Ambassador Horses: A Legacy
While we love and appreciate all of our horses, there are always some that seem to attach themselves deeper into our hearts. Some are true "hooves on" ambassadors who have carried countless riders for their first joyful rounds of tölt; others have just been done everything go anywhere horses or are just characters with unforgettable horse personalities. The following horses are a few of those amazing horses that remind us why we fell in love with this breed in the first place.
Lettir fra Ey
1983 - 2005
[Note! See more photos in gallery below.]
It is hard not to smile when thinking of Lettir. Robyn met him in Iceland in 1989 when we were looking for a new Icelandic stallion. He needed to be easy with a natural tölt and most importantly an impeccable disposition. When she met Lettir he had been in a stall for a few months, recovering from a kick by a mare. The owner put a halter on him and jumped on bareback, tölting down the road on a six year old stallion who had been stalled and was undoubtedly feeling his oats. But he performed in what was later known by all in his typical laid back and cheerful manner. He was the horse that Robyn wanted and his bloodlines and evaluation scores checked out as well. He had been evaluated with very little training and was expected to do a lot better next time around. However his flight to Canada came before the evaluation and his score of 7.77 was good enough for us.
There was a moment of doubt as he arrived at the farm in Edmonton and was let into a pasture full of mares eagerly awaiting his arrival. He rolled, said hi and started eating. In the following weeks and months we never seen him breed any of the mares, but the following year all of them had foals by their side. In the 16 years Lettir was with us he produced over 150 foals in Canada and the US and we only saw him breed a few times. He liked his privacy.
Lettir’s offspring are consistently large, easy to deal with, show good gaits and a very smooth "Lettir canter". They have been trained by amateurs and Icelandic trainers alike and have received compliments for quality and tractability.
At home or at shows Lettir loved being the ambassador for the breed and how nice stallions can be. As soon as visitors came into the pasture to see him, his mares and foals, he would come over and show them around. One summer he was pastured at a farm nearby and had gotten out. We got the call that "Lettir was out" and raced to the location, only to find his tail covered in little braids, contently eating grass in the ditch with little girls swooning around him, making him pretty.
He was equally comfortable being pulled out of the pasture, away from his mare and taken to a show for a weekend as he was being ridden in groups of mares or sharing a stall with a gelding. His solid body made him a joy to ride and his nature was a treat to be around.
Lettir died unexpectedly and very suddenly in the summer of 2005, most likely while trotting from one mare to the other. His offspring are doing his genes proud and make him live in our hearts and minds for that much longer. It has been an honour being part of his life.