the handsome grey Thoroughbred gelding, is regarded as
one the greatest show-jumping horses in history. He is
the only horse to have won the American Grand Prix
Assocation Horse of the Year Award three times. He may
also be the first gelding to sire several offspring...
Registered originally as Icey Twist, Gem Twist was born
a sorrel with a star and one front sock, but quickly
greyed out into the eye-catching color we all know. In
his debut year jumping Grand Prix he won his first Horse
of the Year award, and never looked back. He also helped
win Team Silver at the Pan Am Games that year, then went
on to bring home two silver medals at the 1988 Olympics.
In 1990, he was named "World's Best Horse" at the World
Equestrian Games in Stockholm. He took three different
riders to championships, and retired a champion in 1997.
He was inducted into the United States Show Jumping Hall
of Fame in 2002. Gem passed away in 2006, at the age of
Despite being a gelding,
his first foal arrived on September15, 2008. The foal, and several
others born since, are clones of Gem Twist. It appears all were born
sorrels with a white star and a single front sock, and have begun to
grey out, true to their sire's color. It is hoped that they will
carry on his magnificent bloodlines. The first foal, called Gemini,
is owned by the Chapot family of New Jersey, owners of Gem Twist.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Chapot rode in the Olympics, with Frank
campaigning on Gem Twist's sire Good Twist, so they had a
sentimental reason for cloning the big grey: "It was something I
could give to my daughter," he said. So, will Gemini become a great
jumper? He won't be competed, just stood at stud, but he definitely
has the spark: At ten months old, he escaped his pasture by jumping
a 3-foot, nine-inch fence! Two younger siblings called Anytime and
Timeless, born in 2012, are being trained for the show ring, so
watch for them to become future champions!
Breyer honored Gem Twist with his own portrait sculpture in 1993,
depicting him cantering lightly between fences, ears pricked.
Gem Twist #495, "Gem Twist,
Champion Show Jumper." Model made from 1993 to 1994.
Gifted was purchased by Carol
Lavell as an untrained four-year-old. She obviously had a good eye,
as under her tutelage, he quickly rose through the levels in the
dressage world. The huge, 17.1- (some say 17.3-) hand Hanoverian
with the high socks and blaze was foaled in 1980, and by 1988 was
named US Dressage Federation Horse of the Year for Fourth Level and
Grand Prix St. Georges levels. With the United States in a
twelve-year dry spell for international Dressage medals, it is said
that Gifted put the US back on the radar, helping bring home Team
Bronze twice. He remained Carol's companion his entire life.
Breyer honored Gifted
with this hand-numbered Limited Edition portrait model in 1994. Only
9,000 were made.
Hanoverian #887, "Gifted,
1992 Olympic Dressage Bronze Medal Winner."
Gypsy King was one of those rare horses whose name
starts with "The" for a reason. Truly a king among Gypsy Vanners,
this handsome black and white pinto is the reason so many of us fell
in love with the breed. He was huge, powerfully built, strikingly
marked, and wore the heavy mane, tail and feathering that's the
breed's trademark. Although he passed away in 2015, he has left his
indelible mark on the Gypsy Horse breed with over 90 offspring.
Friesian #1148, "The Gypsy
King." Made from 2000 to 2007.
a German-bred mare from Standardbred bloodlines, holds the World
Record for the most Gold Medals (five) by a single horse! While
training to be a steeplechaser, her talent caught the attention of
the Olympic Team trainer, and she began her rise to stardom. Too
difficult to handle on cross-country courses, she became unbeatable
as a stadium jumper. She and her rider went on to win 125
competitions together before she was retired to become a broodmare.
Halla lived a good long life, enjoying the sunshine into her 34th
year, and proving beyond a doubt that trotting-horses can compete in
more than just trotting races!
Breyer had Chris Hess sculpt a tribute model to this famous athlete
Halla #63, "Halla, Famous
Jumper." Model made from 1997 to 1985.
Hills Wall Street: This adorable release on the Brighty
mold is a portrait of Hickory Hills Wall Street, a young champion
Miniature Donkey with a bright future ahead of him! This cutie was
born in 2013 and already has several championships under his belt.
He displays primitive markings, including a bold Mary's Cross and
leg barring all the way to his fetlocks.
