Voltaire was really the first of the super star performance stallions to go on and prove himself equally as important as a breeding stallion. In the competition arena, he won at the highest level, winning Nations Cup classes at Calgary, Stockholm, s’Hertogenbosch, Lanaken, Helsinki, Wiesbaden and Wembley. In 1989 he won the Grand Prix of Berlin.
And yet he was a horse that no-one wanted!
He was a bit small (just 162 cms) and had a problem with one hoof, and he was rejected by the Oldenburg licensing commission. That didn’t deter Jan Greve, a Dutch veterinarian with a passion for breeding jumping horses and his partner, Henk Nijhoff. They heard that the young stallion was for sale, liked his technique and took him home to The Netherlands. The KWPN licensing commission was not much more enthusiastic than their Oldenburg counterparts, Voltaire was graded 14th out of the fourteen horses to complete the performance test. He received excellent marks for jumping (and stable manners!) but just made it to stallion status.
After a sensational performance career, Voltaire stood at Jan Greve’s picturesque stud De Watermolen, dominated by an ancient mill and water wheel, Voltaire started to prove that his explosive mix of the best of the French and the best of the German jumping lines, could weave a special magic.
Voltaire is by Furioso II, one of the first Selle Français stallions to come to Germany. Originally called Vertuoso, the two and a half year old French stallion was imported to Germany by the great Oldenburg breeder, Georg Vorwerk. Voltaire is out of Gogo Moeve by the great Hanoverian stallion, Gotthard. Gogo Moeve was the dam of successful competition horses Fandango R, PS Falkan and Petite Fleur. Her dam sire is the English Thoroughbred, More Magic xx, who was the sire of 1980 Moscow Olympic dressage gold medallist, Mon Cherie.
Out of his first crop of foals Voltaire produced the approved stallion, Concorde, who after an international jumping career with Jos Lansink and Eric van der Vleuten (including the Dutch showjumping championship in 1994) is in the process of writing his name into the history books as a breeding stallion in his own right.
Voltaire is represented by a staggering 28(!) jumpers in the WBFSH standings for 2000/2001 - and is ranked 9th in the top 50 sires in the ten years from 1991 to 2000.
info and photos from www.horsemagazine.com