New Reports Helen Langehanenberg May Lose Ride on Damon Hill, 2nd in World for 15th Straight Month

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Helen Langehanenberg on Damon Hill NRW at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Helen Langehanenberg on Damon Hill NRW at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy. © 2014 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

Oct. 7, 2014

By KENNETH J. BRADDICK

Helen Langehanenberg was reported Tuesday to have not yet reached agreement to continue riding Damon Hill NRW, the stallion on which she has become Germany’s top combination and No. 2 in the world for the past 15 months.

Westline, a media operation based in Dortmund, Germany reported the status of negotiations with Christian Becks, the owner of the 14-year-old Westfalen stallion.

The report came the same day as the latest International Equestrian Federation (FEI) rankings that placed Helen and Damon Hill second in the world to Great Britain’s Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro.

It also came a week before the start of the 2014/15 Western European League World Cup series. Helen and Damon Hill were World Cup champions in 2013 as well as team gold medal winner at the World Equestrian Games in Normandy in August, 2012 Olympic team silver medalist and winner of team gold at the 2013 European Championships.

The status of Damon Hill has been the subject of unconfirmed news reports since before the World Games. Helen told dressage-news.com at the time she was aware of the reports but did know of any consideration to sell the horse.

Westline quoted Andreas Kleefisch, the lawyer for Christian Becks, as saying that a decision on the future of Damon Hill was expected by the end of October.

“Of course there are always buyers for horses of this quality at home and abroad,” the attorney was quoted.

Damon Hill was ridden by Ingred Klimke to the six-year-old world championship in 2006 and then trained through to Grand Prix in 2009. Helen took over competing the horse in 2010 and in 62 starts since then has finished in the top three 49 times.

The latest FEI world rankings at the end of September showed only minor changes in the top 50 combinations compared with the the previous month.