Ever since its establishment in 1955, more than 700 Canadians have been inducted into the country’s highest sporting order, the Sports Hall of Fame. And on Sunday evening, that number grew by two more with the induction of show-jumping team Eric Lamaze and horse Hickstead during a virtual ceremony.
Joining the order in the Team category, the pair are widely regarded to be the best of their particular era. Their accolades span many a title and event – including their Olympic Championships title won at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, as well as leading Canada to the silver medal for team participation that year.
Hickstead & Lamaze: A Wild Run
In 2010, the championship pair went on to earn a bronze medal at Lexington’s World Championships for individual participation. Hickstead at that particular event received an additional special award – that of “Best Horse”.
But Lamaze and Hickstead share many an astounding performance on the global stage – including team silver and an individual bronze medal won at Rio’s 2007 Pan American Games, and several more championship title wins in Canada (2007 and 2011), Rome (2011), Switzerland (2008), and Germany (2010).
Being inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame is the greatest honour any sportsman, sportswoman, or horse, can possibly receive from their country, said Lamaze earlier this week. The 53-year-old paid homage to Hickstead, saying he had been one-of-a-kind and completely in his own league. Together, they were proud to represent their country on the global stage, said a clearly emotional Lamaze.
Hickstead, who died of a heart attack at 15 years of age on Nov. 6, 2011, was a Dutch Warmblood stallion. During his illustrious career, he won more than CA$4 million in prize money.
On November 6, 2011, Hickstead collapsed during a competition in Verona, Italy, after finishing a round on the track. He passed away of a rupture to his aorta.
Lamaze Awarded Order Of Sport
Lamaze this year received another award and honour also, in addition to his and Hickstead’s induction in the Sports Hall of Fame.
Lamaze during a competition at Spruce Meadows in Calgary in September got awarded the coveted Order of Sport. This would have meant a great deal to the champion rider because of the massive bronze statue of Hickstead overlooking the beautiful plaza at the venue.
Lamaze has one more than one occasion in the past spoken great words in Hickstead’s honour and said on Sunday that Hickstead was the real champion of everything the duo had achieved during his lifetime.
He said that he himself had only but tagged along for the ride.