Brighty #1761, "Hickory
Hills Wall Street." Made from 2016 to the present.
was a handsome bay Dutch Warmblood stallion who earned the title
"Best Horse in the World" in Show Jumping. The title was earned
after he completed an extremely rare four clear rounds with four
different riders at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in 2010.
(In this unique format event, the four highest-scoring horses swap
riders.) With his regular rider Eric Lamaze, he brought an
Individual Gold Medal home to Canada from the 2008 Beijing Olympics,
and led the team to a Team Silver Medal. His was the first
individual Gold Medal in Equestrian ever won by Canada, making him
and Eric household names there. Hickstead tragically passed away in
2011 of an aortic rupture as he completed the final fence in an
A life-sized bronze, created by ArtWorks Foundry, is now on
permanent display at Spruce Meadows in Calgary, Canada, in his
memory. A plaque on the base says "Love Always ~ Hickstead."
Trakehner #1439, "Hickstead."
Made from 2012 to 2015.
(the name is a Spanish term for minor nobility) was the name of a
Mustang owned by Frank Hopkins, who was part of Buffalo Bill's Wild
West show and claimed to be the greatest distance-rider on Earth.
Disney's 2004 movie Hidalgo honored the legend that Frank and
Hidalgo participated in a grueling long-distance race across the
Saudi Arabian peninsula, facing ethnic disparagement against both
him and his horse, and having many adventures along the way. After
returning to America, Hopkins became an outspoken supporter of
Mustangs. In the movie, Hopkins was portrayed by Viggo Mortensen and
Hidalgo was played by the Paint horse TJ. Viggo, well-known as a
horse lover, purchased TJ after filming was complete, and even rode
into movie premiers on the handsome sorrel pinto.
Breyer produced an entire
Hidalgo product line for the film's
release. The Silver mold was a lovely choice for the
Traditional-sized Hidalgo, and while it was only produced from
2004-2006, it remains popular today.
Silver #1220, "Hidalgo." Made
from 2004 to 2006.
Run was a Maryland-bred Thoroughbred who proved
successful as a hunter-jumper from a young age. After making quite
an impression at age 6, he was purchased by Mexico and competed
there, taking home Individual Gold and Team Silver for that country
in the 1975 Pan-American Games before being purchased and brought
back to the US to continue his career under rider Michael Matz. With
Matz's guidance, he took the Individual Gold and helped the US Team
win Team Gold at the Puerto Rico Pan-American Games in 1979. Among
his many other accomplishments, he also won the American Gold Cup
twice, making it look effortless, as in the photo to the left.
Jet Run #3035, "U.S.
Equestrian Team Gift Set." Made from 1980 to 1993.
Patchen: The black Standardbred stallion Joe Patchen,
sire of famous racehorse Dan Patch, was himself famous in his day.
He was unusually tall and long-legged for a Standardbred, but it
seemed to be to his advantage. Foaled in 1889, he won 53% of his
starts and placed second in 39% more. He set the World Record for a
half-mile track in 1896 at 2:05 1/4, a record that stood for seven
years until it was broken by his own son Dan Patch.
John Henry #836, "Joe Patchen, Sire of Dan Patch." Made from
Henry is a legend among racehorses. Named for
legendary steel-driving man who raced machinery and won, John Henry
lived up to the hype. Small in stature, unremarkable in breeding,
and with an attitude that got him gelded at an early age, John
Henry's is a Cinderella story for the ages. He sold at auction for
merely $1,100, but went on to become the richest Thoroughbred of his
time. With the right care and training, he proved that talent
outweighs breeding, winning 30 stakes races, 7 Eclipse Awards, and
being voted Horse of the Year twice. Anyone who ever met him (and I
count myself lucky enough to be among them) will never forget this
tough little race horse. John Henry enjoyed a long retirement at
Kentucky Horse Park with lots of care and attention until he passed
peacefully at age 32. Still, his legend lives on.
Breyer John Henry #445, "John
Henry, Famous Race Horse." Made from 1988-1990.
Morgan, father of the Morgan Horse breed and star of
the Marguerite Henry book of the same name, was a little bay horse
that made a big impression wherever he went. Owned by a traveling
school teacher, he became locally famous for being able to work hard
all day and win races at night. He could pull more weight than
horses bigger than him and his high-headed, high-stepping charisma
wowed all who saw him. Breyer honored him with this Chris Hess
sculpt in 1977.
