Best of HN: Horse Nation’s Most Read of 2016

As we start 2017 as a fresh canvas, it never hurts to look back at the previous year — here are the top three most-read pieces from our sister site Horse Nation.

3. Isabel Werth’s David Bowie Freestyle

2016 certainly seemed to take way more than its fair share of celebrities, didn’t it? In January, David Bowie passed away, and we shared Isabel Werth’s goosebump-raising David Bowie freestyle dressage test.

“In honor of wherever you’re headed next, Mr. Bowie, we’d like to take the liberty of dedicating Isabell Werth’s killer Grand Prix Dressage Freestyle with El Santo at the Central Park Horse Show to your awesome afterlife adventure. It’s infused with some of your danciest hits, and we hope you’re doing a lot of that in the Avant Garde Ether.”

[Full article and video]

2. An Open Love Letter to Lani, the Weirdest Race Horse Ever

This year’s Triple Crown didn’t give us the kind of beautiful fairy-tale story we loved in 2015 — but it did give us plenty of unique characters, not the least of which was Lani. This gangly, quirky underdog from Japan captured our hearts and Lorraine Jackson’s open love letter to the horse was loved by lay racing fans and racetrackers alike!

“You got shipped out to Japan, which isn’t altogether unusual with the burgeoning racing and betting universe that exists there. You had some predictable starts, as well as some less predictable ones, like the time you won two races six days apart at the end of your 2-year-old year.

“Then your connections were like, ‘I know! What if we ship him to America, but we stop on the way (NOT REALLY ON THE WAY AT ALL) in Dubai and catch a race on the World Cup card, and THEN go to America!’ and everyone thought this was a great idea. But since you’re the weirdest horse in the world, you didn’t think this was weird at all, and went ahead and won the United Arab Emirates Derby.”

[Full article]

1. A Clydesdale April Fools

Longtime Horse Nation readers know that April Fools Day is one of our favorite days of the year — and we think we really outdid ourselves in 2016. Our very-clearly-a-spoof article about the beloved Clydesdales going missing only to be found surrounded by empty beer kegs was our most-read story of the year!

“The police report states that Budweiser long-haul driver Ed Murphy stopped in Colby, Kansas on Monday night at a planned layover location before finishing the drive to an event in Denver. The team was unloaded and moved to a secure turnout facility for the night, and when Murphy returned for the horses in the morning, the gate was wide open and the horses were gone.

“Anyone in the Midwest region is encouraged to keep an eye out for suspicious activity, and report anyone offering to sell a Clydesdale gelding. All eight of the horses are between 17-18.2 hands, have four white socks and white blazes, and answer to the names Bud, Buddy, Bud Light, Buddy Light, Bud with Lime, Boo Natty, and Craft Beers Suck.”

[Full article]

Happy New Year! Go riding.