L.A. Baltic Inspiration Says Good Bye

4/27/1991 - 2/1/2013

Gail Hoff And Inspiration Perform At An Open House

To those who knew and loved him - February 1, 2013, Inspiration broke his right hind pastern and had to be put down. It seemed so strange to me. I had decided to bring him to my home to enjoy the three acres of grass in my back field and I was less than a mile from home when I felt him moving in the trailer in an unusual way. He was not kicking or falling and I was going just 30 mph, but I felt something was wrong so I pulled over and took a look. I saw him breathing hard and standing on three legs. Hoping that he banged himself and was just sore, I crept on home, unloaded him and knew then that he had broken his pastern. My vet, Dr April Armstrong, came immediately, confirmed that he had broken his leg and, in her kind and professional way, put him down.

I guess it was some sort of fate. He must have stepped funny in the trailer and I guess the pastern was ready to break. There was not even more than a little scuff mark on the side of the trailer. The vet said that such accidents are not so rare but with an experienced traveler like Inspiration, it was a shock.

Inspiration was so special to me. From the moment I delivered him in NJ to the moment I stood by him at his death, he was never less than a beautiful and noble horse who gave of himself in everything he did. He will be remembered and loved for years to come and his offspring will continue to spread his legacy.

Below are a few photos and highlights from his life:

He started his life under the watchful and caring eye of Dr Joe Pollara who catered to his every ailment, although his ailments were few. (He never even had 1 case of colic his whole life). When he was born I knew right away that he was a "once in a lifetime" colt with so much presence and a kingly attitude from the moment he first stood up.  

Oliva Carls, Apprentice Trainer At Los Alamos Dressage Center, Holds L.A. Utrilla And Scratches Her Head Wondering What Inspiration Is Thinking Of Doing Next

Inspiration At Four Months Old

Bernardo Vergara From Chile And Inspiration As A Yearling At Dressage At Devon

As a two year old he proved this destiny at Dressage At Devon where Bernardo Vegara showed him to win the Colt Championship. Inspiration was also presented the American Breeder’s Award for Horse Best Representing the Ideals of Sporthorse Breeding in the United States.

Bernardo Vergara Shows Inspriation To Win Champion Colt And American Breeder's Award As A Two Year Old At Dressage At Devon

He was first backed by Capt. Max Piraino and his wife, Carla, when they came from Chile to visit Los Alamos Dressage Center. Max was a member of the Dressage team in Chile and Carla had been on the 3 Day Event team in Argentina. Yet Inspiration showed off the power he possessed as he bought property for them with his high hearted and air borne bucks. However, they persevered with equally good natures and ability and in the end they had Inspiration moving with ease and grace WITH a rider on his back.


Max And Carla Piraino From Chile Attend Open House At Los Alamos Dressage Center And Show L.A. Baltic Gold. They Broke Inspiration During Their Same Stay

The good work of Max and Carla together with Gail’s training, allowed Inspiration to go to Dressage At Devon as a three year old where he and Gail won the Suitable to Become a Dressage Horse Class and apprentice trainer, Olivia Carls showed him in hand to win Champion Swedish Warmblood.

Gail Hoff And Inspiration As A Three Year Old Win Suitable To Become A Dressage Horse At Devon

Inspiration Is Named Champion Swedish Warmblood With Oliva Carls Showing Him At Dressage At Devon As A Three Year Old

As a four year old, Inspiration had a very busy and productive year. He was old enough now to prove his talent as a jumper and dressage horse and to be inspected for a breeding license by the Swedish Warmblood Association.

Ana Maria Espinosa, an apprentice trainer from Ecuador, had been National Champion junior show jumper rider in her country and she loved to event. So she and Inspiration entered and won the first and only horse trial he ever competed in and thus completed performance requirements for a breeding license if he became approved by the inspection team from Sweden.

Ana Maria Espinosa And Inspiration Win Their First Horse Trial

Ana Maria Espinosa And Inspiration Gallop Cross Country

Inspiration made his first mark as a four year old at the International Jumper Futurity with Alex Chtcherba, Riding Master and former team coach from Russia, aboard and it was Alex who immediately recognized the tremendous jumping ability Inspiration possessed in addition to his talent and gaits for dressage.

Alex Chtcherba And Inspiration Win The Conformation Division Of The International Jumper Futurity

Alex Chtcherba Shows Inspiration At The International Jumper Futurity

After the International Jumper Futurity, the Swedish Warmblood Association Inspection team came to Los Alamos Dressage Center to inspect young horses and Inspiration was granted a breeding license by them since he had already completed his performance requirements and passed their inspection while receiving the highest scores ever awarded any young Swedish Warmblood stallion in North America. He received at total of 42 out of a possible 50 conformation points, scoring a 9 for Head, Neck and Body, 8 for Type, 7 for Legs 10 for Walk and 8 for trot. His gaits under rider scores were equally impressive: 10 for walk, 8 for trot and 8 for canter.