Justin Morgan #65, "Justin
Morgan." Model made from 1977 to 1989.
a handsome 17.1-hand sorrel gelding, helped the US win Team Bronze
in Dressage at the Montreal Olympics, Individual Gold in the Pan-Am
Games in Puerto Rico, and then Individual Silver when the Pan-Am
Games came to Mexico City, along with the US National Dressage
Championship an amazing four times! he was inducted into the US
Dressage Federation hall of Fame in 1997.
Keen #3035, "U.S.
Equestrian Team Gift Set." Model made from 1980 to 1993.
is one of the top-ranked US Thoroughbred race horses of all time,
and beat more champions and Hall of Famers than any other horse in
the 20th Century! He was born at Claiborne Farms in Kentucky in
1957, and because of his temperment, was gelded young (didn't help,
according to sources), which is why he isn't as well-known today as
he would have been if he'd gone to stud.
At age three, Kelso broke the record for a mile race for horses of
that age, and equaled Man O' War's record time for 1-5/8 mile. He
raced for an impressive 8 seasons, then took on a second career as a
hunter / jumper. His final public appearance was in the parade
before the Jockey Gold Cup Race at Belmont Park in 1983, at age 26.
He passed away the next day, hopefully with the crowd's cheers still
in his memory.
Breyer's mold captures a quality Kelso was known for: being light on
his feet. His trainer once said he "could wheel on a dime, spinning
round in a circle and never letting his feet touch each other." He
is a coffee bay with one hind sock and a solid face.
Kelso #601, "Kelso."
Model made from 1975-1990.
Kennebec Count was a
magnificent horse. There's a quality that a few horses have - Man O'
War's owner called it "the look of eagles." They know they're great,
and seem like kings looking out over their adoring public. Count was
one of those very special horses. He was a stunning sorrel Morgan
stallion with a flaxen mane and tail, and with his son Kennebec
Russel, was a three-time National Pairs Combined Driving Champion.
Eleda had the privilege of meeting Count and Russell at their home
and says they were the only horses, other than Friesians, that moved
her to tears just to look at them. They were handsome beyond words,
with their long, golden manes and forelocks, and even in their
stalls, "You couldn't help feeling you were looking at royalty."
Kennebec Count #599,
"Kennebec Count." Model made from 2005-2007.
This handsome bay pinto on the Mustang mold is a portrait of Kola,
owned by well-known horse trainer and clinician GaWaNi Pony Boy.
Pony Boy taught the importance of relationships when training
horses, and was a special guest at BreyerFest 1998 along with Kola.
They are pictured here doing a demo at BreyerFest.
Semi-Rearing Mustang #756, "Gawani
Pony Boy's Kola." Made from 1999-2002.
Seni II is a star in the Andalusian world, racking up
title after title, and earning fans everywhere he goes, including
BreyerFest. Born in 2000, Joe and Nancy Latta purchased him as a
young stallion in Spain and brought him to the US. In Joe's first
time handling a horse in a halter class, they came away with a
Reserve, and from then on, they never looked back. Not just a pretty
face, Kripton performs in Western Pleasure, Hunt Seat, and Dressage
Hack, showing what an all-around athlete he is. At the 2009
International Andalusian and Lusitano Horse Association's Nationals,
competing against horses from around the world, he came away with
the Overall High-Point Andalusian title and was named Horse of the
Year by the organization.
Andalusian Stallion #1472,
"Krypton Seni II, Champion Andalusian Stallion." Made from
a beautiful copper chestnut mare, was the very first AQHA World
Champion in Halter. She was bred and owned by famous country singer
Lynn Anderson, who was a renowned Quarter and Paint Horse breeder,
as well as being an all-around kind person. Lynn often volunteered
for charity, helped found the Special Riders Program in Tennessee
that brought children with physical and mental challenges to horses,
and was active in getting riding events approved for the Special
Olympics. As a matter of fact, another of her horses Skipsters
Chief, was also immortalized by Breyer as a poster horse for
handicapped riding programs.
In 1976, Breyer asked Anderson if they could
create a portrait model of her horse Lady Phase. Chris Hess and
Peter Stone, then head of marketing and product development for
Breyer, visited Anderson and Lady Phase for a photo shoot near
Nashville. She worked very closely with our model makers to
create the perfect sculpt to capture Lady Phase's character and
muscle detail. When the model was complete, Lady Phase was
released as a Traditional size model, which was also available
in a play set. In addition, Anderson was featured in a 1976
issue of Just About Horses (JAH). She even worked with Breyer to
create a "little book" called "I've Always Loved Horses," which
included her journey with Lady Phase and her other horses, as
well as advice about owning your own horse.
