FRANCE (by Adriana van Tilburg) Baloubet du Rouet has been one of the best showjumping horses in history, carving out a career lasting more than a decade in international arenas around the world. An unprecedented ‘triple’ of World Cup wins in successive years with Rodrigo Pessoa – Helsinki (1998), Gothenburg (1999) and Las Vegas (2000) – followed by individual gold at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games. Since retiring to stud, his reputation as a suc- cessful and popular sire has been similarly meritorious.
To date, his breeding career has produced many winners, such as Bella Baloubet (out of Kapitola x Landadel, stamm 173, bred by Manfred von Allwöhrden), 1m60m with Amy Graham; Bubalu VDL (out of Zancara x Nim- merdor, stamm 474A, bred by VDL Stud); Palloubet d’Halong (out of Indra Love x Muguet du Manoir, bred by Jean Nguyen) 1m60m with Bassem Hassan Mohammed; Chaman (out of Jadied x I Love You, bred by Agriculture BV BOA); and Querly- bet Hero (out of Narcotique II x Darco, bred by Joris de Brabander) 1m60 with Philippe Le Jeune.
On August 7 this year, Balou- bet du Rouet (Galoubet A - Mesange du Rouet x Starter), passed away quietly at the age of 28. So, what made him so special?
The Fardin family started to breed with this motherline following the Second World War when they purchased the mare Perle de Nor val (Rantzau xx - Hautesse x Bouton d’Or, bred by Roger Chaignon). Louis Fardin subsequently brought this mare to the local French Na- tional Stud to use their stallions and, in 1967, she gave birth to Badine (Bel Avenir), and in 1978 to Milady du Rouet (Quastor). (I total, Perle’s broodmare career produced 12 foals from 1966 to 1979.)
Yannick Fardin, the grandson of Louis Fardin, recalls: “My grandfather used Starter (Rantzau xx) for Badine, this was an inbreeding to Rantzau xx (Foxlight xx - Rancune xx x Cavaliere d’Arpino xx, bred by Henri Tambareau). He did this on purpose to make the qualities of Rantzau xx stronger. Rantzau xx was known for giving blood, bravery and courage. This inbreeding would become Mesange du Rouet, born in 1978...