Following the conclusion of the main horse trials dressage, the Sport Horse Breeding of Great Britain stud book organised a stallion parade of 9 of their graded stallions.
The stallions all paraded around the main ring together and then individually showed their basic paces in the dressage arena and then jumped over a fence in the adjoining area. There was only half an hour for the whole parade and so it was hard to watch each stallion both on the flat and over a fence, but there were certainly some interesting stallions for eventing breeders.
Harry Meade presented this 9yo French bred Anglo Arab, who was the 6 and 7 year old World Young Horse Champion at Lion D’Angers. Since joining Harry he has won 4 BE events and is now consisting Open Intermediates. He has been gelded but there is excellent frozen available. He certainly was incredibly relaxed about the whole parade, and showed himself very pleasingly. A slightly plain head and a workmanlike attitude meant he lacked a little of the presence of some of the stallions.
I was impressed with his balance and temperament and with his strong competition record he should be popular with mare owners. His sire Jaguar Mail was an Olympic show jumper himself, and carries valuable Thoroughbred blood through his own World Cup show jumping sire Hand In Glove and his damsire Laudanum. Jaguar Mail’s best son to date is probably the Anglo Arab European eventing champion fischerTakinou.
Tenareze’s dam Utopie Du Maury has produced another CIC eventer in Vinka’s, and is a full sister to the licensed stallion and CCI** eventer Devin Du Maury, the CCI** eventer Gangster Al Maury and another licensed stallion Atchoum Du Maury.
- Britannia’s Mail.
A second son of Jaguar Mail to be presented, this 8yo stallion has an even more famous dam. He is a son of Headley Britannia, the winner of Burghley, Badminton and Kentucky. This makes his dam sire the legendary eventing sire Jumbo, who has topped the BE sire rankings on a number of occasions. Having done the Burghley Young Event Horse Finals he then jumped 22 consecutive cross country clears. In 2016 he already has placings at Open Intermediate.
Another horse with a superb temperament, he is a very compact and short coupled horse. Not the biggest of movers but always very rhythmic and was happy to turn in close to his fences and looked very adjustable. He has 17 foals due this year.
- Cornetto King.
This son of leading show jumping sire Cornet Obolensky was a very different type of horse. Previously competed by the Whitakers he was known for his ‘strong character’ and was not as settled as the previous two entrants. However he showed a nice technique over his fences and was very tidy in front and used his shoulders well. His canter was very round and not as ground covering as you would look for in an eventer. Although many spectators may have wondered why a show jumper was being paraded at Badminton, there are a significant number of world class horses that combine pure jumping power crossed onto thoroughbred speed and stamina.
To breed a higher level eventer, Cornetto King would certainly want a mare with a high percentage of blood. His sire Cornet Obolensky is not known for his production of eventers, but his damsire Zeus carried a significant amount of anglo arab blood and was an important sire in both Germany and Holland.
- Langaller Starring Role.
This SHB(GB) grading champion is certainly an attractive horse with a harmonious frame. His paces were nice but he was a little sticky over the fences and perhaps a little green, with a technique that was a little flat. Although an 8yo, he has yet to process from Novice, and his record in the show jumping phase reflects what was seen on the day.
His sire Catherston Dazzler has produced a lot of good looking show horses, competed at Grand Prix dressage himself and has sired a number of very useful eventers including Olympic top ten Hyde Park Corner, European Young Riders team horse Leading Edge and 4 star competitors Midnight Dazzler and Dazzling Effects. The dam is a half sister to the very successful show hunter broodmare Euphoria and is by the Thoroughbred stallion I’m A Star who is most famous as the sire of Mary King’s Badminton winner Star Appeal.
- Wish Upon A Star.
This very attractive Dutch bred son of the legendary Trakehner stallion Gribaldi, really caught the eye. He has a very good walk, and ground covering paces with a bit more elasticity than the previous stallions. I also liked the angles through his hindquarter. Despite a busy stud career he has won at CIC** level (Barbury), Advanced, and has 258 BE points.
Gribaldi was not only a top level Grand Prix dressage horse himself but is sire of the European Champion Totilas, and many other Grand Prix horses, including the latest British sensation Atterupgaards Orthilia. Wish Upon A Star does carry some Thoroughbred blood through his Dutch dam, whose damline has produced a few decent show jumpers.
- Up With The Lark.
This 16 year old stallion is now based at Stanley Grange Stud and is attracting a lot of showing mares. He is certainly a good looking horse, with good flat bone and a very gentle and laid back temperament. He previously evented up to advanced level and was a Burghley Young Event Horse finalist. His paces have no knee action and highlight his Thoroughbred ancestry.
His sire Welton Apollo completed Badminton on three occasions and his dam Magical Lark was also an advanced eventer. She also produced the CCI*** competitor Merlots Magic.
This tall attractive son of dressage sensation Totilas, certainly had the biggest paces of all the stallions forward. The canter was very forward and loose through the shoulder, and the trot was really ground covering with good suspension. He had a scopey jump but the technique was a little weak. His rider did show him very well, really asking him to lengthen and move forward.
As an eventing sire, he would need to be used on a mare that had good Thoroughbred or Anglo Arab bloodlines to ensure the requisite gallop and stamina. Although he does have some Trakehner blood (grandsire Gribaldi), his dam was a Prix St George dressage horse who carried the jumping blood of Landadel and dressage blood through her sire Sion.
The Oldenburg stallion had a good frame and neck set and his type does indicate his Thoroughbred dam line. Champion of his performance test in Germany, he has competed up to Advanced Medium dressage since coming to the UK. He has covered some leading eventing mares such as Kings Temptress and Headley Britannia.
His sire Royal Diamond was known for passing on good riding horse abilities to his offspring and hails from the very successful R line established by his sire Rubinstein. Royaldik’s dam is a full sister to one of the most successful event sires ever – Heraldik (Butts Abraxxas, Butts Leon, Halunke and damsire of Mighty Magic).
- Chilli Morning
The biggest cheer of the day was reserved for last year’s Badminton winner and his rider William Fox-Pitt. The 16 year old stallion looked very fit and very at ease with the crowd. As well as being the most successful competitive eventing stallion in the world, he is already producing extremely high scoring youngstock at the BEF Futurity, and leading figures in the eventing world are using him on their mares (Paul Tapner, Vin Jones, Mary King).
Apparently he has some exciting offspring targeting Lion D’Angers this season, and he really should be on any serious eventing breeders short list.