On the weekend 7th–8th November an event called ‘The European Championship’, was held in Verona (Italy). The show was organized in a European town indeed, so the name wasn’t groundless at all. Besides, although all the four Gold Medals were won by horses from the Middle East, the European horses, not only those owned by the hosts, won quite a lot titles (Silver Medals went to Italy, Spain, Saudi Arabia and Great Britain, Bronze – to Belgium, Italy and Poland, while the Top Five to the Middle East, France, Sweden and Italy). The problem of non-European-owned horses was easily solved by registering horses bought by Middle Eastern studs in European countries (where they are being trained).
The Verona Show has definitely one huge advantage over the events held in other places – the stands are packed with audience! An enormous local patriotism can be seen – the Italian-bred and owned horses, or even those trained in Italy, are strongly applauded. A storm of applause is also given to weaker horses. The foreign stars, even the greatest ones, were presented in an absolute silence (if we omit the efforts of teams that were ‘frightening’ them). Neither the audience, nor the judges, was impressed by the Polish horses. However, we must notice, that their poorer shape must have been caused by a very long journey and a drastic change of climate – in Poland the temperature is currently around 0 C., while in Verona the temperature was about 13 C.
The Polish team was quite numerous – 26 horses (23 had to come from Poland, while three, bred/owned by Chrcynno-Palace stud, arrived from Johanna Ullström’s training center in Belgium). We could see a couple of Polish-bred horses, owned by foreigners, including Kabsztad, leased by Atbah Stud, Faustyna, Kwestura and Girlan-Bey. Among the horses representing Poland Emandoria (awarded with the Bronze Medal) was the most successful one. The Polish breeding was awarded with the highest laurels for Kwestura (owned by Ajman Stud). Moreover, the Top 5 titles were won by Kabsztad and Girlan-Bey, while Psyche Victoria won the three-year-old mares class. Psyche Kreuza, Espinezja, Sefora, Georgia and Poganin also entered the championship, however, no trophies were won by them.
Before looking at the class rivalry, it shall be noted that, logistically, Verona is a difficult show. The organizers’ requirements include: the Coggins’s test, the civil liability insurance, and also – due to the huge Fieracavalli fair – longer, than usual, presence of horses at the event. Those Polish horses that didn’t arrive in Verona on Wednesday, had enormous problems to enter the fair place. Those that ended their performance, couldn’t leave before the event ended, which occurred on Sunday evening. This meant a longer stay, bigger costs and more exhausting return journey during the night. Troubles for owners couldn’t have been avoided. Not everyone could enter the show, despite of having booked a VIP table. The organizers didn’t manage sending the tickets in advance, and the information put on the gates was not enough, so entering the fair was quite a challenge. After facing all those difficulties some guests found out that the organizers had forgotten about their table… Fortunately, extra tables were found soon.
Despite of an interesting list of sponsors (the majority were the Middle Eastern studs) the budget of the event must have been very tight, as rather tasteless coffee and tea were served in plastic mugs by quite impolite waiters who were even throwing sugar or agitator on the table. Of course, tasty beverages, cups, or a polite service mean some extra costs. However, these must be first points on the list of expenses to be crossed out by the organizers in case of some sudden problems with closure of the budget. That’s why everyone rather understood those shortcomings or left the acrid comments for themselves.
