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That Special Bond – with Josie Eliasson: "Everyone that ever met Zecilie, fell in love with her"

Monday, 01 August 2022
That Special Bond

Photo © MacKenzie Clark "I think I have never before met a horse like her, she is the kindest animal in the world and has the biggest heart," Josie tells about Jessica Springsteen's RMF Zecilie. Photo © MacKenzie Clark.

 

Text © World of Showjumping

 


 

In World of Showjumping’s series ‘That Special Bond’, we talk with some of the top names in the sport, to discuss the horses that have shaped their careers, fulfilled their dreams – and sometimes even broken hearts. This time, Josie Eliasson, who for the past six years has worked with Jessica Springsteen, tells WoSJ about the very special horses she has taken care of – including four Olympians.

The special one

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ "Everyone that ever met her, fell in love with her," Josie tells about RMF Zecilie. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.

“This would have to be RMF Zecilie (Acolord x Canturo),” Josie smiles. “Jessica rides her, but she is owned by Rushy Marsh Farm. I think I have never before met a horse like her, she is the kindest animal in the world and has the biggest heart. She is the horse that actually made Jessica’s career: She had the first big win on her in 2019, when they won the Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of St. Tropez, and thanks to Zecilie, Jessica got opportunities to ride at all these big shows.”

In 2021, the pair topped the CSI5* Rolex Grand Prix at the Brussels Stephex Masters and the now 15-year-old mare is still going strong. “She recently finished 8th in the Rolex Grand Prix of Knokke, 10th in the Longines Global Champions Tour Grand Prix of Cannes, and has been named traveling reserve for the World Championship in Herning,” Josie tells. “What is fun with Zecilie, is that you can talk all you want about a special connection you have with your horse, but Zecilie… everyone that ever met her, fell in love with her! She just loves everyone; she loves to cuddle – she is very special.”

Hardest to get to know

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for WoSJ. “Hungry Heart has been challenging,” Josie tells about Jessica Springsteen's 10-year-old gelding. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.

“Hungry Heart (Baltimore 1178 x Loucaibo) has been challenging,” Josie tells about the 10-year-old gelding that joined Jessica’s string of horses four years ago.

“He is super sweet and funny in many ways, but also a bit difficult to handle,” Josie continues. “His mind just sets off sometimes and you never really know when; he has been hard to figure out. However, I think we are starting to get there. Jessica bought him from Peder Fredricson when he was six and he is now ten. I suggested to her to go and see some young horses at Grevlunda, because I thought they always have good ones. So, she went there to try and found this guy. He is very talented, but he has a lot of character and really has a mind of his own.”

The one that got away

Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson/WoSJ
"I just loved him – and I still do," Josie tells about Jessica Springsteen's former ride Romeo 88, here seen with Harry Charles at the Olympic Games in Tokyo. Photo © Jenny Abrahamsson for World of Showjumping.

“The one that got away is for sure Romeo 88 (Contact van de Heffinck x Orlando),” Josie tells. “Jessica bought him when he was seven, and had him for two years. It never really worked out well with her, because Romeo is more of a guy’s ride. This is one of the horses I did a lot with in the beginning of my time with Jessie and I completely fell in love with him. He was a stallion back then, he was naughty and everything, but I just loved him – and I still do. I had so much faith in Romeo, I always thought he would end up doing amazing things.”

Now, Romeo is hugely successful with Great Britain’s Harry Charles. “It was really fun to be at the Olympics in Tokyo with him – that was really cool,” Josie says. “In addition to Jessica’s Don Juan van de Donkhoeve (Bamako de Muze x Heartbreaker), there were three other horses in Tokyo that I at one point in my career had been taking care of; Romeo, Twentytwo Des Bisches (Mylord Carthago x Kalor du Bocage) and Vancouver de Lanlore (Toulon x Le Tot de Semilly).”

 

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