"Grasshopper was neither very big nor very handsome, but such was his toughness, mentally and physically, that he never started an international event in which he was not expected to produce the fastest time cross-country... I don't expect ever to see another horse like him." Michael O. Page.
The Grasshopper is one of only five horses in the history of the sport to have competed in six or more CCIO's. He shares that honor with one U.S. horse, Kilkenny, and 3 British horses, The Poacher, Random Light and Priceless.
The Grasshopper: Bred in County Wicklow, Ireland, Copper Coin, as The Grasshopper was then called, was purchased by Col. Joe Dudgeon whose son, Ian, rode him at the 1956 Olympic Games in Stockholm, Sweden. He had a clean cross-country but was eliminated for missing a flag.
Standing only 15.1 hands, this brave little horse was by Tutor out of a Connemara pony mare. After the Games, he was sold to Mrs. John Galvin and was shipped to the family ranch in Santa Barbara, CA. Two years later, the USET Three-Day Team, including Michael Page, was invited to train at the Galvin ranch. The Grasshopper was assigned to Michael to ride and thus began the career of one of the most successful combinations ever. An individual gold and team silver medal at the 1959 Pan American Games in Chicago was backed up by a second individual gold and team gold in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
In Rome in 1960, The Grasshopper finished 17th and in 1964 in Tokyo, at the age of 16, he finished fourth individually and was on the U.S. silver medal team.
The Grasshopper's outstanding record stands as follows:
1955 European Championships -- Penelope Moreton 1956 Olympic Games -- Ian Dudgeon 1959 Pan American Games -- Michael Page 1960 Olympic Games -- Michael Page 1963 Pan American Games -- Michael Page 1964 Olympic Games -- Michael Page