USA’s Betsy Juliano Pays Highest Price for Dressage Horse at PSI Auction

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Riccidoff. Photo Courtesy of PSI
Riccidoff. Photo Courtesy of PSI

ANKUM, Germany, Dec. 12–Elizabeth “Betsy” Juliano on Sunday paid the highest price for a dressage horse–€680,000 (US$900,000)–at the Performance Sales International auction, for five-year-old Hanoverian stallion Riccidoff (Riccione x Don Davidoff x Sandro Hit) to be trained and competed by George Williams.

Betsy, who owns Havensafe Farm in Middlefield, Ohio, and Wellington, Florida, also paid €550,000 (US$727,000) for Horizon, an Oldenburg mare (Hotline x Don Schufro x Inschallah AA).

The annual PSI sale is the most famous riding horse auction in the world. The “buzz” surrounding PSI was more intense than ever this year when Paul Schockemöhle, who owns PSI with Ullrich Kasselmann, bought the superstar dressage stallion Totilas after the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky two months ago.

George Williams rode Rocher until the mare’s retirement then moved to Betsy’s Havensafe Farm as trainer and rider in May, 2009. He had coached the owner for several years.

The 31st annual PSI auction of 50 horses brought a total of €12.616 million (US$16.676), surpassing the previous year’s total of €10.44 million (US$13.8 million).

The top priced horse of the auction was a jumper, the six-year-old daughter of World Cup winner Baloubet du Rouet, bringing €800,000 (US$ 1.057 million).

At a gala banquet Saturday night, Great Britain’s Laura Bechtolsheimer who won three silver medals at the WEG in Kentucky, was presented with a  2010 PSI award. A Lifetime Achievement award went to Rosemarie Springer, now 90 years old, described as the Grand Dame of the Equestrian Sports who competed in dressage at the Olympic Games, World and European championships and was five times German champion.