The Incredible Olivier

Liz Austin - Rider, Trainer, Breeder

Elisabeth Austin and Olivier
Elisabeth Austin and Olivier

"I can't believe Fizzy is going to be 15!" Austin exclaims to us when asked about her superstar Grand Prix partner and foundation sire of Austin's breeding program, Olivier the approved NA/KWPN Stallion by Idocus. The pair had a (mostly) fantastic year together, including an invitation to the World Dressage Masters where they placed 3rd in the Grand Prix Special), placing 2nd to Tina Konyot in the Palm Beach Derby CDI Grand Prix, and taking home two wins at the Allentown CDI. They also earned a spot at the USET National Championships, which was where the final selections were made for the World Equestrian Games. When asked about Gladstone and having to withdraw, Austin told us, "It was a bummer, for sure. But, that's the way it goes. I am so thankful for my time with this horse and we had a fantastic year. The hard parts make the great parts seem that much greater. It was such an honor to even be invited to Gladstone, and finishing so well on the first day told me we can hold our own even in the company of the best in the country!" (Editor’s Note: Olivier got a severe case of “Scratches” the week before the Trials and had to withdraw as a result).

Elisabeth Austin and Olivier photo: Betsy Nye
Elisabeth Austin and Olivier photo: Betsy Nye

Olivier is by Idocus and out of Madeleine Austin's foundation broodmare, Rowillie who was by the Holsteiner stallion Porter. Like all great horses who know they are stars, Olivier has his own uniqueness. "He has the most ridiculous personality and is always into something. He knows about a dozen tricks, and also has quite the vocabulary. Cookie, hungry, yummy... you get the trend. He absolutely understands that he gets rewarded for certain things and will nicker as he does them. For example, I was working him in hand one time, and when he decided his piaffe was good, he just started quietly nickering at me as if to say, 'Ok! This is good! Cookie!'

As a sire he has passed on his talent and traits to several offspring Austin has trained from young horses, giving her the added feel and abilities to do what she enjoys as a trainer, working and developing young horses for the future. As a pioneer in the new generation of younger American Dressage riders who have benefitted by the programs in place

Elisabeth Austin and Olivier photo: Betsy Nye
Elisabeth Austin and Olivier photo: Betsy Nye

For 2011, Austin tells us she is going to take it one show at a time. "We're working on a new Freestyle to use in the World Cup qualifiers. Beyond that, I'd love to take him back to Europe and do some shows. We've matured a lot in the last year. We're ready." This “readiness” was perhaps best proven in three back-to-back performances at Equine Affaire this past November. “5,000 screaming fans, a pitch-black arena, us in a spotlight, riding a Grand Prix Freestyle to Queen dressed up as rockstars? Check that one off the bucket list! Fizzy behaved like a true performer and it was at that moment I knew we could go in any arena.”

[#23808 override="Horses of the Future" title="Horses of the Future"]




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