Isabell Werth’s gold horse Satchmo is dead. According to the dressage rider from Rheinberg, the gelding, who won gold at European Championships, World Championships and the Olympics, died on Saturday at the age of 28. “Have a safe trip my great little fighter and thank you for everything,” Werth wrote on her website on Sunday.

With Satchmo, Werth had won the titles with the team and in the Grand Prix Special in 2006 at the home World Championships in Aachen in front of 40,000 spectators. At the Olympic Games two years later at the Hong Kong Equestrian Sports Center, Werth won the team classification with Satchmo and was on his way to gold in the individual competition when Satchmo suddenly climbed up during the test – and in the end only silver remained.

The not always easy gelding was one of the favorite horses of the most successful rider in the world. Werth associates special emotions with Satchmo. “And we’ve had more than enough of that – by any measure,” she wrote. An eye disease diagnosed late is suspected to be the cause of some dropouts in the arena.

When the horse died, Werth was not at their facility in Rheinberg. “The fact that I couldn’t be with you at this crucial moment weighs particularly heavily in my heart after twenty-five years together!” Werth continued.

She is currently preparing in the training camp for the World Championships in Herning, Denmark, where the team competition begins next Saturday. The nine-time world champion is part of the defending team.