One championship, one reserve championship and 5 Top Fives for Poland (plus one more for a horse of Polish breeding, but foreign property) – such are the results of this year’s European Championships in Moorsele.
The Sunday competitions, similar to Saturday’s, were commenced by a Polish mare. This class – of 4-5 year old mares, with 9 contestants – belonged without question to Poland! Right after the first performing mare, Pernacja (Ekstern – Perturbacja/Eukaliptus) bred and owned by Falborek Arabians who received 89,3 points, entered Pianissima (Gazal Al Shaqab – Pianosa/Eukaliptus). She set, as always, an unobtainable standard for her rivals: 10 x “20” and a final score of 94,2! Pianissima has got her fans used to such high marks, so of course nobody was surprised. Sadly though, being just the second competitor of that day, she presented herself in front of nearly empty stands. A couple of minutes past 9:00 am the majority of the tables were also not filled. Responsible for this was surely the “Arabian night”, the Saturday evening show prepared by the organizers in the circus tent… And so the highest score of the championships was awarded in the presence of very humble applause. Although the arena did fill up later with spectators, Arabian followers who remember the recent competition from Aachen lacked the vivid reaction of the public. It seems that the All Nations Cup in Aachen draws more “regular” Arabian horse lovers, while the European Championships, held in the partly secluded Moorsele, are more an event of the breeders and owners. And these cheer their own horses, reacting less spontaneously to the performance of other steeds.
The second and third places also went to Poland, shared respectively by Michałów mares: Pistoria (Gazal Al Shaqab – Palmira/Monogramm) – 92,5 and Norma (Gazal Al Shaqab – Nina/Monogramm) – 92,1. Behind them placed the daughter of Marwan Al Shaqab – Abha Myra (bred by Marieta Salas of Spain, owned by Qatar) and the French Maya des Alpes by Simeon Sadik. This class was to also feature another Gazal daughter – Michałów’s Ejrene (out of Emocja/Monogramm), but unfortunately an unlucky fall on the eve of the show excluded her from the contest. Luckily it was nothing serious and hopefully she will recover quickly.
In the next class of 6-7 year old mares, which featured five contestants, Poland was represented by one mare – the Michałów-bred Egzyna (Eldon – Elganda/Monogramm), owned by Janusz Ryżkowski. Egzyna, not shown internationally up to now, was a large unknown. Prepared and presented by Marek Demczuk she brought a lot of joy to her owners, placing second in class with a score of 91,1! According to some spectators she deserved to win, as she unveiled great movement, a trait lacked by the winner, Fer Mia (JK Nasser – Martinique/Ansata Sinan), bred by Yeguada Ferrero of Spain and owned by Dubai Stud. Fer Mia, though receiving also lesser marks for a strongly sloping body, made up for it with type, as well as head and neck (five “20s”), which allowed her to end the class with a score of 92 points.
This class also featured a French bred and owned mare, but of pure Polish origin – Grenadyne (Ekstern – Grenlandia/Eukaliptus) of Emma Maxwell. She was evaluated at 89 points, which gave her fourth place.
When it comes to the senior mares classes above the age of 8, it is almost certain that first of all we will see solely grey horses and second – that Polish mares will find themselves in the lead, with very high marks. And so was the case this time. Among the 8-10 year old mares (and there were 4 of these) triumphed Michałów’s Emesa (Laheeb – Etopka/Eukaliptus) – 93,2, including four “20s” for type, as well as head and neck, before Białka’s Emika (Eldon – Emoza/Ernal) – 91,6, including 3 x ”20” for movement. The predictability of the results repeated itself again in the mares’ class of 11 year olds and above (also 4 contestants). The winner was Emanda (Ecaho – Emanacja/Eukaliptus), bred and owned by Michałów Stud – 93,7, including 4 x “20” for type and movement. Behind her placed her traditional rival from Dubai, the German-bred Martinique (Ansata Sinan – Marratxi/Gual Moghar) – 93,3, including four “20s” for type, head and neck and movement. This way Emanda got equal for this year’s Aachen show, where Martinique was first (but finally it was Martinique who was chosen Reserve Champion). Third place was secured by Białka’s Euskara (Ararat – Euglena/Banat) of Belgian property, with a score of 90,9, including “20” for type.
After the mares the arena was entered by the stallions. In the 4-5 year olds class Michałów’s Drabant (Gazal Al Shaqab – Demona/Monogramm), who already in Aachen tread on the heels of such highly advertised horses as Marajj, made the most of his performance. In Moorsele nobody took the victory away from him. He turned out to be the best from among the group of 9 horses, with a score of 91,3 (including two “20s” for movement). Of course the Polish onlookers counted on an entire row of “20s” for this trait, but this time the judges were more thrifty. Behind Drabant placed the German-bred, but British-owned FS Ronaldo by Kubinec (90,9) and the German Al Milan, son of Al Lahab (90,8). This class also saw Etnodrons Psyche (Padrons Psyche – Etnografia/Aloes), bred and owned by Klwaty Stud (of Stanisław and Paweł Redestowicz), who did not repeat the high marks from Aachen, receiving “only” 89,4 points. This gave him sixth place.
