According to the Saudi Equestrian Team's tweet today, the team has 2 new show jumpers: Al Capone & Sultan. Anyone know who these horses came from? I know the Saudis also recently bought some horses that were British team prospects but I didn't know the origins of these 2.
10 year old British horse Sultan (Irco Mena x Voltaire) changed ownership right before the new year. The last five years Bruce Menzies has been riding the gelding; they had great success together and took part of several Nations Cups in 2011. Bruce was hoping to compete Sultan at the Olympics in London.
Spanish rider Antonio Mariñas has sold his ride Al Capone to Saudi Equestrian. Ramzy Al Duhami is supposedly the new rider of the 11 year old gelding that was on the Spanish team at the Europeans. Al Capone won the Grand Prix in Vimeiro in July, was third in the Grand Prix in Salzburg in December, as well as being on the second placed Spanish team in the Promotional League final in Barcelona. The ownership change came just ahead of the Olympic deadline 31.12.2011.
Found this at the superb website World of showjumping, if you want to keep up with the events, mark this as a favourite :
The Brits lost two horses to Saudi Arabia, Robert Smith's Talan was also sold to the Saudis just before the year end deadline, with the intention of competing him in the 2012 Olympics. The Brits lost a third showjumper, Guy Williams' Titus, when it was sold to Australian Edwina Alexander.
It will be interesting to see how Talan goes with his new rider. Obviously the horse has all the ability, but I do not think it is an easy ride. He was ridden superbly by a very experienced rider. I wonder how it will go with a lesser rider.