'Every Little Detail Is Seared Into My Memory': Show Jumping Legend Ian Millar Salutes a Storied Career

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t’s the end of an era. Ten-time Olympian Ian Millar has announced his retirement from international show jumping competition. Although it will be sad not to see “Captain Canada” donning his red jacket in venues around the world, the 72-year-old will continue to have his hand in the horse business as he will now focus on developing young horses and coaching up-and-coming riders at his home base, Millar Brooke Farm, in Perth, Canada.

Cementing his name in equestrian history, Ian’s storied career has spanned over five decades and is one for the record books — literally. The Olympic medalist holds the world record for competing in the most Olympic Games, ever, by any athlete in any sport. With numerous Nations Cups, World Championships, Pan American Games, and World Cup Finals appearances, Ian has done it all.

Ian representing Team Canada. Photo courtesy of Toronto Public Library.

But there is one major takeaway from Ian’s incredible career that every member of the equestrian community can apply — be in the moment.

“There’s not much that I regret about my career. But one thing that I do regret slightly is that I didn’t take a little more time to savor the important moments. In those few minutes [on course], it all happens fast, but it’s all in slow motion as well. Every little detail is seared into my memory … but it’s important to let the emotions sink in.”

Ian adding another win to the list. Photo courtesy of Millar Brooke Farm.

Hats off to you, Ian! We applaud and thank you for giving us such monumental moments in our sport.

Ian may be retired from international competition, but now he’s passing on the wealth of knowledge he’s garnered from his unparalleled career to you. Learn one on one from the legend himself in Ian’s first ever Masterclass and take your riding and horsemanship to a new level.

Read this next: 10 Things Ian Millar Has Learned From Competing in 10 Olympic Games

Feature photo by Sportfot.

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Written by Lizzy Youngling

Lizzy Youngling has been a die-hard equestrian groupie since the age of three. Although not in the saddle as much as she’d like, Lizzy is a fan of all things horses. When she’s not writing for NOËLLE FLOYD, she can be found at the boathouse training with the United States Rowing National Team in Princeton, NJ with the hopes of competing at the 2020 Olympic Games.