Five 6-7 year old horses presented themselves impressively, scoring great marks. First to be shown was Janów’s Poganin (Laheeb – Pohulanka/Pepton) and this time no one could accuse him of a performance below expectations. Poganin, presented by Piotr Dwojak, made a very good impression, for which he received 92,2 points, including a “20” for movement. He was bested by another Polish representative – Esparto (Ekstern – Ekspozycja/Eukaliptus), bred and owned by Michałów Stud, though by just a tenth of a point. However none of them could equal with Nijem Ibn Eternity VI (Eternity Ibn Navarrone – Naravna/Narav Ibn Aswan) of Belgian breeding and Saudi property. This stallion was evaluated almost as high as Pianissima, as he received 94 points, including as much as eight “20s”: for type, head and neck and movement. It was a wonderful performance and fully deserving victory. High marks could also be boasted by Valerio Ibn Eternity, another son of Eternity Ibn Navarrone, who with two “20s” (for type and movement) received 91,8 points. He later also became the recipient of Best Belgian Contestant of the show.
The 8-10 year olds stallions class consisted of seven rivals. And once again Polish breeding proved the best. Surprisingly victorious by “a nose” was Edin (Laheeb – Edina/Egon), sold from Michałów to France (91,8). Behind him placed the known from his sire duties in Poland HS Etiquette (Simeon Sadik – Etenta/Monogramm), bred and owned by Halsdon Arabians (91,7). Performing in this class Michałów’s Emiliusz (Laheeb – Emocja/Monogramm) of Belgian property, was fourth (90), while Eternal bearing a Polish pedigree (Ekstern – Elegantkah/Gwizd), of Belgian breeding and Dutch property, found himself outside the Top Five.
In the final class, among the four 11 year old and above stallions, Polish breeding was represented only by Emrod (Emigrant – Empressa/Probat) being currently of Danish property (90,5). He placed second, behind Khidar by Ansata Sinan (Belgium), who during the absence of Imperial Baarez finally reached for first place in class (90,3, including a “20” for type, but poor marks for movement).
The championships brought the Poles a lot of satisfaction. 15 fillies entered the arena in hopes of grabbing the titles of champion and reserve champion, including 6 Polish ones (among them National Champion Palabra and Reserve Champion Eksterna). Two of them made it into the Top Five: Altamira and Eksterna, despite her tripping and falling during the presentation. Third place went to F.M. Gloriaa, the title of Reserve was awarded to Jumilla, while the Champion – to the favorite of this event, Abha Palma, the recent Reserve Champion from Aachen.
After a moment Kabsztad received his first international title, becoming Reserve Champion Stallion! In the lot of 10 evaluated colts were two Polish ones (the national junior champion Kabsztad and reserve – Lord Bey Shah). The highest trophy was awarded to the Italian Ali Moniscione, who repeated his success from Aachen. The Top Five also included: Roe Lateef, Aja Justified and Orion OS.
The senior mares championships were really just a formality – it was only interesting to see which of the remaining six Polish mares, who qualified to the championships beside Pianissima (among 10 contestants of the finals), would make it into the Top Five. This was achieved by Emanda and Emesa. Abha Myra was third, while Martinique became Reserve Champion. Pianissima was named Champion unanimously, as well as receiving the award for the highest scored horse of the show.
Four Polish-bred stallions appeared among the 11 horses who qualified for the championships. Unfortunately Drabant did not gain any title, but the Top Five did feature Esparto and Edin (at third spot). Between them placed HS Etiquette. The Reserve Champion title was secured by Khidar, while the Champion honors went to – without surprise – Nijem Ibn Eternity.
„I think that the quality of the horses is ever increasing”, Christine Jamar, the organizer of the European Championships, told polskiearaby.pl. “Of course the question always remains to what degree are these horses still horses… For me a true horse is such which can be ridden, while here we sometimes have some doubts. But at the same time it is a wonderful experience to be able to witness so much beauty and elegance. I would also like to stress that from year to year the horses are better prepared for their presentations. There is nothing wrong in the fact that breeders put beauty first – but we should not forget that a horse should remain a horse.”
As a final note it should be added that while two years ago the stands saw few Poles, then this time the Polish language was almost as commonly heard as the international show-dominating English. More and more Polish breeders visit foreign shows – together with their horses, not fearing the tough competition. This is surely a good sign for Polish private breeding, because without stepping out of our own backyard it is hard to make a step forward.
Junior Champion Mare
Abha Palma (Marwan Al Shaqab – Abha Gazali/El Perfecto), bred by Ganaderia Ses Planes, Spain, owned by Al-Mohamadia-Stud, Saudi Arabia
Junior Reserve Champion Mare
Jumilla (Thee Apprentice – Artemis/Borneo), bred by Moell & Moelle & Dolfe, Sweden, owned by Dubai Stud
Junior Champion Stallion
Ali Moniscione (Psytadel – Alianna Moniscione/Focus Highlander), bred and owned by Azienda Agricola Giancarlo Buzzi, Italy
Junior Reserve Champion Stallion
Kabsztad (Poganin – Kwestura/Monogramm), bred and owned by Michałów Stud, Poland
Senior Champion Mare
Pianissima (Gazal Al Shaqab – Pianosa/Eukaliptus), bred and owned by Janów Podlaski Stud, Poland
Senior Reserve Champion Mare
Martinique (Ansata Sinan – Marratxi/Gual Moghar), bred by Susanne Reiter, Germany, owned by Dubai Stud
Senior Champion Stalion
Nijem Ibn Eternity (Eternity Ibn Navarrone-D – Naravna/Narav Ibn Aswan), bred by M. Smits, Belgium, owned by Prince Khaled Bin Sultan Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud, Saudi Arabia
Senior Reserve Champion Stallion
Khidar (Ansata Sinan – Elizja/Esta-Ghalil), bred by R. Verrijdt, Belgium, owned by Khidar Partnership
You will find the coverage of the first day of the competition at the European Championships here:
Photo gallery by Erwin Escher: Polish bred horses in Moorsele 2008