Rolex World Cup Finals, Thomas and Mack Centre, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, April 2009. Rich Fellers (USA) riding Flexible: Photo Peter Llewellyn

At the age of 21, following an exceptional career under the saddle of Rich Fellers (USA), the Irish Sport Horse stallion Flexible/ex Flex A Bill (Cruising - Flex x Safari) will be retired from competition during the Del Mar National Horse Show in California on May 6. Bred in Ireland by Catherine Doyle, Flexible represented the USA at the London 2012 Olympic Games, finishing eighth individually, the highest-placed US pair, but it has been as a World Cup finaliist that he has excelled. Purchased by Mollie and Harry Chapman for Rich Fellers to ride, the pair made no fewer than seven appearances, starting in Las Vegas 2007. They peaked in the Netherlands in 2012 by becoming World Cup champions. With a history of overcoming career-threatening injuries, Flexible has enjoyed many victories in international showjumping arenas and his ‘flying’ style will surely be missed by showjumping fans everywhere.