For this horse, ‘impressive’ is an understatement

Okay, I really need to get a DVR. I just came across the 2010 World Equestrian Games and had the privilege of watching Edward Gal and Moorlands Totilas win the Freestyle Dressage event. I’ve seen a fair amount of dressage, but not the freestyle event where the riders choreograph the required moves to their choice of music. I think you’d have to hate beauty in general and animals in particular not to appreciate the synergy of horse, rider, and music.

YouTube can’t touch the live performance, unfortunately. I’d love to have recorded it. Totilas is the most jaw-droppingly gorgeous horse I’ve seen in a long time — and I’m quite the fan of beautiful horses. I did a lot of riding as a kid and that love of horses is still strong.


Totilas, said to be the greatest dressage horse in history, won’t be captured adequately in still shots either, not when the performance is all about movement. Movement of the horse, that is. The rider’s cues to the horse are supposed to be undetectable.

It’s a cliché cop-out to say, “Oh well, you had to be there.” But for this, yeah, you did.

Totilas workin’ it
A champion’s work is never done


Here’s a much better recording of the same routine performed at a different show:


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