Thursday, Jun. 13, 2024

TRUE BLUE GIRDWOOD

True Blue Girdwood, Phillip Dutton’s 1996 gold medal Olympic partner, died peacefully on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 27, at home in his paddock in West Grove, Pa. He was 25.

True Blue Girdwood was born in Australia on Oct. 29, 1983. He was sired by Loosen Up out of Paramel. True Blue Girdwood, affectionately known as “Jug Head,” had a short racing career in Australia before he found his true calling in eventing. 

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True Blue Girdwood, Phillip Dutton’s 1996 gold medal Olympic partner, died peacefully on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 27, at home in his paddock in West Grove, Pa. He was 25.

True Blue Girdwood was born in Australia on Oct. 29, 1983. He was sired by Loosen Up out of Paramel. True Blue Girdwood, affectionately known as “Jug Head,” had a short racing career in Australia before he found his true calling in eventing. 

Dutton purchased Jug and imported him to the United States in 1991. They began their career in the United States at the Essex Three-Day Event (N.J.) and went on to compete successfully at major U.S. events including the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Jug also made a name for himself in Europe where he competed regularly, and in 1995 he placed sixth in the Badminton (England) CCI****. 

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In 1994, Jug made his debut on the Australian team at the World Equestrian Games in The Hague (the Netherlands).

In 1996 he was selected as a member of the Australian team for the Atlanta Olympics where he and Dutton won a team gold medal. Jug represented Australia again at the 1998 WEG in Patroni del Vivaro (Italy). Jug was also the leading advanced-level horse in the 1997 U.S. Eventing Association rankings.

After Jug’s retirement from upper level eventing he became a great schoolmaster for a number of up-and-coming riders. In addition to his riders, many people had a big influence on Jug’s life, including his veterinarians Kevin Keane and Denis Goulding, his groom, Colby Saddington, his coach, Wayne Roycroft, his farrier, Dave Kumpf and his co-owner, Annie Jones.

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