Breyer Lady Phase
#40, "Lynn Anderson's Lady Phase." Model made from
Legionario III was one of the
most influential sires in the breed in the 20th Century. He was a
pure Carthusian Andalusian and the Spanish National Champion in
1969. With his presence, conformation, and color, he was a
showstopper, and his progeny continue win championships all over the
Legionario III #68,
"Legionario III, Famous Andalusian." Model made from 1979 to 1990.
Champion Welsh Cob Llanarth
True Briton was
honored with a Breyer tribute model in 1994. Born in 1976, the dark
sorrel with three socks and a star, known around the barn as
"Tubby," has become one of the breed's leading sires.
True Briton #494, "Llanarth True Briton Champion Welsh Cob."
Model made from 1994 to 1996.
O' War: Few horse names evoke so much admiration as does
the name Man O' War. Foaled in 1917 and named for submarine that
debuted for the Great War, this 16.2-hand, copper chestnut with a
little round star and faint stripe became the great racehorse the
world has known, according to many sources. His owner, Samuel
Riddle, who was new to racing, took great care of his star colt, not
allowing him to race in the Kentucky Derby because he believed it
was too early in a horse's life for him to run that distance. He
handily won the Preakness and Belmont, though, and then beat the
one-year-older Triple Crown Winner Sir Barton in a match race by 7
lengths, leading the whole way.
Riddle retired Man O' War after that race, refusing to put him
through carrying the huge weights handicappers insisted he'd have to
carry to make the race fair to bettors. Instead, he brought the
four-year-old to stud, where he became the most prolific sire of
Thoroughbred champions in history. With the care of Mr. Riddle and
the superb grooms he hired, Man O' War lived to be 30 years old.
Riddle commissioned a life-sized statue of him to stand over his
grave, and after Riddle's death, the property that included Man O'
War's (and his son War Admiral's) graves was donated to the city of
Lexington to become a park. In the early 1970s, the horses were
re-interred at the newly developed Kentucky Horse Park, where you
can visit them today.
Breyer's Chris Hess sculpted Man O' War
as he appeared at stud - Rugged and heavily muscled. This release
ran from 1967-1995, showing how popular the stallion remained (and
still remains) after his passing.
Man O' War #47, "Man O' War."
Model made from 1967 to 1995.
Boon: The gorgeous Gypsy Drum Horse stallion Mariah's
Boon was honored as the Celebration Model for Breyerfest 2012 with
this portrait on the Othello mold. This big guy is as lucky as he is
handsome. After a show as a youngster, he began running a fever. His
owner Laura Moon brought him to the University of Florida, where it
was discovered he had developed a basketball-sized abcess in his
He required two surgeries and a portal with catheter to be installed
from his stomach out through his skin to allow the abcess to drain.
Laura tended him devotedly, flushing the catheter twice a day...
Then one day, small pieces of metal began washing out of the
catheter - The cause of his illness had been discovered! Probably
bits of metal wire had gotten mixed into the hay at the show and
after being ingested, had worked their way into the wall of his
stomach. Without the care of the vets at UF and his loving owner,
Boon almost certainly wouldn't have made it. But here he is today, a
glorious representative of the Gypsy Drum Horse and one of the most
handsome Celebration Models Breyer has produced!
Othello #711140, "Mariah's
Boon. Made in 2012 only.
Miss Sheba is the gold standard of mules - Having won
pretty much every championship open to her! With skills ranging from
halter to Western Pleasure, Dressage, Sidesaddle, Trail and even
more, she's more than just a pretty face. Breyer honored Sheba with
a portrait model from 2003-2005. On the Brown Sunshine mold, she
wears Sheba's buckskin (or dun) coat with her Mary's Cross marking
and leg barring.
Breyer Brown Sunshine #1207,
"Maynard's Miss Sheba." Made from 2003 to 2005.
