Death of a legend: Gem Twist euthanized at 27

20 11 2006

Gem Twist and Greg Best

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.

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4 responses

30 01 2007
Diana K. Dunlop

Dear Gem Twist, You gave me so much pleasure watching you jump. You seemed to enjoy what you were being asked to do by your rider, as if all you wanted the rider to do was make sure you took the jumps in the right sequence. Although I think with as much experience and talent as you had, you probably could have read the course graphic if someone had shown it to you, and then jumped the course perfectly, without a rider. I saw you “in person” at the Budweiser Invitational in Tampa. Run free, great, gray horse, forever in blue skies. Sincerely, Diana K. Dunlop. (

3 02 2007
Horse Lover

Poor Gem Twist. I hope you went peacefully and are now once again leaping over 5 foot fences.

21 09 2007
isabelle martin

Hello!
Would you be kind enough to tell me how to find a video of a course by CALVARO V and WILLI MELLIGER??
My son heard about it but never had the opportunity to see it.Neither did I.

thanks by advance!
Mme Isabelle Martin
14 rue du doignon
59530 FRASNOY
FRANCE
henry.godillon@wanadoo.fr

23 09 2007
isabelle martin

VIDEOS WILLI MELLIGER Franke Sloothaak GEM TWIST

Hello!
Would you be kind enough to tell me how to find a video of a course by CALVARO V and WILLI MELLIGER??
My son heard about it but never had the opportunity to see it.Neither did I.

And I had the opportunity to see the Franke Sloothaak’s record at Chaudfontaine in 1991 with Leonardo! Can you tell me how to find on internet some photos of him crossing the wall?Or even better,some videos?

Also of GEM TWIST???

thanks by advance!
Mme Isabelle Martin
14 rue du doignon
59530 FRASNOY
FRANCE
henry.godillon@wanadoo.fr

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