If you’ve ever admired the striking black horses of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, now is your chance to own one. The Mounties breeding program, which has been around for over 80 years, is auctioning off 10 Hanoverians on the Government of Canada website, GCSurplus.
While it’s odd to us equestrians to refer to horses as “surplus” (like those army surplus stores that sell backpacks and camo and knives), it is a unique way to own one of the RCMP’s horses. As we’ve reported recently, the Queen’s favourite horse was Burmese, a horse bred in Saskatchewan by the RCMP. In other words, riding a Mountie’s mount is pretty special.
The auction runs from October 3-12 and on the official website you’ll find a range of ages on offer from yearlings right up to one 17-year-old gelding named Chief (who as of this writing had a top bid of $7,200). And Chief comes with some serious pedigree. The site describes him as a 17 h. Hanoverian gelding sired by Hohenstein, with Weltmeyer on the mare side. Those are bloodlines for dressage riders to drool over.
But that’s the least of Chief’s accomplishments. “After a long and illustrious career as a Musical Ride horse, having completed seven tours including appearances at Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee (2012) and Her Majesty’s 90th birthday celebration (2016), and having been an excellent mount for many riders over multiple tour years, Chief is no longer able to withstand the physical demands of being on tour with the musical ride,” the GCSurplus site says. “Having completed training for the musical ride, Chief has been trained up to second level movements, and has a very easy lead change. Chief also demonstrates such natural cadence and adjustability to his canter that he was an instinctively good jumping horse. His natural impulsion and energy made him an enjoyable ride whether it be over fences or on the flat. Chief is ready to return to work after an injury in the spring of 2022. A dignified, well-travelled and very impressive gelding Chief is ready to start this new chapter of his career.”
The current sale topper is Marina, a 16.1 h. 7-year-old Hanoverian mare sired by the elite Hanoverian stallion Sir Wannabi who has attracted a top bid of $12,100.
You can click on any of the horses’ names for details of their breeding, what level they are trained at, and why they didn’t make the cut for the Musical Ride. Of course, when you see some of the chestnut yearlings it’s easy to see why they up for auction; that solid black coat is a must for the Mounties.
Video of Chief and every other horse in the auction is available for viewing. The horses are all beautifully turned out and the videos show each put through their paces under saddle and free jumping.