Dressage Mare Brentina Becomes a Mother

Debbie McDonald's famous dressage mare, Brentina, finally became a mother in April, when her colt by Damsey was born to a surrogate mare.

Brentina’s baby by Damsey |

May 2, 2010 — The beloved dressage horse, Brentina, finally became a mother in April, though she wasn’t on the scene for the birth of her first foal.

The colt by Damsey was carried by a surrogate mare while Brentina took it easy. The black Hanoverian foal doesn’t seem to have much in common physically with his chestnut mom at first glance, but Brentina’s devoted rider, Debbie McDonald, noted, “His ears look like they could be hers.”

Brentina’s foal explores the outdoors with his surrogate mom. |

She added, “I think he is so handsome.” But Debbie is eating her heart out because she hasn’t had a chance to see the baby in person. She’s in Germany with her protege, Adrienne Lyle, making her first competitive trip to Europe. Adrienne did well in a show in Hagen, earning 70 percent or more from three of four judges for her ride on Wizard in the Grand Prix Special, where she just missed 70 percent overall.

There will be another Brentina baby on the ground soon. A surrogate is expecting Brentina’s second foal, by Leslie Morse’s accomplished stallion, Kingston.

Brentina’s foal and his surrogate mom |

Brentina was one of the most consistent U.S. dressage horses during a long and storied career. Highlights including double gold in the 1999 Pan American Games, victory in the World Cup finals, a team silver in the 2002 World Equestrian Games and team bronze medals in the 2004 Olympics and 2006 World Equestrian Games. She retired at the 2009 World Cup finals as an admiring crowd gave her a heartfelt send-off.

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