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Breakfast at the Four Seasons


From the moment the tall liver chestnut foal stood for the first time on May 30, 2014, his proud owner, Estelle Motta of Mirabel, Quebec, knew her Totilas colt was special. She was also convinced he was destined for one rider, and one rider only: Dutch champion Edward Gal, one of the world’s most famous dressage trainers. Four years later in June of 2018, Estelle sold Total Star, by then 17.2 hands, four years old and an approved Oldenburg (GOV) stallion, to Edward and his sponsor Gaston Glock.


E


dward is certainly no stranger to Total Star’s pedigree. He rode Toti- las, Total Star’s famous sire, to earn


the gold at the 2010 World Equestrian Games, after which the stallion was sold to Germany’s Paul Schockemöhle and made available for breeding. Estelle and Total Star’s story caught the


attention of Warmblood breeders around the world, since it’s quite rare for a North American breeder to sell a young horse to a top European rider. He was also the first Totilas colt born in Quebec, as well as the first licensed GOV Totilas stallion in North America. We caught up with Estelle to learn more about Total Star, his dam and how she was able to connect with Edward.


ESTELLE’S BREEDING VENTURES Estelle decided to start breeding hunter/ jumper horses at her Stella Rossa Farm in 2007, after spending her earlier years as an eventer. Her program produces about four foals per year that led her to embrace


By Liz Cornell


Perseverance, and a trip to Southern California, lands a Canadian breeder’s horse in the hands of one of Europe’s most prominent trainers.


the registry of the Oldenburg Verband. “I have been breed- ing all frozen semen from European stallions,” she says, “and I really like the Oldenburg breeders, their judging and their philosophy.” She has even traveled to Germany to take the breeding courses that GOV offers. After watching Edward and Totilas perform, she fell in


love with their partnership and in 2012 decided to switch her breeding focus to dressage. She went on a search for quality dressage broodmares with excellent pedigrees and soundness, and found the mare Day Star, a Canadian Warmblood by Donner Bube (Donnerhall) out of Lucy II, a Selle Français by Tango Selune I. Day Star was bred by Jane Jones of Alberta, who had sold her to a farm in Quebec, who then sold her to Estelle when the mare was seven. Day Star earned Premium status with the GOV.


Total Star at Stella Rossa Farm in Quebec. Warmbloods Today 13


Laurie Neron


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