Balou du Reventon

Photo courtesy of Shannon Brinkman
(2006 – )
Owned by Ann Charlotte Thompson
Inducted: 2022

Photos

Photo courtesy of Shannon Brinkman
Photo courtesy of Shannon Brinkman
Photo courtesy of Shannon Brinkman
Balou du Reventon is no stranger to success in the show jumping arena. He has punched his ticket to international events all over the world and has proven to be a top competitor under several international riders. Although "Balou" was successful in 4* and 5* events with rider Darragh Kenny aboard, the pairing between Balou and United States rider Brian Moggre seems to be a magical one.

In their brief time together, Moggre and Balou have accrued quite the win record. In fact, Balou had one of the most successful years of his show jumping career in 2021 with the young rider aboard.

Following Moggre taking over Balou's reins in 2020, the pair was selected to represent the U.S. Jumping Team at the Wellington CSIO4*, where they achieved their first win of the 2021 season. They then joined the U.S. in FEI Jumping Nations Cup Poland CSIO5*, finishing seventh. They jumped to another win in the Longines 1.60 Grand Prix CSIO5* and finished ninth at the Rolex 1.60m Grand Prix at the Royal Windsor CSI5* before being named as a reserve to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games team.

To build upon what would already be considered a very successful show season, Moggre and Balou made an impressive appearance at the prestigious CHIO Aachen in September, lifting the U.S. Jumping Team to their first gold-medal finish at the event since 2005 with a double clear effort. They rounded out the weekend by placing second in what is considered to be one of the most difficult showjumping classes in the world – the Rolex Grand Prix of Aachen. All totaled, they were clear in five consecutive 5* Grand Prix classes.

Owner Ann Thompson, who purchased the 16.2 Oldenburg stallion in the spring of 2018, selected Moggre as Balou's rider after talking with the head of the United States Equestrian Team and carefully reviewing video footage of talented young riders. The match has proven to be a winning one.

"I liked how correct [Brian] rides but also that he knew when to go for it," Thompson explained. "He has the courage to do what he needs to do. For me, the most amazing thing is how young Brian is but he rides as if he has been doing this forever. I also love that he spoils Balou rotten.”

Thompson shared that Balou – who she affectionately calls "Mr. Bubbles" – is not your stereotypical stallion.

"Balou is really kind and sweet at all times." she said. "For a stallion, it's rare. I can go a long time not seeing him and he still knows exactly who I am. In 2019, when I was going to a lot of horse shows, I would be in the crowd and he would look right at me as he was going by. I've never had a horse do that before."

Thompson described Balou as so happy with Brian and a total camera hog. She said that Balou has a people-oriented attitude and a tendency to please which are part of what makes him successful in the show arena.

"If you want a championship level horse, it's that five percent extra that they are going to try for you," Thompson explained, emphasizing the role of developing a relationship in bringing out a horse's true personality. "If they are not happy, it is no different than a physical pain.”

That winning personality, athleticism and talent are traits that Balou is also stamping his foals with. He has sired numerous international-level horses from limited foal crops and is proving that in addition to having a profound impact on the industry as a competitor, Balou du Reventon will still be contributing to the sport of show jumping long after he clears his last fence.