Edward Gal is delighted about the invitation from Ann-Kathrin Linsenhoff. No other dressage horse has made headlines like the stunning black Totilas, who in future will be ridden by the German dressage rider, Matthias Alexander Rath. Edward Gal, who among others won three World Championship titles and the Deutsche Bank Prize at the CHIO Aachen 2010 with Totilas, spoke with the "CHIO Aachen Magazine" for the first time after the sale of the horse. Mr. Gal announced that he intends to accept an invitation to visit Totilas at his new stables. He received the invitation from Ann-Kathrin Linsenhoff, the new co-owner of Totilas. "I think it is very nice," commented Mr. Gal, "because it would have been very difficult if my first encounter with Totilas again had been at a show somewhere."
He has had no direct contact with Matthias Alexander Rath yet, but he advised the German rider to be very sensitive and patient with the stallion: "When everything is going well, I hardly had to do anything at all, Totilas just did everything all by himself - an unbelievable feeling." But it was a long path before reaching that stage, "Matthias will have to have a lot of patience before he and Totilas become a team. And he must understand that coming second with Totilas will always be considered to be a defeat in the public's eyes."
So, Edward Gal advises Mr. Rath to take a laid back approach and to train hard, since it is always difficult to take over a Grand Prix horse from someone else, especially with the immense public pressure weighing down on the duo.
The sale of Totilas hit Edward Gal hard, "but when so much money is involved, of course I understand the decision. This is just part and parcel of our sport." Nevertheless, in a certain sense the sale also relieves the strain off Edward Gal: "I am no longer under the huge pressure of having to win. And everything is much quieter. As soon as we opened the lorry up at a show, we were surrounded by crowds of people. And I am not very good in the pop star role somehow."