Influential dressage sire Sandro Hit dies at 28

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Leading dressage sire Sandro Hit has succumbed to an infection at the age of 28. His passing was announced on August 19 by Paul Schockemöhle.

Schockemöhle said that Sandro Hit’s condition deteriorated and veterinarians said there was no chance of improvement

“Sandro Hit was especially close to my heart. He was something very special and the real founder of my stallion station. We are very affected by his loss,” Schockemöhle said.

Bred by Reinhold Harder, Sandro Hit (Sandro Song x Loretta [Ramino-Welt As]) had lived his life at Mühlen after being auctioned as a foal in Vechta in 1993.

Under saddle, he won the World Championship for six-year-old dressage horses in 1999 at Arnhem in The Netherlands, ridden by Dr Ulf Möller, and then completed the double at the Bundeschampionat in Warendorf, Germany.

Demand for Sandro Hit as a breeding stallion was huge, and he passed on his type, charisma, movement and rideability to his offspring, Schockemöhle said.

From 2012 Sandro Hit was one of the world’s best dressage sires, and in 2017 and 2018 he ranked second in the World Breeding Federation of Sport Horses (WBFSH) rankings of dressage stallions. He has been ranked third since 2019. Eight of his progeny competed in the dressage at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, with Showtime FRH winning team gold for Germany with Dorothee Schneider. The US team that won the silver medal was full of Sandro Hit blood, including his son Salvino, ridden by Adrienne Lyle, his grandson Sanceo (by San Remo) ridden by Sabine Schut-Kery, and great-grandson Suppenkasper (by Spielberg, by Sunny-Boy) ridden by Steffen Peters.

Nearly 500 of his daughters have been awarded State Premium status, led by the dressage World Champion and double German Champion Poetin, who was auctioned for the record sum of €2.5 million.

Sandro Hit is the sire of more than 200 stallion sons, including Sir Donnerhall I and San Amour at the Schockemöhle stallion station. “I’m very happy to have quality sons of Sandro Hit who will secure his wonderful genes. It’s a very difficult farewell,” Schockemöhle.

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