By Redoute’s Choice out of a Zabeel mare, there were no doubt some high hopes for Reduction on the track. Unfortunately, he never made it past an unofficial trial as a two-year-old in 2010. He turned out to be a roarer (laryngeal hemiparalysis) and required tie-back surgery, but unfortunately had complications and then had a second operation – which led to further complications. Not surprisingly, his racing career was abandoned.
Equine veterinarian Emma Nicol purchased Reduction as a two-year-old and continued his treatment to recover from those surgery complications, before commencing retraining with him as a four-year-old in 2012. All was going well until Emma had to undergo a knee reconstruction two years later, and so Reduction went to Simon Tainsh for a few months to stay in work.
During that time, Reduction progressed from Introductory level to EvA95 – and Emma decided that was getting a little too serious for her. “He was suddenly going too well for me to get him back,” she laughs, explaining that the horse stayed on to train with Simon.
At the beginning of 2015, Simon unfortunately broke his leg and was going to be out of action for some time. With Reduction at a crucial point in his eventing career and Melbourne International Three-Day Event potentially on the cards that year, Emma handed the reins over to Yona and Nina Lloyd to continue the horse’s education and campaign him for Victoria’s premier winter event.
Once again, Reduction made great progress in a short space of time. “He went from an EvA95 horse to completing the CCI1* (now CCI2*L) at Melbourne in about four months,” recalls Nina. “It was a pretty phenomenal effort!”
Nina remembers the horse as one who was super easy to deal with. “He was a really friendly, pleasant horse. He was a good jumper; he had a good set of springs in him. He wasn’t very big, but he was a little gun!”
MORE FEATHERS IN THE CAP
Following Reduction’s Melbourne International 3DE campaign, the Lloyds’ competition team and schedule was oversubscribed and so Reduction was placed with Andrew Cooper, who was still based in Victoria at the time. The pair went on to compete at FEI level for nearly five years together, with a highlight being a win in the CIC3* (current CCI4*S) at Wandin International Horse Trials in 2017.
However, Reduction’s journey did take a small detour from the eventing circuit not long after that first FEI win. Suffering an unfortunate tendon injury later that year, he was spelled for 12 months. Emma, being a vet, rehabbed him during that time and he returned to work sound following the break. Prior to recommencing event training with Andrew, Emma competed him at the 2018 Barastoc HOTY show – winning the Led Thoroughbred class and finishing in the top 10 of the Ridden Thoroughbred class. Not a bad effort for a 10-year-old eventer!