What price for two golden equine stars? try £20million
OLYMPIC champion wonder horses Valegro and Uthopia are set to be sold after their London 2012 heroics – for an eye-watering £20 million.
The pair, who struck gold with Gloucestershire dressage stars Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin at last month's Olympics, are set to rake in a record fee, with a mystery royal from the Middle East thought to be first in the queue.
The star duo have been based at Hester's Oaklebrook Mill stable near Newent since being foaled and both riders have spoken of their heartbreak at their sale.
Hester part-owns both horses but with record money on the table after their Olympic exploits the money was too good to turn down.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, June 30 2013
Dujardin, who rode Valegro to gold in both the team and individual grand prix dressage events said the sale of her trusty steed was "heart-wrenching."
She said: "That horse has given me amazing opportunities. I will never be able to thank him enough for what he has done for me.
"It is very sad because he has become my best friend. It was a really strong partnership I had with him.
"But as tough as it is going to be — and it is heart-wrenching — it's something I knew was going to happen.
"He is not my horse and they had already kept him for me to ride. It's what makes the world go round. He is a very special horse and is going to be very, very hard to replace."
Hester said that the sale of the pair had completed a whirlwind couple of months, especially given his close role in the development of the duo.
He said: "This is the hardest year of my life. I've had the horses since they were babies. I'm emotional they have to be sold.
"But I'd rather dwell on the fact that the people who own these horses decided to keep them for the Olympics."
The pair will now focus their efforts on training and developing the next group of stars at Oaklebrook Mill in readiness for the Rio Olympics in 2016.
Dujardin, who will still only be 31 when Rio rolls around is working hard with an eight-year-old called Don Archie.
And despite her new steed currently competing two levels below Grand Prix standard, Dujardin is looking forward to the challenge of developing the horse.
The word dressage comes from the french word for training and Dujardin said it was that training and development process that made the sport so 'magical'.
She said. "I love it. I just love training them and getting them up to the top level.
"It's such an achievement to be able to do that. I start with a horse that knows nothing, but by the end what you can teach them is unbelievable. It is quite magical."