Del­fina a lady of lake

Weekend Gold Coast Bulletin - - NEWS - MATTHEW BENNS ED­I­TOR-AT-LARGE

IT’S not ev­ery day a beau­ti­ful woman in a red ball gown rides a horse bare back into a lake – but hey, funny things hap­pen on the Gold Coast.

Ar­gen­tinian busi­ness­woman and model Del­fina Blaquier did not hes­i­tate, she hopped bare­back onto the five-yearold for­mer race­horse and rode it straight into the wa­ter.

“I am a very aquatic per­son and a horse lover so to be able to swim with a horse is like a gift from heaven to me,” said the 37-year-old for­mer world cham­pion high jumper and pho­tog­ra­pher.

Blaquier is in Aus­tralia with polo star hus­band Na­cho Figueras for The Star Gold Coast Magic Mil­lions Car­ni­val which cul­mi­nates with a $10 mil­lion race day to­day.

Also at­tend­ing will be the Queen’s grand­daugh­ter Zara Tin­dall and for­mer English rugby in­ter­na­tional hus­band Mike and re­tired NRL leg­end Billy Slater and wife Nicole, who sold the first year­ling from their new sta­bles at the Magic Mil­lions year­ling sales yes­ter­day.

Un­like the world class jock­eys who will be rid­ing to­day, Blaquier put for­mer race­horse Glonass through a dif­fer­ent kind of ex­er­cise. “He wanted to go into the wa­ter and I could to­tally feel that he was happy there,” she said.

Although the swim­ming “made him su­per, su­per tired be­cause it is so much ex­er­cise for him”.

“This re­minds me of when we were lit­tle chil­dren and we would all take our ponies down to the river to swim. I love swim­ming with horses,’’ she said.

Mean­while Slater’s ca­reer as a race­horse breeder got off to a fly­ing start when his first colt sailed past the re­serve and sold for $180,000.

Leg­endary trainer Gai Water­house, for whom Slater rode track­work as a teenager be­fore tak­ing up rugby league, was in the bid­ding for the bay colt by Wand­jina out of Inishowen but was pipped by Vic­to­rian trainer Ciaron Ma­her.

Del­fina Blaquier

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