Jan Ebeling has been a busy, busy man. In between training his Olympic mount Rafalca for her upcoming European tour, he found time to do a little horse shopping while in Germany and acquired Rassolini, a new Grand Prix horse.
Ebeling and his team of sponsors have been looking for a new horse as a potential mount for future international championships. He was attracted to the 10-year-old Hanoverian stallion (Rubioso N—Sweetheart, Silvano) because of his fantastic basic gaits and the training he’s received from German rider Kathrin Meyer zu Strohen.
Strohen and Rassolini earned the championship at the 2010 Nürnberger Burgpokal (Germany). The dark chestnut began showing Grand Prix in mid-2012. Ebeling knew Rassolini was special when he first went to try the horse and saw Strohen’s 12-year-old daughter taking a spin around the arena for her birthday. “I love his temperament—not many breeding stallions can do that!” he said.
Rassolini was purchased for Ebeling in part by the “three amigos”—Beth Meyer, Ann Romney and Amy Ebeling, who own Rafalca. The group brought an additional seven investors on board to comprise the 10-person alliance that will support Rassolini and Ebeling’s future competitive endeavors.
For now, the stallion will remain in Europe where Ebeling will begin building their relationship while he is stationed there to compete his other horses. Everyone will return to his Moorpark, Calif., home base later this summer.
Ebeling is setting his sights high for Rassolini: “There are many things coming up with [the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (France), the World Cup, and in a couple years Rio [de Janeiro, the location of the 2016 Olympic Games]. We have big hopes, the greatest hopes for him,” he said. “We are hoping with this new partnership that U.S. dressage will be able to really be visible globally again. I’m excited that we were able to secure a horse like that for the U.S.”
But Ebeling won’t be retiring the 16-year-old Rafalca anytime soon. “She’s very fresh and is really in good spirits and sound and very fit,” he said. “We took a long break after the Olympics to give her a mental break, and it was a good thing for her.”