The Swedish Warmblood Association In Sweden Approves Inspiration As A Breeding Stallion

Later he was given a Life Time Breeding License and Star Stallion Rating by the Oldenberg N.A. registry based on his outstanding performances in sport as well as in the breeding shed.

Inspiration At The Oldenberg N.A. Stallion Inspection

Inspiration loved to jump. His whole face would smile, it seemed, when he got into a ring with jumps. Yet, he was born in a dressage stable and he also had talent and ability for that.

Interesting that out of a seeming conflict of interests, true inspiration is often born and nurtured and this horse lived up to his name in every way. With the help again of Alex Chtcherba, who helped to train Inspiration in Dressage, as well as the legendary multi Olympian Show Jumper and chef d'equipe, Frank Chapot as trainer, international rider, Laura Chapot as rider and my good friend and former Olympian, Mary Chapot as coordinator and cheerleader, I managed to develop Inspiration both as a dressage horse as well as a show jumper.

With Gail as his rider, he won USDF Horse Of the Year Championships every year up through Prix St. George. During the same time, he also won the U.S. Dressage Breeders Futurity and was Reserve Champion at the Eastern Regional International Jumper Futurity as a five year old.

Inspiration Wins International Jumper Futurity With Laura Chapot As A Five Year Old

Gail Hoff, Inspiration, Frank Chapot, Mary Chapot And Laura Chapot (Mounted) At The International Jumper Futurity As A Five Year Old

Under the skillful coaching of Frank Chapot and outstanding riding of Laura Chapot, Inspiration was named Champion of the Eastern Regional and International Jumper Futurity as a six year old.

Laura Chapot And Inspiration Win The International Jumper Futurity As A Six Year Old

In 1998 Inspiration returned to Dressage At Devon to win Champion Stallion, Champion Mature Horse and Reserve Grand Champion.

Lisa Basselini, Manager And Apprentice Trainer At Los Alamos Dressage, Ran Her Legs Off (Even After First Putting Herself In Marathon Training) At Dressage At Devon And Inspiration Was Named Champion Stallion, Champion Mature Horse And Reserve Grand Champion - 1998

Inspiration Wins His Class At Dressage At Devon - 1998

Lisa Basselini And Inspiration Win Stallion Championship At Dressage At Devon - 1998

Lisa Basselini And Inspiration Win Mature Horse Championship At Dressage At Devon - 1998

Inspiration Also Wins Reserve Grand Championship At Dressage At Devon - 1998 Here He Displays All Three Championship Ribbons

The Chapot's recognized the outstanding talent of Inspiration, bred some of their Thoroughbred mares to him and then took him on the winter circuit in Wellington, FL to win the Intermediate Jumper championship of the circuit.

Laura Chapot Competes Inspiration On The Florida Circuit And Is Named Champion Intermediate Jumper. They Went On To Compete Successfully In Grand Prix Jumpers And To Win The Gambler's Choice Class At The Devon Horse Show

Inspiration competed successfully through Grand Prix jumpers with Laura aboard and through Prix St George at the same time with Gail Hoff. He won the Gambler’s Choice at Devon Horse Show as an eight year old as well as the Hunter Farms Grand Prix Jumper Derby. Indeed, he truly melded the best of the Dressage and Show Jumping Worlds!

Laura Chapot And Inspiration Win The Hunter Farms Grand Prix Jumper Derby

Laura Chapot And Inspiration At The Grand Prix Jumper Derby

After retiring from the show arena, he went on to learn all the movements of Grand Prix Dressage but his competition days were over but his fame and demand as a breeding stallion continued throughout his life. He went sired over 100 offspring, many of which have been very successful as jumpers and/or dressage horses. One of them is L.A Baltic Kharma who traveled in her father's hoof prints by also winning the International Jumper Futurity as well as being named Champion Mare at Dressage at Devon. Kharma earned diplomas at her SWB mare inspection in both dressage and jumping and was the highest scoring mare in North America for years to come.

L.A. Baltic Kharma, By L.A. Baltic Inspiration And Out Of L.A. Rose Of Sweden, Wins Mare Championship At Dressage At Devon

L.A. Baltic Kharma Jumping 1.3m Course In Wellington, FL With Andre Etmekdjian

The last of my mares to be bred to Inspiration was the Premium A mare, L.A. Rose Of Sweden. She was the mother of Kharma and I named her last foal L.A. Baltic Finale. As a 2 year old, Finale traveled across the country with Inspiration, Kharma, Highlite and Wellington to CA as I ended one period of my life by selling the farm in NJ and moving to Ojai, CA to began another.  In California, Inspiration served as a School Master for my new Apprentice and Assistant Trainer, Mallory Schneider, teaching her to feel all of the movements of Grand Prix Dressage.

