A very special presentation was held at the 2012 Equine Canada Annual Awards Gala—the unveiling of the Equine Canada Horse of the Year award.
Equine artist Mary Sand was commissioned to created a bronze sculpture in the likeness of Hickstead in recognition of his significant contribution to equestrian sport in Canada. As part Hickstead’s legacy, this trophy will serve to recognize Canadian horses who have made an outstanding achievement in sport, and as such Equine Canada is honoured to present the inaugural Horse of the Year award to Hickstead.
John Taylor, the chair of Jump Canada, accepted the award on behalf of Eric Lamaze and Ashland Stables Inc. In addition to the unveiling, CBC Sports provided a very moving video tribute of Hickstead with a voiceover by Scott Russell, CBC sports broadcaster.
“It was an honour to introduce the inaugural Equine Canada Horses of the Year award, and a great pleasure to accept the award on behalf of Hickstead,” said the chair of Jump Canada, John Taylor. “Hickstead has become an icon in the equestrian world. He was our hero and we are thrilled to be able to honour him and his owners with this award. The beautiful bronze will be a reminder for years to come of how lucky we were to have known this great horse.”
Riding Hickstead, Lamaze won individual gold and team silver medals at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, individual bronze at the 2010 World Equestrian Games and team silver and individual bronze at the 2007 Pan American Games. Together, they won several major grand prix show jumping titles including Calgary (2007 and 2011), Geneva (2008), Aachen (2010), La Baule (2011) and Rome (2011). Tragically, Hickstead passed away on November 6, 2011.
Henceforth, the award will be called the Equine Canada Horse of the Year, the Hickstead Trophy. Now considered one of Equine Canada’s most prestigious awards, it will honour Hickstead’s legacy and serve to set the standard to which all future recipients should strive.