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Glock Pays High Price In Hope Of Olympic Gold

Austrian gun magnate Gaston Glock and his horse mad wife Kathrin have spent 11 million EUR (9 million GBP) on buying up an Olympic silver medal-winning show jumping horse in an online auction.

Gaston Glock, 84, who had a stroke in 2008 had married his former nurse Kathrin Tschikof, 31, after he divorced his previous wife Helga Glock, 71, in 2011. He then backed his new wife in setting up the Glock Horse Performance Centre close to their home in the state of Carinthia.

The couple often stage high-profile events linked to the centre which include a star line-up of VIP guests but the purchase of the horse, called London, is part of their ambition of winning an Olympic medal for their stables at the next Olympic Games taking place in Rio de Janeiro, in Brazil, in 2016.

The 12-year-old horse competed at London 2012 with Dutch rider Gerco Schroeder, 35, and was among a group of 32 show jumpers for sale in an online auction after a Dutch court ruled last month (5 March) that the financial services company Rabobank had a right to collect assets from the bankrupt owner, Eurocommerce Stables.

It is expected that the Glocks will be asking Schroeder to once again ride the horse at Rio de Janeiro and the sale price reportedly includes a contract with the rider.

Although the total price for all the horses was 11,126,151 EUR (9,172,009 GBP), which is thought to be slightly less than expected, the Glock's had made a final bid of 8.6 million EUR (7 million GBP) for London which was more than twice what the animal had been expected to fetch. Together with taxes and fees, the amount the Glocks paid added up to 11 million EUR.

The sale of the horse is one of the most expensive ever and follows a similar sale made last September when Dutch horse breeder Jan Tops, founder of the Global Champions Tour, also paid a Swiss man 11 million EUR for the 10-year-old horse Palloubet d'Halong.

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