The show began on Saturday punctually, in accordance with the program – at 9:15 AM. The first class, yearling fillies, was not divided into two groups, although 20 participants took part (including five WH Justice daughters, four – Ajman Moniscione’s and two – Ekstern’s). The domination of WH Justice’s offspring (the stallion is owned by Italians) in younger classes is, without any doubt, very clear and this fashion didn’t pass. The first Polish mare that entered the ring was Gadnes (Psytadel – Gracea/Etogram) – owned/bred by Mała Wieś Stud – she moved in a nice way and she received a full row of ’19s’ for this feature. The final result, 422 points (88,4) allowed her to take the 11th place in the stake. Immediately after her performance El Piatzolla (WH Justice – Enya/Ekstern), owned/bred by Z.H.P. Strusinianka Stud, went out, however, her performance was less impressive than during the previous shows. The total result of 441 points (88) gave her the 13th position. Another Polish filly, Parmana (Al Maraam – Palmira/Monogramm), owned/bred by Michałów State Stud, became nervous and didn’t want to stand. She made it up with the body (she even scored a ‘19’) and came 9th with the grade of 443 (88,6). Then we could see Ekspiracja (WH Justice – Eklezja/Monogramm), bred by Lech Błaszczyk, owned by Krzysztof Falba. 439 points (87,8)
gave her just the 15th place. The Michałów-bred Wieża Róż (Ekstern – Wieża Babel/Laheeb) did a lot better than her predecessors – she scored 450 points (90) and won the 6th position. Psyche Kreuza (Ekstern – Pallas-Atena/Ecaho), owned/bred by Chrcynno-Palace stud, was the one that gave the best performance. More than one Middle Eastern owner would like to have that splendid filly in his stable, however her breeders do not negotiate her sale. Psyche Kreuza (the full sister of the three-year-old Psyche Victoria), Best in Show in Białka and the Junior Mares Reserve Champion of the National Janów Podlaski Show, showed her excellent movement, awarded by judges with two ‘20s’ and received a final grade of 455 points (91), which gave her the second place in the class – behind a strongly applauded Italian Alma Al Tiglio (Ajman Moniscione – Amanda Al Tiglio/Shamilah Masai Mara), bred by Azienda Agricola Il Tiglio, owned by Giancarlo Buzzi; the filly received 461 points (including eight ‘20s’! – with the average of 92,2 points). We shall admit that the filly is full of grace, and she stands in a very nice way (as we can remember, she also won her class in Aachen, however, during the All Nations Cup the classes that had many participants were divided). The third one was also an Italian Turchiya MPE by WH Justice, fourth came a Qatar Khansa Al Shaqab by Marwan Al Shaqab, fifth – VA Rose of Alija by Ajman Moniscione, from Dubai. The whole five entered the championship (the amount of horses in the finals depended on the amount of horses in the class).
After the fillies, nine colts performed (including three WH Justice sons). The only Polish accent was the Marajj son Marjan Albidayer out of Pustynna Droga/Laheeb, bred by Albidayer Stud (and owned by a syndicate registered in Germany). He scored 447 points and won the third place, after the Spanish Shanghai E.A. (WH Justice – Salymah E.A/Khidar) – who ‘earned’ 456 points, including four ‘20s’ for type and head and neck, however the grades for his movement were lower (just ‘18s’) – and the French Fahim Ishane OS (Ajman Moniscione – Praetoria/Kubinec), who scored 450 points. Four horses entered the championship, so, the fourth one was the Italian Fluke by WH Justice. However, only three of them appeared at the ring on Sunday, because Marjan Albidayer has been withdrawn.
Another class, the two-year-old fillies, was also an exceptionally numerous one. There were 19 rivals (including six WH Justice daughters). The first Polish participant was Padova (Galba – Palanga/Ekstern), bred/owned by Michałów State Stud. Unfortunately, we saw her in a better shape – this time she showed no fire, scoring 439 points and taking just the 15th position. Soon began the performance of her stud mate El Saghira (Galba – Emira/Laheeb), who proved that she knew how to move – four out of five judges noticed that (‘19s’), while one must’ve turned around (it was Mohammed Machmoum), because he gave her just a ‘17’. However, a better movement (although the final result was identical as Padova’s), gave her the 14th position. The next one that entered the ring was Palabra (Enzo – Palmeta/Ecaho), owned/bred by Janów Podlaski State Stud – her result of 446 points gave her the 9th place in the class. Another Polish representative, Chaos Persefona (Poganin – Ceres/Ganges), owned/bred by Chrcynno-Palace Stud, got a higher, 7th position, with the
final note of 447 points. Bajaderka (Złocień – Bagatela/Pesal), bred by Agricola Farm, owned by L-Arabians, also took part in the show, taking the 13th place, with the final grade of 441 points. So from this class there wasn’t any Polish horse that entered the championship. Five fillies were successful. The class was won, with a fantastic score, by Juwanda OS (WH Justice – Shak Lavanda/ZT Shakfantasy), bred by Gestüt Osterhof from Germany, owned by Dubai Stud – 466 points, including eight ‘20s’! The second place went to F.M. Gloriaa, also by WH Justice, out of Psity of Angels/Psytadel, Belgian bred and owned (465 points, including two whole rows of ‘20s’ for type and for head and neck!). Third came Baila de Djoon OS (Ajman Moniscione – Shak Shakira/ZT Shakfantasy), bred by Gestüt Osterhof, owned by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Saud Al Qasimi (UAE) – 463 points, including three ‘20s’, fourth – Fedora RG, another WH Justice daughter, out of Psyches Angel/Hadidi, Italian-bred, Saudi-property – 457 points, with three ‘20s’ for head and neck.
