge because that’s really what a stallion is all about: his progeny.” Two other Windfall sons that Dr. Holekamp bred,

Asterion and Project Runway, have both won multiple national Young Event Horse titles under their teen-aged owner/riders.

What’s Next?

Now that Windfall has retired from eventing and has taken up residence at the Holekamps’ New Spring Farm, he has a new life ahead of him, though of course he will focus on producing more top quality foals. Dr. Holekamp’s wife

Holekamp admits. “He is going to be 18 years old in April and has earned whatever rest he wants and needs. We still jump him a bit, for his own pleasure actually, but he is working fairly hard in dressage under Cheryl and with the help of Pierre St. Jacques. The idea is to give this highly talented all- around horse a chance to see how far he can go in dressage. Horses trained in upper level eventing very rarely go on in FEI dressage but this one just might make it to Grand Prix.” “Robert Dover has coached and ridden him numerous

times and he says it is definitely possible,” the doctor continues. “We will see. Cheryl is experienced training to Grand Prix and Windfall is an incredible learning-machine when it comes to daily lesson work. They are making pretty amazing progress, especially when you consider how old this dog is, and how few dogs can ever do these tricks. Right now today he is ready to show at Prix St. Georges but there appears to be much more inside there. It’s just a matter of time and soundness, we think.” “He doesn’t do any silly stuff really,” recounts Dr.

Holekamp. “He is a typical noble horse. He’s very much aware of his specialness, of his duties as a stallion and of his relationship of mutual respect with humans. Really, he is kind of an aloof horse, a noble tough-guy warrior without ugly misbehaviors. His aisle manners are impeccable. Little children have been put on his back and walked around for photos. He has traveled a million miles and goes in a trailer without trouble, even with mares. He is a real show horse and no horse is better at it than he. I think that there really is a relationship between this group of traits and top-performing military riding horses of the old days.” Whether or not Windfall ever makes it

Cheryl Holekamp schools Windfall this past winter in Ocala, Florida.

into the competitive FEI dressage arena won’t really matter since he will always be the American eventing stallion. He’s won the hearts of millions leaving his owner and rider with very special memories about this once-in-a-lifetime horse. Not every horse can live up to his name. Windfall, however, did just that.

WT

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