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University of Missouri

Hope Springs

Super Bowl commercial’s star foal lives up the road.

clydesdales

Hope, a 7-month-old female Clydesdale who starred in a popular Budweiser Super Bowl commercial, lives near Mizzou outside Boonville, Mo. Photo by Nicholas Benner.

Like any comely TV starlet, Hope plays to the camera. She demurely bats her eyelashes from a distance. She inadvertently tousles her mane while offering either profile. She snorts. Hope is the 7-month-old Clydesdale featured in the popular Budweiser Super Bowl commercial about a trainer and his horse. She is one of about 80 Clydesdales living just up Interstate 70 from Mizzou at Warm Springs Ranch near Boonville, Mo. The 300-plus-acre facility opened in 2008 and breeds the iconic Clydesdales exclusively for the King of Beers. To join the Budweiser hitch, geldings must be at least 6 feet tall and 1,800 pounds with a bay coat, black mane and tail, four white stockings, and a blaze of white on the face. “They’re just like people,” says John Soto, ranch supervisor. “Every one of them has its own personality, and no two are alike.” Rob Foss, DVM ’81, and colleagues at Equine Medical Services in Columbia provide medical care in rare cases when ranch staff cannot. Warm Springs is the only Budweiser breeding facility in the U.S., and that kind of exclusivity is fine with Hope. She was born ready for her close-up. “She’s a spunky little filly,” Soto says.