Three-star Canadian eventing horse Conahy’s Courage has died following injuries sustained in a rotational fall at the Red Hills International Horse Trials in Tallahassee, Florida, at the weekend.
Ridden by Kyle Carter, the 10-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding owned by Imogen De Lavis was humanely euthanised after suffering a catastrophic injury at fence 12a in the CIC3* division at Red Hills on Saturday.
Carter had ridden Conahy’s Courage for the past four years. He had been bringing the horse up through the levels, and began competing at the CIC2* level in 2013, before moving up to CIC3* in 2014. His dream was to qualify and compete with the “small but mighty” horse at the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Courage was bred in Ireland by Harry Fitzpatrick and sired by Courage II, and from Ballyragget Princess. He was a half-brother to the showjumper Conahy Clover.
“Courage fit the dream well; he had the most powerful jump, wonderful movement and was not put off by any jump,” Carter said. “A more applicable name than Courage could not have been found. I have ridden many horses, and he was in a league of his own when it came to boldness.”
Carter also paid tribute to Conahy’s Courage’s temperament.
“All the talent in the world couldn’t match his best quality, which was how kind and sweet he was,” Carter said. “He was a favourite in the barn and great with my kids – a joy to be around on the ground and a devil if you got on his bad side while riding him. I just wish we could have reached his potential, but more than that, I wish we had more time together.”
Red Hills spokesman Tom Barron said a post-mortem examination would be conducted at the University of Florida Large Animal Hospital in Gainesville.
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