Poland didn’t have any representative among the two-year-old colts (just six rivals performed). Only two horses entered the championship: the class winner Abha Qatar (Marwan Al Shaqab – ZT Ludjkalba/Ludjin El Jamaal), bred by Yeguada Ses Planes (Spain), owned by the Saudi (Al Mohamadia), who also received a very high score – 464 points, including six ‘20s’ for type and head and neck, as well as HDB Sihr Ibn Massai (Massai Ibn Marenga – Mayana/BJ Thee Mustafa), German-bred, owned by Darius Arabians from Germany and Gianpaolo Gubbiotti from Italy. The colt, despite of a fall on the ring, received 454 points (including three ‘20s’ for head and neck). After the championship he immediately left to Poland, as he is leased by the Grabów nad Pilicą stud. Third in the stake, Ali Moniscione out of Psytadel, from Italy, despite of receiving a double ‘20’ and the final grade of 452 points, didn’t enter the championship.
There were eight three-year-old mares, including two from Poland. And both entered the championship! Psyche Victoria (Ekstern – Pallas-Atena/Ecaho), owned/bred by Chrcynno-Palace Stud, (456 points, including a ‘20’ for movement) won the first place, while Espinezja (Psytadel – Entaga/Ganges), bred by Leszek Jarmuż, owned by Falborek Arabians, scored 448 points and went third. Second position went to Abha Al Shaqab (Abha Fadil – Abha Galati/El Perfecto), bred by Ses Planes (Spain), owned by Al Shaqab Stud from Qatar (449 points). Psyche Victoria had a great advantage over her rivals and it was the biggest triumph of our national team in junior classes, however another class (three-year-old colts) was also won by a Polish horse. However, this trophy was given to a Saudi Arabian stud which is leasing him. Of course, we are talking about the Michałów-bred Kabsztad (Poganin – Kwestura/Monogramm), who got the final score of 456 points (including a ‘20’ for head and neck) and easily beat his rivals. Magic Romeo (Windsprees Mirage – M Randy/El Sher-Mann), bred by Dion Arabians (Belgium), owned by Italians, scored 449 points and entered the championship from the second position.
The 4-6-year-old mares’ class was quite a numerous one – 16 participants, including six Gazal Al Shaqab daughters, six Polish representatives, and two Polish-bred mares owned by the foreigners. Without any doubt, we could’ve expected the victory as our multichampion Emandoria (Gazal Al Shaqab – Emanda/Ecaho), owned/bred by Michałów State Stud, took part in the show. However, the winner of the class was Magora, also a Gazal Al Shaqab daughter, out of Margotka/Algorytm, bred by the Swedish stud Blommeröd, owned by Al Khalediah Stables from Saudi Arabia. She scored 469 points, including eight ‘20s’, for type, head and neck and movement. Emandoria with five ‘20s’ received 465 points and went second. Previously we saw the performance of Sefora (Ekstern – Sawantka/Pepton), owned/bred by Janów Podlaski State Stud, who got quite a high score (455 points, including a ‘20’ for head and neck), took the fifth position and entered the championship. Estaka (Gazal Al Shaqab – Eskalopka/Monogramm), Michałów-bred, owned by Falborek Arabians, distinguished herself with her movement (double ‘20’) and with 448 points she took the 9th position. Another Polish Gazal daughter, Wilda (out of Wilda/Ekstern), owned/bred by
Michałów State Stud, was 12th (444 points), Wegaza (out of Wedeta/Wermut), owned/bred by Falborek Arabians – fourteenth (438 points), and the Janów-bred Etnologia (Gazal Al Shaqab – Etalanta/Europejczyk) closed the class with 450 points and the eighth place. The Michałów-bred Faustyna (Emigrant – Felicjana/Ekstern), owned by Lutetia Arabians (Austria), went seventh, while less known Free Arsha, sold in uterus to Italy, a daughter of the Janów-bred Basma (Ararat – Baza/Eukaliptus) and Ekstern, won the sixth position, between Sefora and Faustyna. Two more horses entered the championship: an unruly, but well-moving CF Shamila (Moroc – AG Samsarah), from the third position, scoring 459 points, including four ‘20s’, while from the fourth place – Khaleifa (Kubinec – Farids Mandolin/Anaza El Farad), German-bred, owned by Albidayer Stud (UAE), with 456 points, including a ‘20’ for type.
