Has Phillip Dutton gone off the OTTB deep end? Maybe so — and that’s alright with us!
This week he’s making a splash with Water Cube (Rockport Harbor – Internal Affair, by Orientate), a grey 2012 gelding that raced eight times under trainer Graham Motion before his owners Michael Phelps and Bob Bowman decided that it was time for a career change.
And yes, that’s Michael Phelps as in the 18-time Olympic gold medalist swimmer, who has been dabbling in the ponies for the last few years. In fact Water Cube is named after the Beijing Olympic aquatic venue where Phelps pulled a record eight gold medals for Team USA in 2008. Bob Bowman was his swimming coach and will be serving as head coach for the U.S. Olympic Swimming Team in Rio de Janeiro later this summer.
NBCOlympics.com got hold of the Olympian-to-Olympian horse handoff storyline yesterday. While the writer gets a wee bit excited about the horse’s potential (“Water Cube, who is 4 years old, is too young to be eligible for Rio, but could be ready by the 2020 Tokyo Games”) — come on, guys, he only just jumped his first crossrail! — he does seem like a promising young guy.
Water Cube going from one Olympian to another @coach_bowman @m_phelps00 @duttoneventing @eviedutton5 A photo posted by Anita Motion (@anitamotion) on
In the video Phillip remarks, “I think he’s going to be good. He’s got an incredible attitude, very willing and he wants to work. At the moment he’s still racehorse tight and stiff so it’s a little hard for me to loosen him up and get him to use himself and stay round. But he put in a couple nice jumps and he was very brave and prepared to try something a little out of the ordinary like going up that bank, so I was really impressed.”
In addition to footage of Water Cube, there are new schooling session videos of OTTBs Sea of Clouds, Quadrivium, Commanding Curve and Icabad Crane on the Herringswell Stables YouTube channel if you want to check in on their progress as well!
Go OTTBs. Go Eventing.
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