In Memoriam - Parsifal

Wednesday, November 14, 2018
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Beloved US Grand Prix horse Parsifal sadly passed away at 22, having been retired from competition 2 years ago. Trained and ridden by American grand prix rider Elizabeth Armstrong Powers, he was imported from Denmark at 9 years old. She remembers when she first saw him, what a dazzling presence he had with amazing talent and expression.

They had a long run together, starting at Small Tour and then went on to perform many Grand Prixs, including freestyles to new age music by David Arkenstone. About 3 years into his promising Grand Prix career, at 14, he developed a bone cyst in his stifle with a very slim chance of recovery. After an 18 month rehab, he remarkably did recover and was back in the Grand Prix ring until he was 20 years old.

Parsifal was bred by Agner Jensen. His sire was Limelight x Ladykiller and was out of Plaisir x May Sherif. He displayed many of the characteristics of his famous grandsires and the great son of May Sherif, Matador II, ridden by Kyra Krykland. It was quite wonderful to have insights about his training from both Kyra and Klaus Balkenhol along the way.

“I have had many wonderful horses but he was the one who captured my heart and my imagination of what we could do together. I never thought there could be so many adjectives to describe a horse. He was very beautiful. In our stable, he was Mr McDreamy. He was eagle eyed and lionhearted. Together, we achieved our Grand Prix dreams. He was emotional, complicated yet brilliant. He was super quirky. He had a club foot, a slightly high croup and two different front legs. However, he possessed such fire and power, that he overcame these flaws. He had a passage to die for. Every day he put great passion into his work like an inspired genius. He always fought for me in that arena like a proud and brave warrior. Every single day,I so looked forward to our work or just to have a gallop in the forest.”

“We always aimed high. It was not a straight line but we accomplished everything we set out to do. Parsifal, who was a knight of the Holy Grail, was the perfect name for him. An inspired quest for something huge. We shared an incredible, rewarding and loving adventure together. A true passion project. We persevered and never gave up. I am so grateful to Parsifal, and to all who joined us along the way. We will miss him so much.”   

Elizabeth currently has for the future two Grand Prix horses ,Cardeur, and the upcoming mare  Donamira, by Don Primero. found at Helgstrand Dressage.