We are sad to report that Leslie Law’s 2004 individual Olympic gold medal partner Shear L’eau passed away yesterday at the age of 26.
The 1991 Irish Sport Horse (Stan the Man x Starry Night II) was bred by Edward Walsh in Ireland. He was the full brother to Shear H2O, who Leslie rode to team silver in the Sydney Olympic Games in 2000.
Though he is remembered best for his result in Athens, “Stan” had a storied career. He stepped on the scene at the Advanced level in 1999 before finishing 11th at the young horse championships at Le Lion d’Angers later that year as an 8-year-old.
Stan had five starts at four-star level, three of which resulted in top ten finishes at Burghley and Kentucky. Before their gold medal, Stan and Leslie also earned fourth individually and team gold for Great Britain at the Punchestown European Championships in 2003 as the only pair to make the time cross country.
Stan in retirement. Photo by Keith Cotton.
When Leslie relocated to the United States in 2005, Stan was the only horse he brought along, and was then retired two years later. He enjoyed the next decade at Leslie’s base in Ocala, Florida.
“He lived out a good number of retirement years in a massive grassy paddock in Florida with two best buddies and we only wish he could of had ten more years out there,” Leslie shared to his Facebook page.
“He was a true horse of a life time. He was Shear L’eau to most but always Stan to us. A personality as tall as he was we could write a book of Stan stories but right now we will just miss him and remember how lucky we all were to have known him.”
The EN team sends our condolences to all who knew Stan.