Tennessee Walking horse industry mourns the passing of World Grand Champion He’s Putting On The RitzAug 15th, 2016 | By The Scoop | Category: News, Obituaries
Shelbyville, Tenn.– Wednesday August 3, 2016 one of the all time greats and multi-World and World Grand Champion, He’s Putting On The Ritz passed away in his sleep at the age of 25. Ritz was standing at stud at Rising Star Ranch located in Shelbyville, Tennessee. Ritz was kept under private treaty for his stud fees; however, he had since been retired from breeding. Owned by Five Star Farms at the time of his death, he was always a crowd favorite. Ritz was known as the Secretariat of the Tennessee Walking Horses. Early in Ritz’s career he was shown by the legendary Billy Gray. This team claimed the title of Two-Year-Old World Grand Champion. Billy and Tim Gray continued Ritz’s winning ways as a Three-Year-Old as he remained undefeated that year. Later in his career, the very talented Sammy Day directed this powerhouse to the title of World Grand Champion in front of a record breaking 30, 081 people at the 1996 Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration. They were welcomed to the ring by a standing ovation and exited as the 1996 World Grand Champion in standing ovation style as well. Ritz will leave his legacy to the industry through his many proven offspring. He will surely be missed by the industry, his fans that visited him at Rising Star and all who were lucky enough to have known him.