Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum unexpectedly withdrew show jumping superstar Shutterfly from the Rolex Grand Prix at the World Equestrian Festival CHIO in Aachen, Germany, on the morning of the class. A retirement ceremony was held for him during the Rolex Grand Prix in front of a crowd of 40,000 spectators.
Michaels-Beerbaum decided to retire the 18-year-old Hanoverian gelding (Silvio—Flam, Forrest xx) from international competition after winning the Warsteiner Prize on Wednesday, July 13. Michaels-Beerbaum, 41, presented “Petey,” with whom she has won countless Grand Prix classes, including the 2005 Grand Prix of Aachen, three World Cup Finals and an individual bronze medal at the 2006 FEI World Equestrian Games, under saddle at the Rolex Grand Prix.
“This is my thank you to Shutterfly,” the German team rider said. “He is the best horse in the world, and he simply deserves a farewell ceremony in front of the best crowd in the world.”
Michaels-Beerbaum and her husband Markus Beerbaum first welcomed Petey to their farm as a 7-year-old. He was named “Shutterfly” because his American owner, Nancy Clark, couldn’t pronounce his German name, “Struwelpeter.” She told the Chronicle in an interview earlier this year that she “would quite happily call him show jumping’s best ever.”