Showjumping legend Nelson Pessoa has long had a passion for breeding horses, but now, at the age of 84, he is retiring from the game and will hold an auction next week.
Pessoa has been a discreet but successful breeder. Seizing opportunities when the mares he once rode or trained retired, he was able to cross them with stallions boarded in his stables or the stables of his students. Examples include Galoubet, Baloubet du Rouet, and Canturo. Some exceptional mares helped him breed horses that clearly left their mark in the studbooks, such as Quick Star.
The online “Pessoa Auction” on September 14 and 15 is the culmination of his breeding work and an opportunity for buyers to start their own breeding, expand their strings, or acquire a promising young horse or even a great performer ready to get out there and win.
Pessoa says he has never been interested in being a trader. Rather, he is a patient horseman who knows how to develop the career of his horses. His goal is to sell 50% of the headcount in order to secure the whole breeding, keep the horses in training for four years, bring them to their full potential, and eventually market them.
“During my career, I have always been interested in the breeding and genetics. I love all these horses, no exception. My desire is not to sell at all costs, but rather to sell to the right person. It would be a wonderful achievement if each of them found their match,” he said.
The sale has been mainly built around a founding mare who will also be included in the auction. This is Pandora, a daughter of Kannan. This lot will also include a recipient mare carrying an embryo by Untouchable.
Pandora’s eldest son, Ze Carioca, a nine-year-old approved stallion by Canturo, competed on the US circuit this spring in Wellington under the saddle of Rodrigo Pessoa. His younger brother, El London King, aged six and also an approved stallion, is a copy of his father, London, and has enjoyed a string of successes this summer. Cornetina, daughter of the sister of the two champions, Divine Sensation by Diamant de Sémilly, is a three-year-old filly who is also expected to generate a lot of interest.
Other offerings include stallion prospect Cornetino (Cornet Obolensky x Pandora); Tinkabell, a 15-year-old mare who will be sold with her foal by Ze Carioca; and Bella Baloubette, Eleonore, Ginseng, and Jigaro are mares and geldings from six to 11 years old and ready to compete.
The horses are all in Belgium, except for Ze Carioca who is in the USA.
Over 40 years of competing around the world, Nelson Pessoa had more than 200 victories and is considered a modern show jumping living legend. Since he retired from riding, he has been focusing on coaching other riders.