Hickstead Horse Death At Competition In Verona, Italy

Hickstead Horse Death

After collapsing and dying in front of hundreds of onlookers in Italy on Sunday, Canada’s top Olympic athlete, a stallion named Hickstead, was euthanized. After an almost perfect round of show jumping at the Grand Prix level, the horse fell and died in the ring as spectators gasped in horror. After Hickstead’s legs appeared to give out as he walked unsteadily between two brightly colored jumps in the arena in Verona, the horse’s longtime rider, Eric Lamaze, appeared to be unharmed. Lamaze won an individual gold and silver medal for the Canadian team with Hickstead at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.

According to data posted on the website of the sport’s international governing body, the Federation Equestre Internationale, the duo had just finished a 13-jump course as part of the fourth leg of the Rolex F.E.I. World Cup, with only one rail down. The Dutch Warmblood horse Hickstead was helped out of the arena. Attempts to contact Lamaze and John Fleischacker, whose family shares ownership of the horse,  were unsuccessful.

Tonya Henning, 26, a Canadian grand Prix rider and owner of Mill Creek Stables in Cambridge, Ontario, who also trained under Lamaze, noted that Hickstead “understood what it took to compete.” She noted that the bay stallion’s lively and focused attitude in the ring made him stand out. Henning claimed that the man desired the opportunity as much as the rider did.

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The Rolex rankings placed Lamaze, 43, ahead of Sweden’s Rolf-Goran Bengtsson and the United States Olympic show jumping champion, Mclain Ward, for the third time in his career at the beginning of last summer. The remarkable Hickstead, regarded by many as the best equestrian horse in the world, elevated Lamaze’s career to new heights despite the Frenchman’s significant abilities. “That horse is crucial to Eric’s success,” Henning added. That pair of horse and rider is invincible.

The tragic death of Hickstead, in which the horse lay writhing on its back with its hooves trembling in the air for several minutes, was seen not only by those at the stadium but also by viewers watching the event on television and the F.E.I. website. The disturbing video clip spread like wildfire on the Internet. An autopsy will determine the cause of death. However, the head of Rutgers University’s Equine Science Center, Karyn Malinowski, claimed that the horse’s sudden collapse was consistent with a large coronary.

‘The horse is a natural blood doper,’ Malinowski remarked. The horse will release a large number of red blood cells into the bloodstream whenever it performs a strenuous physical activity, she explained. Why the horse is such a great athlete. A thicker layer of blood results from an increase, which means the horse’s heart may have potentially ruptured if it was already weak.

A weak heart can be caused by several circumstances, such as heredity or the use of breathing aid medicines. Sunday’s last rounds of the World Cup jumping competition were postponed at the contestants’ request. Princess Haya bint al-Hussein of Jordan, head of the federation, released a statement calling the death a “sad loss.”

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