Not since Ian Millar and Big Ben conquered the show jumping world has their been another internationally as well known a Canadian pair – until Eric Lamaze and Hickstead climbed on the podium. They won every major tournament on two continents as well as Olympic gold – Canada’s ONLY EVER gold medal.
Poking around on Facebook a little while ago I read the first, of what rapidly became hundreds if not thousands by now, comment that the beloved Hickstead had collapsed following a 4-fault jumping round and died. Skeptical at first I sought confirmation; but it was everywhere on every equine-related site. Faster than a speeding bullet the news flew around the globe including descriptions of his collapse, the bewilderment seen on Eric’s face, the arrival of the horse ambulance and, finally, the cancelling of the competition at the request of the riders in sympathy for Eric and Hickstead’s owners and out of respect for the loss of a 21st century hero.