Sun was a leading sire of Tennessee Walking Horses and a
two-time World Champion in his own right. In fact, only four horses
outside of his bloodline have become World Champions since 1949! He
was born in 1940 and stood just under 16 hands high. He was
originally called Joe Lewis Wilson, but changed to the catchier name
Midnight Sun, presumably because of his solid black color and
"sunny" disposition. He was such a calm fellow that children were
often given bareback rides on him so they could say they'd ridden a
two-time World Grand Champion. He enjoyed a retirement at stud until
he passed away at age 25. Even though Breyer's sculpt depicts him
with a "Big Lick" stride, that is a trend that didn't develop until
after his time, and Midnight Sun was actually shown in standard keg
Midnight Sun #60, "Midnight Sun
Tennessee Walker." Model made from 1972-1987.
Tango, ridden by Bruce Davison, was a star eventer,
winning Individual Gold in the World Three-Day Eventing
championship. Bruce acquired the 17-hand grey Thoroughbred as a
two-year-old ex-racehorse and brought him to the top of the sport.
He was only seven, and Bruce's backup for that event, when his
primary horse came up lame, thrusting the still-inexperienced Might
Tango into the spotlight. Their win, against great odds and extreme
heat, was compared to "a junior high school quarterback leading USC
to victory in the Rose Bowl" by Sports Illustrated.
Might Tango #3035,
"U.S. Equestrian Team Gift Set." Made from 1980 to 1993.
The most famous Chincoteague Pony ever was of course, Misty. The
epic tale Marguerite Henry wrote describing the wild herd and
mysterious, un-catchable mare she was born to was an award-winning
book read by every horse-loving kid. Misty also starred in her own
movie, went on tour with her filly Stormy, and performed at shows on
Chincoteague to the delight of visitors from around the globe. She
pretty much put Chincoteague on the map, and now the tiny island
hosts tens of thousands of tourists every year for Pony Penning
Misty #20, "Misty of
Chincoteague." Made from 1972 to 2006.
Twilight, a great-granddaughter of famous
Chincoteague Pony Stormy, was sired by a grandson of Bold Ruler.
With famous horses on both sides of her pedigree, and a book of her
own by Marguerite Henry, Misty's Twilight became the most famous
Chincoteague Pony of her generation. She found her calling in
Dressage, but also toured. Fun bit of trivia: Eleda (of Triple
Mountain Model Horses) was privileged to meet "Twi" and her first
foal Twister in 1984, when Twister was only a couple of months old.
They had come to attend Breyerfest, held that year at York, PA.
Misty's Twilight #470, "Misty's Twilight." Model made from 1991
Dancer, nicknamed The Grey Ghost, was the first
television star race horse. With tv becoming popular in the early
1950s, millions watched the two-year-old go undefeated in his nine
starts. His three-year-old year was a repeat performance, except for
the only loss of his career, which came in the Kentucky Derby. His
jockey was criticized for giving him a terrible ride, with one
person reportedly saying, "He took that colt everywhere on the track
except the ladies' room!" He went on to win the other two legs of
the Triple Crown, then was retired partway into his four-year-old
year due to a recurring foot injury. On May 31, 1954, his image
graced the cover of "Time" magazine. He became a very influential
stud and passed away in 1967 following surgical removal of a tumor
in his intestine.
Breyer Native Dancer
#5023, "Native Dancer." Model made from 1976 to 1994.
II is a handsome Andalusian stallion who is also listed
as a founding sire in the Spanish Norman Horse breed registry. This
handsome dapple grey was a special guest at BreyerFest 2004 and was
chosen as the event's Celebration Model. He is owned by Tracy and
Roni Vale of Cortijo Val Moor of Colorado Springs, Colorado.
Andalusian Stallion #710104,
"Nobel II." Made in 2004.
The bay Thoroughbred Orchidee, with rider Dirk Hafemeister,
representing Germany, was part of the Olympic Gold Medal Team in
Jumping in the 1988 games at Seoul. Breyer ran a tribute set to the
Gold Medalists for two years: 1989 and 1990.
Might Tango #703335.
"German Olympic Team." Made from 1989 to 1990.
Sara Moniet RSI: The magnificent Desert Arabian mare OT
Sara Moniet RSI is a three-time Drinkers of the Wind Cup endurance
champion. She won the cup in 2010, 2011, and again in 2012,
finishing all 31 starts, ending all but one in the top ten. Bred,
trained and ridden by Crockett Dumas of Outlaw Trail Ranch Arabians,
this is one pretty girl with a bright future!
Arabian Mare #1720, "OT
Sara Moniet RS." Made from 2014 to 2016.