Ashlee Meeus-Bond (ISR) issued a statement announcing the retirement of her top mount Chela LS to become a broodmare. The American-born rider who represents Israel and the 15-year-old chestnut La Silla mare (Chapultepec La Silla x Tlaloc La Silla) recorded 7 FEI-level wins together: the Grand Prix CSI 3* at Liège, important classes at the Del Mar International Horse Show CSI 2*-W, Sacramento International Horse Show CSI 2*-W, Thermal CSI 3*-W, CSI 2*-W and CSI 3*.
Their brightest moment together was back in 2014 when they claimed top honors in the AIG $1 Million Grand Prix at Hits Thermal, the competition being one of the three jewels of the Hits Triple Crown.
Recently, the chestnut was part of the team in Moscow that qualified Israel for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The rider issued the following statement on her Facebook account:
“Retirement is never an easy choice, but once the decision is made, there’s no better feeling than knowing you’re doing what’s right for your horse. I first tried Chela LS six years ago at Spruce Meadows, and from there, we’ve gone on to accomplish incredible things: top honors in the AIG $1 Million, World Cup Qualifier wins, the World Equestrian Games, and our finale: representing Israel at CSIO Moscow where the team secured a spot at the 2020 Olympic Games. She’s made multiple comebacks throughout her career, but now, at the age of 15, it’s time for her to enjoy relaxing in a large field with her future babies to come. Thank you to my team for all that they’ve done for ChellyBean and to her fans and supporters–we couldn’t have done it without you!”
Later, the American-born rider who represents Israel, went into details about her decision to retire the chestnut mare:
“Thank you for all the kind messages in response to Chela’s retirement. As to the why behind our decision: in the past, she’s had two very serious staph infections in her hocks. We almost lost her twice. No one thought then that she would return to the sport, let alone to the top level—so everything in the last couple years has been a bonus. Lately, the arthritis in her hocks have required a lot of management, and I could tell her heart wasn’t in it anymore. She owes me nothing, and I’m excited for her next chapter as a broodmare here in Belgium.”
For Chela LS’ full FEI profile and results, please click here.
Source: Statement on Ashlee Meeus-Bond’s account on Facebook
Photos: © Ashlee Meeus-Bond / ESI Photography