Hiroshi Hoketsu’s Hopes of Becoming Oldest Olympian at Age 75 End as Horse Ill

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Hiroshi Hoketsu of Japan the oldest competitor in London and riding in his third Olympics, two in dressage and his first as a jumper rider in Tokyo in 1964. © 2012 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com
Hiroshi Hoketsu of Japan the oldest competitor in London and riding in his third Olympics, two in dressage and his first as a jumper rider in Tokyo in 1964. © 2012 Ken Braddick/dressage-news.com

May 28, 2016

The hopes of Hiroshi Hoketsu to become the world’s oldest Olympian at the age 75 ended when Brioni W, the horse he was to ride in dressage for Japan became ill.

Wolfram Wittig who was working with Hiroshi on the 15-year-old Westfalen stallion (Breitling W x Diego xx) confirmed Saturday that Hiroshi had dropped efforts to win a start on the Japanese team at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in August. St. Georg magazine first reported the situation.

Wolfram told dressage-news.com that Hirohi, who bought Brioni at the end of 2015, made the decision when Brioni was coughing before competing at the CDI3* in Mannheim, Germany four weeks ago.

He supported Hiroshi’s decision for the sake of the horse. As the time for earning qualifying scores was short, he said, the Japanese rider decided to end the campaign. Hiroshi rides the horse daily.

Brioni had been competed at Big Tour for five years by Brigitte Wittig.

Hiroshi competed in in first Olympics in 1964, in jumping at Tokyo.

Forty-four years later he rode his Whisper in dressage at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 and then at the London Games in 2012. He rode Calambo on the Japanese team at the World Games in Aachen, Germany in 2006.

The oldest Olympian was Oscar Swahn at the age of 72 who was an a Swedish team that won silver in shooting at the Antwerp Games in 1920.