In the least numerous classes, 7-9-year-old mares and 10-year-old and senior mares, only three participants each took part. In the first one an absolute winner was Millenia (Thefinaljudgment – Madeira/Narav Ibn Aswan), from German breeding, Italian-owned (by Gianpaolo Gubbiotti), with 459 points (including five ‘20s’), in front of Al Aliha (DWD Tabasco – Gahari/Abha Harim), bred/owned by Al Hambra Arabians (Austria) – 455 points, including a ‘20’ for movement. In the second one two Polish Monogramm daughters were facing each other – the property of Ajman Stud Kwestura (out of Kwesta/Pesennik) and the Michałów-bred Georgia (out of Gizela/Palas). This last one was beaten by her former stud mate, scoring 454 points, while Kwestura beat the point record, with the result of 470 points! The judges gave her four ‘20s’ for type, four for head and neck as well as additional four for movement. And we shall admit that all these scorings were well deserved because she showed her exceptional class one more time!
And that’s how the first, very long day of the Verona show, ended. The Poles, unsurprisingly, were leaving the hall no. 3 of Fieracavalli, feeling rather gloomy. We have expected, without any doubt, better results, despite of having heard before the championship from the Polish exhibitors that the judges were supporting Egyptian type this year. However, the predictions can never be proved, and the Polish team’s defeat was quite obvious.
The 4-6-year-old stallions began the second day of the show. There were 12 participants. The first Polish representative that performed, was the Janów-bred Alert (Piaff – Andaluzja/ Sanadik El Shaklan). The judges were not astonished and he went ninth with 447 points. Drabant (Gazal Al Shaqab – Demona/Monogramm), owned/bred by Michałów State Stud, impressed by his movement even the Italian audience, which is rather indifferent towards foreign horses, and some spontaneous applauses were heard. Three ‘20s’ for this feature without any doubt raised his final result – 451 points and enabled him taking the fifth position, but not entering the championship as just four horses from this class were classified. Next Polish horse, Pegasus (Gazal Al Shaqab – Pepesza/Eukaliptus), owned/bred by Janów Podlaski State Stud, didn’t move, but he did a great job while standing. 449 points gave him the eighth position. Those that entered the championship were: the class winner
LVA Maximus (Espano Estopa – Challon Salana/Carmargue), owned/bred by Lillyview Arabians (Great Britain), with 462 points, including four ‘20s’, the second place winner Memphis 27 (El Amin – SA Misha Apal/AS Natsir-Apal), owned/bred by Swatam Arabians from Belgium (460, including three ‘20s’), the third M.M. Fabrizio (CH El Brillo – MFA Forgetmenot/Fame VF), bred by Mario Matt from Austria, owned by Francesco Tripodi (Italy) – 459 points, including seven ‘20s’, but with a loss on body – and fourth Al Milan (Al Lahab – Milena/Ibn Narav), owned/bred by Reinhard Sax (Germany) – 454 points.
In the next class, 7-9-year-old stallions (10 participants, including four Polish-bred, 3 Polish-owned and one with Polish pedigree), a great looking Girlan-Bey (Pesal – Gracja Bis/Monogramm), bred by Michał Bogajewicz, owned by the Kristoffersen family (Sweden), surprised everyone in a very pleasant way. Indeed, among the Polish horses that performed in this class, he did the best: he scored up to 460 points, including a full row of ‘20s’ for movement! It gave him the second place, and, of course, a ticket to the championship. Esparto (Ekstern – Ekspozycja/Eukaliptus), owned/bred by Michałów State Stud, took the sixth position (451 points), which, comparing to his successful performances before, is definitely a weak result. Poganin (Laheeb – Pohulanka/Pepton), owned/bred by Janów Podlaski State Stud, had a better performance and with 455 points he took the third position (and he was qualified to the championship). His stud mate Salar (Ecaho – Saba/Etat) scored 448 points
and came ninth. He was outdistanced by Wares (Piruet – Wernera/Tallin), owned/bred by Scuderia Le Groane (Italy), with a Polish pedigree. The class was won by a definite favorite F Shamaal (Maysoun – Sarameena/Fa Ibn Sar), German-bred, Saudi-owned (Al Khalediah Stables). He scored 463 points, including, among others, two ‘20s’ for type, three for head and neck and one for movement. S.C. Dagash (Davidoff – Verbala/Balaton), bred in Germany as well, and sold to the Middle East (Albidayer Stud, UAE), entered the championship from the fourth position.
