Beezie Madden (USA) and Simon (Photo: FEI)

Beezie and John Madden announced yesterday that KWPN ambassador Simon (Mr. Blue - Naline x Polydox) has passed away at the age of 22. Simon enjoyed a highly successful showjumping career, first under the saddle of Jeroen Dubbeldam (NED), and later with Beezie Madden (USA) – the latter partnership celebrating World Cup victory in 2013 in Gothenburg.

Simon was bred by M.J. Vermeulen, Alforst, and was discovered by Eric van Grunsven at the age of four. He passed into the hands of Dutch international Jeroen Dubbeldam in his ninth year and, thereafter, developed into a phenomenal international showjumper, posting clear rounds in virtually every class they entered. In 2010, they recorded a memorable double clear in the Spruce Meadows Nations' Cup – a feat only equalled by the legendary Hickstead and Eric Lamaze – followed by winning the prestigious CN International GP at the same venue.

Their success wasn't unnoticed, and in 2011 rumour became reality when just weeks before the end-of-year Olympic deadline he was sold to Abigail Wexner – the long-time sponsor of Beezie Madden. (Read the full story in the up-coming July issue of World Breeding News.)