to a horse better at the national levels? “Not necessarily too different,” he replies. “I am convinced there are many fantas- tic horses out there that could’ve been stars if given the right training and the right program. Many horses never get to show their true potential.” As for testing and teaching a horse to jump at speed, he

points to two key factors. “Training and patience,” he says. “With time and training, even a slow mover can become very competitive and a winner. Look at HH Azur and McLain Ward—one of the fastest combinations in the world, and Azur wasn’t a fast young horse.”

Greg Broderick

At his family’s Ballypatrick Stables in County Tipperary, Ireland, Greg breeds and trains young jumpers. His most successful horse is MHS Going Global (Quidam Junior x Cavalier Royale), the Irish Sport Horse he rode in the 2016 Olympic Games. Greg spotted the potential in Going Global (“Junior”) and bought him as a five-year-old. “He was quite a tough horse when young,” he says about their meeting in 2015. “His breeder sent the horse to me to ride. Having ridden him for several weeks, I felt he was a super talented horse.” What sold Greg about the bay, despite the challenges

he presented, was the horse’s size and scope, with a big canter stride. That excellent stride contributed to finalist placings as a six- and seven-year-old at the FEI World Breed- ing Jumping Championships for Young Horses in Lanaken, Belguim. At eight, Junior was named the Irish National Champion.

“He has a lot of blood, because his grandmother, his

great grandmother and his great great grandmother are all by Irish Thoroughbred stallions,” he says. He lists them as

Marwood xx, Bahrain xx and Ozymandias xx. “With that kind of blood in his pedigree he’s able to cope with the heat here [at Thermal].”

He adds jumping in large arenas suits the horse, who’s

jumped at the prestigious Dublin Horse Show. “He’s a top class horse and he shows himself off the best in these big rings. It lets him use his canter stride and use his scope.” As a youngster, Junior would sometimes buck. “I always

believed in the horse since I rode him as a young horse,” Buck says. “In the ring he’s always brave, but he’s a tough horse on the flat. When I have the flat work right, in the ring he’s very good. He has a lovely balanced canter and a snaffle mouth.” He praises the horse’s athleticism, saying, “He’s a horse

that when you need to add a stride it’s quite easy to adjust him. If you need to leave a stride out, it’s also possible because he has such a big canter stride.” On course, the abil- ity to do both—add or leave out a stride in an instant—is part of an exceptional jumper’s skillset, he continues. “His rideability is so good in the ring which helps to jump these big tracks so easily.”

Constant Search Identifying a superstar isn’t easy. Riders frequently test many horses on their quest for an Olympic or world cham- pionship partner. Finding the genius jumper means sifting through “normal” horses, whose limit may be the national level grand prix. Luck also plays a part—how and when a rider and horse meet and if their personalities click. Horse dealers based abroad often assist in locating prospects for their rider clients. One example is Emil Hendrix of Stal Hendrix, the Netherlands, who’s sourced horses like Super Sox (Lily Keenan), Anthem (Laura Kraut), Big Ben (Ian Millar) and Conthendrix (Andre Thieme). With limited numbers of the greatest equine athletes,

top riders may lack “horsepower” at various times in their careers. Our best riders may endure months or years search- ing for the right horse—and could wait for years to locate a brilliant candidate who could become a superstar at the international levels. Some horsemen have made a career of bringing jump-

ers up to the CSI level and then selling them to others to campaign to the top. Also, as Jill Henselwood mentions, a third party often invests in the horse’s future. Willing spon- sors for our top riders can make the difference between them riding or sitting on the sidelines.

   In the next issue we’ll feature insights from U.S. Olympic

and World Championship dressage riders to learn how they identify international superstars.

Greg Broderick and MHS Going Global in the SmartPak Grand Prix, March 2015, at the HITS Desert Circuit, Thermal, California.

Warmbloods Today 17

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