For the past year, Katie Dinan and the Irish Sport Horse Dougie Douglas have been competing around the world all while getting to know each other. Their partnership began with a winter season win at WEF, and together they competed in Europe before returning stateside and most recently competing at the CP National Horse Show in Lexington, Kentucky. There, they racked up a top three finish in the $130,000 CP International Open Jumper Grand Prix CSI4*.
Dougie Douglas (ARD VDL Douglas x High Roller) is perhaps one of the most well-known Irish Sport Horses in the world. The 11-year-old gelding made headlines last year as the highest priced Irish Sport Horse ever sold at auction, at the Goresbridge Supreme Sale of Showjumpers in County Wexford, Ireland.
The liver chestnut gelding that jumps with a bravery inherent in horses bred in Ireland has been closely followed by Irish horsemen throughout his career. As Dougie prepares for a fall vacation after a busy season, Katie shares some insight into the gelding’s past, present, and future:
- Dougie was ridden by an English rider named Holly Gillot, she’s now Holly Smith since she got married this year. She purchased him as a four year old at the Goresbridge Sale in Ireland and campaigned him up until his 10 year old year. She really brought him to the ranks, I think the two of them really came up through the sport together
- When [Holly] decided to sell him last year, they put him back into the auction they had purchased him in. We had seen him competing in Europe two years prior to that and I’ve always liked the horse and had been interested.
- When we saw that he was going into the auction we decided to look into it. It ended up working out and I am so happy because he’s done just wonderful this year.
- [Dougie] is a very Irish horse. You can tell that he has vast experience being ridden outside.
- He’s so brave, nothing ever really worries him, and he gives his rider a lot of confidence. He has a super attitude, tries really hard, and he loves doing what he does. He always goes into the ring wanting to do his best.
- It was super exciting for us to jump in the Nations Cup at Hickstead this year especially because his favorite thing is to be in a big, grass field. I think that really plays to his advantage when you have a big field, natural obstacles; he feels really at home in that kind of arena.
- Kentucky was my last show with him for this year. He’s going to have a well-deserved little holiday now and then gear up for Florida.
- My aim for him would be to enter some big grand prix classes next year and hopefully go to some nice grass venues over the summer.
- I hope to be competitive at WEF 2017 and take it from there. I would say we’re going to gear him up for some bigger classes and hope for the best!