Beloved Rym and Ila
beloved vaulting horse and friend of many, was humanely euthanized
on Friday, April 4th at the University of California at Davis.
Although he has passed in body from our presence, his spirit will
remain in the hearts of those who knew him and enjoyed competing
on such a fine vaulting horse.
extensive unsuccessful treatments and procedures attempting to
correct and ease Rym's physical problems, veterinarians determined
that nothing could be done to avert those problems. With his groom,
Zenon Quintana, beside him, Rym passed on.
led a full life from his birth in Poland in 1981 until his passing
in Davis, CA recently. During his 22 years, this Polish thoroughbred
was able to travel all over the world and was at one point a citizen
of both Poland and Germany, and later of the United States. He
is fondly remembered by all those who vaulted on him, including
Jeannette Boxall, a former world champion vaulter, and Mari Inoye,
a recent vaulting champion.
remembers a story that describes Rym's personality and love for
children. In Germany in 1990, Rym was loose in an arena with children
who were playing soccer. He watched them and walked among them
until he too had the opportunity to nose and kick the ball. It
turns out that Rym was good at two sports in his lifetime.
began his career as a vaulting horse under the care of Dr. Andrzej
Salacki, a champion Polish dressage rider and experienced longeur.
In 1987 and 1988, he was leased by the late Ilse Lorenz (affectionately
known as "Ila") for Jeannette's use in international
competitions. In 1988 alone, Rym carried Jeannette along with
other vaulters in four CVI competitions in Budapest, Hungary;
Bern, Switzerland; Jozefin, Poland; and Ebriechsdorf, Austria.
While Jeannette competed on Rym under the flag of the United States
prior to 1990, she then went on to compete with Rym under the
flag of Poland from 1990 to 1992, with "Ila," as Jeannette
says, "always there to make everything work and encouraging
me and other international vaulters, including giving each of
us surprise Easter baskets during the Easter holiday." Clearly,
it was Ilse Lorenz who supported the dual citizenship held by
both Rym and Jeannette, and who helped Jeannette become an exemplary
1989, Rym was purchased by Ilse Lorenz, residing in her stables
in Germany and traveling to compete in CVI** Budapest, Hungary;
CVI** Mannheim, Germany; and CVI** Saumur, France.
1990, Rym carried Jeannette to additional titles in CVI competitions
in Hungary, Slovakia, Germany, and France. He experienced his
first World Equestrian Games in Stockholm, Sweden, carrying Jeannette
to a 7th place finish.
his adventures throughout Europe, Rym traveled across the Atlantic
to Canada, where he competed in CVI** Cloverdale. He got his first
glimpse of his future home in 1992 when he came to San Francisco,
CA to compete in CVI San Francisco.
1996, Rym was transferred in ownership to Mrs. Phoebe H. Cooke
and was stabled at the Cookes' horse ranch in Paso Robles, CA.
There he was inseparable from his long time friend and travel
companion Cosmo, another Polish horse trained by Dr. Salacki,
who was a close friend of Ilse Lorenz.
took part in numerous demonstrations all over the United States
and Europe while also competing in CVI competitions. He became
one of the most experienced and beloved vaulting horses in the
world and was renowned for his smooth, uninterrupted canter and
patience with vaulters. "He was one of the smoothest horses
I have ever been on and didn't have a mean bone in his body,"
said Jeannette. One of Rym's long-time longers, Natalie Kapsoff,
offered similar sentiments: "When I think of Rym I think
of heart. The red horse always gave everything he had in compulsories
as well as in practice.
During the compulsories, his last canter stride was as perfect
as his first. I was always proud to longe my old friend."
carried many Sundance Vaulters while he resided in California,
including Mari Inoye, the 2001 Woman's National Champion Vaulter.
Mari remembers Rym as "one of the best horses we had"
and says she "enjoyed every opportunity to vault on him.
He was a wonderful horse and could always be relied on by every
member of the Sundance Vaulters team. Thank you, Rym!"
will vault in his memory and that of his late owner, Ilse Lorenz,
in Nitra, Slovakia on April 26th and 27th. This competition will
be dedicated to the memory of Ilse and Rym and their many contributions
to the sport of vaulting. Mrs. Cooke said that "Ila and Rym
were a lot alike in that they were both givers and not takers."
only did Rym contribute to the sport of vaulting during his lifetime,
but he also contributed to a special scientific project led by
AXYS Analytical Services, Ltd. of British Columbia, Canada. AXYS
is working on an environmental project that involves analyses
of human and horse blood as well as environmental samples collected
from water, soil, and air. The focus is to see if a connection
can be established between contaminants found in the environment
and unexplained health problems in people and horses.
Berger-North, AXYS project leader, states, "I would like
to take this opportunity to thank Rym in particular, who has made
the ultimate contribution possible in the name of science and
the betterment of our understanding of our environment. May his
contribution be a keystone to the solid foundation of a project
that will have benefits far into the future and beyond the scope
of our current understanding."
AXYS project is national in scope, with study sites in California
and Colorado as well as at the U.S. Equestrian Team's headquarters
in Gladstone, NJ. USET's Frank Lloyd, Chairman of the Board, commented,
"The USET is honored to be invited to participate in this
pioneering study. We hope the results will prove helpful in understanding
and improving the environment within which our athletes, both
human and equine, compete and train."
>From vaulting competitions and demonstrations around the globe
to his important role in the AXYS testing project to benefit human
and equine health, Rym was truly a remarkable horse. William Howe,
AXYS project participant, has even suggested that "with his
astounding winning record worldwide and his positive influence
on people and other horses everywhere, Rym ranks alongside Alexander's
Bucephalus, Washington's Nelson, Lee's Traveller, and other great
horses of history."
be sure, it was horses like Rym and dedicated horse lovers like
Ilse Lorenz that brought the sport of vaulting into the limelight
in Europe, Eastern Europe, and the United States. As Jeannette
has said, "Both were champions as much as I was, and both
lived to ensure that vaulting became an increasingly recognized
and international sport." We bid them both a loving farewell.