Gillian Rolton, Australian Equestrian Olympian


Gillian Rolton, an Australian equestrian, died  Nov. 18, 2017 at hospice in her native Adelaide, South Australia; she was 61. The Australian Olympic Committee said the cause was endometrial cancer, a type of cancer that begins in the uterine lining. This is unfortunately suggested by Uranus in the 5th house, or the dissolving of the womb.

A Dinky Die Ozzie

Rolton had won an Olympic gold medal four years earlier at the Summer Games in Barcelona aboard Peppermint Grove (better known as Fred or Freddy) — the first Australian horsewoman to do so. She returned with the horse to Atlanta for a three-day competition featuring dressage, cross-country and show jumping event.

The national sport colours of Australia are green and gold.

In cross-country, an endurance test for both horse & rider, Rolton was confident of her early progress. But at the five-minute mark, Freddy’s hind legs slipped on gravel as he made a turn, and he rolled over her.

“That’s where I broke my collarbone and ribs, he went sliding and I went splat.”

Rolton told The Horse magazine in 2010.

A spectator grabbed Freddy, and someone else helped Rolton back astride. They galloped up a hill hoping to make up for lost time, but as they came to a water jump, Rolton realized that her left arm, which had become difficult to move because of her broken collarbone, lacked the strength to control Freddy, and she fell into the water; she remounted once again.

Rolton said instinct had compelled her to continue despite her falls and injuries, but there was also a practical reason to keep going: as the third of four cross-country riders for Australia, she needed to post a score in case something kept the rider who followed her, Andrew Hoy, from completing his ride. Ironically she was not needed, her fellow riders had no problems and secured the gold medal. The United States took silver.

Andrew Hoy

She was one of eight Australian Olympic champions to carry their country’s flag in Atlanta’s Olympic opening ceremony, because she did not qualify. In 2000, she was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame.

A true blue Ozzie

Gillian has a lot of Noel Tyl’s Quindeciles which he says is an unrelenting aspect. See hers between the Sun and Saturn — unrelenting will against falls, broken bones and great odds, and again with the Sun and Neptune highlighting her unrelenting desire for horses and then being exceptional with them.

Gillian England was born in Adelaide, South Australia, on May 3, 1956. Her father, Lloyd, was a builder, and her mother, the former Esme Fraser, a bookkeeper. There is no time around for Gillian, so we have rectified her to 10 Pisces and the Sabian symbol of “a rider in the clouds,” illustrating her desire to “transcend normal limitations by creating new realities of self”. She is a see-saw temperament type, half on the land and half above.

As a girl, Gillian excelled at swimming, a common trait for Pisces rising, but wanted a horse, an animal ruled by Pisces’s Lord Neptune and found on her 8th-9th cusp at 29 Libra. Her the emblem is “humanity seeking to span its knowledge,” showing horse riding was something dangerous but fulfilled her desire to expand her horizons and break away from stereotypes.

“Mum and Dad didn’t have any background with horses, apart from what they bet on at the horse track.”

“Free Rein” (2001) her autobiography.
Rolton completing her cross-country course with a broken collarbone after falling off her horse at the 1996 Summer Olympics in Atlanta. CreditEquestrian Australia

After retiring from competitive riding, she was active in equestrian sport coaching young equestrians, and a juror at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. She is survived by her husband, Greg, and half brother, John.

You may download her chart here: Gillian.pdf if you would like to add to our essay please do so in the comments. Thanks for your support.

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