Proving Ground: Mclain Ward's Clinta Steps Up to the Plate at WEG

Proving Ground: Mclain Ward's Clinta Steps Up to the Plate at WEG

When you think there can’t possibly be more, it seems as if Mclain Ward keeps pulling superstar mares out of his hat. There was Sapphire, then HH Azur, and now Clinta. With the looks of a unicorn and the scope and carefulness of an Olympic-caliber jumper, the 11-year-old Oldenburg mare (Clinton x Lord Pezi) is making a splash on the international jumping circuit - and she's about to go up against the big guns.

Photo by Andreas Pollak.

Mclain first spotted Clinta during CHIO Aachen in 2017. Following months of negotiations, Mclain acquired Clinta from owner Paul Schockemöhle. Now under his ownership along with Sagamore Farms, Mclain and Clinta have spent the past few months developing an unbreakable bond which can be seen in their impressive results.

Mclain Ward and Clinta at the Winter Equestrian Festival. Photo by Sportfot.

Bred by Silke Harms, Clinta made her Young Horse debut under Spain’s Manuel Fernandez Saro in the summer of 2013. The mare was then sold to billionaire and former Ukraine politician, Oleksandr Onyshchenko in 2015, a longtime supporter of the Ukrainian show jumping team. Following corruption allegations, Oleksandr sold most of his horses to Paul Schockemöhle, where Clinta was campaigned by Sweden’s Henrik Von Eckerman, then Germany’s Philip Rüping. It wasn’t until Mclain took over the reins where the mare showed her true potential.

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Despite their short time together, the horse-and-rider made their international debut this past March at the Winter Equestrian Festival. Since then, they’ve represented the United States in the Nations Cup at CHIO Rotterdam and picked up major wins across the world including wins in the Longines Grand Prix of New York at the Longines Masters of New York, winning the Prize of North Rhine-Westfalia at CHIO Aachen as well as winning the CSI5* Rolex Grand Prix of Dinard. Not too shabby for a new mount.

Mclain Ward and Clinta at CHIO Rotterdam. Photo by Jessica Pijlman.

Following the announcement of the United States Show Jumping team for the World Equestrian Games, Mclain was named to the roster with not one, but two horses in contention for the team: HH Azur and Clinta. As many assumed the fan-favorite and 2017 Longines FEI World Cup Jumping Final Champion, HH Azur, was the clear choice of mount for the Olympic gold medalist, a minor injury following Aachen has kept her out of the running, which means Clinta will soon get to show her stuff on a world stage of a whole new caliber.

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Now with Clinta on board, the question is, will she step up to the plate and deliver at WEG?

Feature photo by Andreas Pollak.