Famed American showjumper Gem Twist was euthanized November 18 at the age of 27. Godspeed, old man:
It is a loss that will make anyone who ever saw him jump reflect on the privilege of having watched him. The high-flying grey gelding, who was 27, captured the imagination of thousands with his dramatic style and bold personality. His death brings down the curtain on an era of stellar jumping, when another of the “great greys,” Milton, ridden by John Whitaker of Great Britain, and Canada’s Big Ben, with Ian Millar up, contested the greatest prizes with Gem and his young rider, Greg Best.
Gem’s sire was Good Twist, the mount of Frank Chapot in the days when he was captain of the U.S. Equestrian Team. Good Twist was quick on course, but small. Gem inherited his sire’s speed, combining it with size and scope that made him capable of jumping anything a course designer could build.
Gem, bred at the Chapot family’s Chado Farm in Neshanic Station, N.J., where he died on Saturday, was sold to Michael Golden, a resident of a nearby town. But Gem was no mount for an amateur, so the horse was sent back to Frank in order to nurture the young talent. Michael was the ideal owner who listened to the trainer. Although he was not on Gem’s back, Michael nevertheless enjoyed an exciting ride around the world for years as Gem became an international star of the highest magnitude.
Read the rest at EquiSearch.