Mallory Schneider, Assistant And Apprentice Trainer With Gail In CA Takes Advantage Of The Opportunity To Learn Higher Level Dressage From Inspiration

L.A. Baltic Finale, full sister to L.A. Baltic Kharma, started training in Dressage at her new home in California but later joined L.A. Baltic Highlite in Wellington, FL where she started a show career in show jumping with Andre Etmekdjian.

Gail Hoff And L.A.Baltic Finale, By L.A. Baltic Inspiration, Team Up To Create An Article On Dressage Training For Dressage Today Magazine

Andre Etmekdjian, now a US citizen from Azerbaijan, was training L.A. Baltic Highlite in jumping at the time I sold my farm in N.J. and moved to Ojai, CA He and his whole family pitched in to help with the move. It was a time of great change and Andre was always there with a helping hand. And so it is now that the last daughter I bred by Inspiration, L.A. Baltic Finale, after starting a show career in dressage with my assistant in CA, Mallory Schneider, has gone on to begin proving herself in the jumper arena under the kind and skillful rider/trainer Andre Etmekdjian. She competed brilliantly over a 3'3" course at her first jumper show at the WEF in Wellington the same day her father passed. I know he was so proud of her.

L.A. Baltic Finale Showing At The Winter Equestrian Festival

Click On The Arrow In The Middle Of The Screen To View The Video.

Inspiration will always be near and dear to me and I am so thankful to him for having brought so many wonderful friends to me from all around the world. Thank you all for being a major part of our lives. As he joins former Olympian, Maj. Hector Carmona, as well as L.A. Baltic Sun, his sire, and L.A. Utrilla, his dam, he returns to gallop pain free over all of the jumps he can ever imagine.

Good bye Inspiration. Bon Voyage. You will forever live in our hearts.

Thanks to Jan-Ove Olsson of Sweden for helping us to find and import two fillies and the colt, L.A. Baltic Sun from Sweden.  They all are amazing Swedish Warmblood foundation horses which have left a bright stamp on sport horse breeding in North America and whose blood will flow forth for many generations to come. They have crossed well with many different breeds, producing numerous champions along the way.

Jan-Ove Olsson Of Sweden Who Helped Us Find And Import Our SWB Horses. He Is A Trainer, Judge And Breeder Of Dressage Horses. He Is On The Board Of The ASVH, The Swedish Warmblood Association Of Sweden, Where He Has The Responsibility Of Training And Educating Judges In Conformation, Gaits And Jumping

Los Alamos Baltic horses (L.A. Baltic) have left a huge stamp on sport horse breeding in North America and their legacy lives on. The three foundation horses were the colt, L.A. Baltic Sun and two mares, L.A. Utrilla and L.A. Rose of Sweden. All were imported as yearlings from Sweden.

L.A. Baltic Sun – Sire of L.A. Baltic Inspiration

L.A. Baltic Sun (Pontus x Nirana – Cyrano), Sire Of L.A. Baltic Inspiration, Was Bred By Per Ivan Paulsson Of Sweden

“Sun” was licensed as a stallion in the USA and later awarded Premium A breeding status by the SWB Association based on his outstanding record as a sire of four approved stallions, two diploma mares and several other outstanding performance horses.  Sun was named Champion Colt and Champion Young Horse as a three year old at Dressage At Devon. He competed with Gail through Grand Prix dressage earning U.S.D.F. Horse of the Year Awards at every level along the way. Baltic Sun was truly a beautiful and elegant horse and he stamped every offspring he sired with his good looks at athletic ability.  

Hector Carmona, Jr. Shows L.A. Baltic Sun At Dressage At Devon And Wins Champion Colt And Champion Young Horse Titles When "Sun" Was A Three Year Old

L.A. Baltic Sun As A Three Year Old

L.A. Baltic Sun And Gail Hoff Competed Through Grand Prix Dressage

L.A. Baltic Sun Always Stamped His Offspring With His Good Looks


L.A. Utrilla – Dam of L.A. Baltic Inspiration

L.A. Utrilla (Utrillo x Hetty - Drabant) was bred at Flyinge, the State Stud of Sweden, and became a Premium A mare. She is the dam of L.A. Baltic Inspiration and many other outstanding offspring.



L.A. Rose Of Sweden – Dam of L.A. Baltic Kharma And Finale

L.A. Rose Of Sweden (Burggraf x Prima-Magnifque) was bred by Ake Billing of Sweden. She became a Premium A mare and is the dam of L.A. Baltic Kharma and L.A. Baltic Finale, both by Inspiration.

"Rosie" also produced two approved stallions, L.A. Baltic Sundance and L.A. Baltic Sunrise by L.A. Baltic Sun as well as maniy other outstanding offspring.


Inspiration Free Jumping At Open House


Bo Jena, Dressage Coach For Swedish Team, Long Reins Inspiration

Goodbye, Inspiration. You have been a huge Inspiration to me and your offspring are proudly carrying on the legacy.


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