During his time at stud the renowned leading event stallion, sired 45 advanced event horses (43 in the UK and two in America) including record breakers Headley Britannia the only mare to win three four-star events and Avebury who with Andrew Nicholson has won Burghley for the last three years – the only horse to have achieved such a feat.
Bred by the late Archie Smith-Maxwell, Jumbo was by the leading Registered Irish Draught sire Skippy out of a jumping mare by the thoroughbred Seven Bells and was acquired as a weanling from Malvern sales by Carolyn Bates of the Grafham Stud where he spent his life.
Jumbo competed in all three disciplines; with Andrew Nicholson he evented to advanced level winning the young horse trophy at Le Lions D’Angers as a seven-year-old and in 1992 was 15th at the Boekelo CCI3*; he competed in show jumping with William Funnell and in dressage with Lizzie Murray with who he won the Spillers Combined Training Championship at Blenheim in 1997.
He first covered mares as a four-year-old and from the start produced superior event horses; Liberty Lane (1988) from his very first crop competed to advanced level with Frances Hooper and Cartoon Town (1989) with Vanessa Allen. Cartoon Town, an SHB(GB) Head Studbook mare has since bred several event horses by the SHB(GB) stallion Mill Law. He currently has 389 offspring registered with SHB(GB) alone.
The success of his many offspring means that Jumbo is the leading ‘all time sire’ with British Eventing (BE) as well as the BE leading ‘all time sire’ of competition mares. He currently has around 50 offspring affiliated with BE, including Avebury, Allercombe Ellie with Izzy Taylor the winner of the CCI3* at Tattersalls last year and Mr Chunky a member of last year’s British Nations Cup team with Lucy Wiegersma.
He is also the highest ranked British-bred stallion in the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horse eventing sire rankings, in sixth place. He has nine graded sons standing in the UK, one in America, one in Australia and one in South Africa. His sons Jetset (1995), Med Night Mahout (1996) Free Spirit (2000) and Burfas Bugaboo (2009) are all graded with SHB(GB) as is Headley Britannia’s son Britannia’s Mail (by Jaguar Mail 2008) .
“I bought him just because I liked his movement and not because I wanted a stallion,” said Carolyn. “But he turned out to be my once in a lifetime horse and has been a huge part of my life and I am immensely proud and privileged to have owned him.”