The stallion classes, even the younger ones, invariably arouse greater emotions than the mare classes, because they are the hope for breeding progress, and we hope to see future sires in them. Although at this year’s Arabian Peninsula Horse Show Qatari breeders brought their best in large numbers, the UAE (represented by Dubai Stud) would not let themselves be walked all over.
The 2 year old stallions class was won by D K’Hailan by Royal Colors, the only one of a different color, black among a field of grey stallions. In the 3-year-olds the winner was from Qatar (all stallions in the class were owned by Qatar), but bred in Italy by Gulia Sorentino. Most of the stallions shown today, although “typey” and generally eye-catching, unfortunately lose much in movement, which is hardly visible in them.
We must believe the judges that they see and know more than can be seen. After all, judges cannot be wrong. A satisfactory presentation is rare. Stallions spin circles around the presenters, mainly in gallop shortened by the limited length of the rope. Although there is no score for gallop, they are happy to use it in the ring. Only sometimes one can see fragments of trot in a straight line, which makes it possible to assess the correctness of gaits, but also the balance and reliable work performed by the presenter. Too many horses at the show have poor movement and too few are properly built, despite the fact that they cannot be denied a distinct Arabian type.
After the stallions came the senior mare classes. In the 4-6 year old class, two mares distinguished themselves with movement; Shahrazad Al Waab by Fares Al Rayyan, owned by Abdulla Saed MA Al Hajri from Qatar, which turned out to be victorious thanks to a largely good, active trot, but also the only chestnut (with a clear lack of harmony in the build of the body) in the group; Asmaa Juhayna by Nadeed Al Naif bred and owned by Abdulhadi Mana Al-Hajri, both from Qatar.
In general, mares made a better impression than their peer stallions, presenting a type of noble horse that its lovers can associate with the lightness of desert sands. Extremely feminine, unfortunately most of them cannot impress with their movement. Whether these beautiful mares could traverse the vastness of this desert with their gait and not get stuck in the sand up to their cannon bone is another matter. However, just like the phenotype – it is the Egyptian type that sets the standard of the Arabian horse’s beauty today, so the movement may be a matter of accepted standards and the horse’s purpose. Therefore, since the presented horses are not used, it is easy to look over the wrong movement. Therefore, “chasing” horses during the show on a rope becomes a visible formality. Therefore, there is also room for reflection on Polish breeding and its show direction. Maybe Polish breeding tries to chase the “Egyptian” one, which may seem not only difficult in view of the sublime beauty of these horses, which is pointless, at the same time squandering its own identity and remnants of utilitarian possibilities. Contemporary shows lead to diminishing the importance of movement, which in the judges’ opinions is all too visible and probably not a way to make progress in Polish breeding, for which movement and bravery was the most important thing for centuries. The charm of these animals is mainly due to movement that makes the audience rise up during many major world shows.