Legendary show jumping stallion dies aged 33

  • Top show jumping stallion Tinka’s Boy has died at the age of 33 after a brilliant sporting and breeding career.

    Zuidpool’s son, out of Espirit (by Zeus), has won a staggering 2.5m Swiss Francs (£2m) and 26 major international prizes.

    The Olympic silver medalist enjoyed success under Nick Skelton, winning young horse championships and representing Great Britain in several Nations Cup teams in 1997, before being sold to join Markus Fuchs’ chain this that year.

    Nick recalled in his autobiography that Tinka’s Boy was “probably the best horse in the world in his day”.

    Tinka’s Boy jumped for Switzerland with Markus in every major senior championship squad between 1999 and 2004.

    The duo’s spectacular medal haul included individual and team silver at the 1999 European Championships in Hickstead, team silver at the Sydney 2000 Olympics, victory at the Gothenburg 2001 World Cup final and team bronze at the 2003 Europeans in Donaueschingen. Other senior championships in the partnership include the 2002 World Equestrian Games and the 2004 Olympics.

    His success as a sire means his legacy lives on through his offspring. These include Tinka’s Serenade, 25, who represented Ireland at the 2012 London Olympics along with Billy Twomey, Tinka’s Son and Tinka’s Lad.

    “We are all sad, including owner Isolde Liebherr. But we are also delighted that after a hugely successful 10-year sporting career, he was able to enjoy such a long, healthy retirement life,” Markus told Swiss publication Pferdewoche.ch.

    A statement from Béligneux Le Haras stallion station added: “Our beloved Tinka’s Boy has peacefully ended his long life. Our charismatic champion lived 33 years and gave so many emotions to those around him.

    “A big thank you to Markus Fuchs, Mrs Liebbher and Nadia and Clément who gave a beautiful life to this monument of equestrian sport. Tonight we cry.

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