Only two horses participated in the last class, and two of them entered the championship: Emin Pacha de Lam (Ekla de Gargassan – Sayinara/Neman), owned/bred by Lam’s Arabians (France) – 457 points – and SDP Taylor (Travis MSC – SH Enchantress/DWD Tabasco), American-bred, Italian-owned (Marco Franchini) – 453 points, including a double ‘20’.
After a three-hour break, probably organized in order to enable the audience go shopping at the fair, the championships began. 13 participants (two Polish representatives, the full sisters from Chrcynno-Palace stud were among them) entered the Junior Mares final. Juwanda OS was appointed by the judges as the champion (votes 4:2), Alma Al Tiglio as the Silver Medal winner (4:2), while bronze was given to F.M. Gloriaa (5:1). Before the Top Five titles winners were announced, a heated debate began at the ring. As a result, the Top 5 titles were given to Baila de Djoon OS and Khansa Al Shaqab. After a closer look to the judges’ votes we can be quite sure that the discussion concerned the way of selecting the Top 5 prizewinners. Those two positions were probably elected in parallel and the judges votes for the 4th place winner didn’t ‘pass’ to the 5th position. Otherwise, the Top 5 title would’ve been
given to Psyche Victoria, who was indicated by two judges as a fourth place candidate. Khansa Al Shaqab, indicated by two judges as the fifth position winner, would’ve stayed without any trophy. Of course, the organizers are allowed to that kind of decisions (probably the DC’s opinion was the key one), but the situation would’ve been clear if the judges had been giving points in the championship, instead of indicating places. In this case the overall amount of points received by each horse would’ve decided its position.
The Junior Stallion Gold Medal (7 rivals) didn’t surprise anyone – it was given to Abha Qatar. Shanghai E.A. won the Silver, HDB Sihr Ibn Massai – bronze, while Kabsztad (5 of 6 indications) ended the rivalry with the Top Five title, just like Fahim Ishane OS.
The Senior Mares Championship (guided by the class scoring) couldn’t have been settled in other way: Kwestura became the winner (five judges indicated her, only Dr. Nasr Marei – a well-known Polish horses’ lover – had a different opinion) in front of Magora and Emandoria, who can’t recognize the Bronze Medal as a great achievement. The Top 5 Titles were given to CF Shamila and Millenia. Among nine championship participants we had three Polish representatives and four mares from the Polish breeding. So this category was definitely the most successful one for us – it brought Poland the highest trophy which was taken by the Poles (the Bronze Medal) and it proved the power of Polish breeding, less appreciated in the other categories.
F Shamaal became the Senior Stallion Champion, selected among ten participants; Silver went to LVA Maximus, Bronze – to Memphis 27. Girlan-Bey went fourth and he got the Top 5 title, Emin Pacha de Lam – fifth. One Polish-owned and two Polish-bred horses represented our country in this category.
After the championship, the Polish observers’ opinions were divided. Some of them claimed that we should be glad – the results indicate that buying European horses is worth it, as they reach for the laurels representing their non-European owners. The others advised us to forget about this whole event as soon as possible.
Today, when the emotions have already fallen, we might try to sum up the event. It seems that, for smaller exhibitors, taking part in the Verona event doesn’t make any sense: the journey is really fatiguing, change of climate, long stay, high costs, and very numerous classes dominated by horses of Middle Eastern and – what’s understandable – Italian owners. All those factors don’t bode well for success. Even strong breeders like Janów Podlaski or Michałów State Stud cannot be satisfied this time. It seems that in the shows, just like in endurance the advantage of Middle Eastern owners cannot be avoided. Excellent horses, found by intermediaries from the whole wide world, but also enormous amounts of money given for training are in game. In endurance, as the Polish contestant Beata Dzikowska says, even a mediocre rider atop a wonderful horse, supported by a professional and best equipped team’s care, is able to, without any effort, beat a better rider with worse logistic base. The same situation will occur – or maybe occurs now – in the shows. Only the question whether the Verona show shall be called the European Championship, still remains without an answer.
Christiane Chazel (France)
Ann Norden (Sweden)
Nasr Marei (Egypt)
Mohammed Machmoum (Marocco)
Marco Pittaluga (Italy)
Willi Poth (France)
Juwanda OS (WH Justice – Shak Lavanda/ZT Shakfantasy), br. Gestüt Osterhof (Germany), o. Dubai Stud
Alma Al Tiglio (Ajman Moniscione – Amanda Al Tiglio/Shamilah Masai Mara), br. Azienda Agricola Il Tiglio (Italy), o. Giancarlo Buzzi (Italy)
F.M. Gloriaa (WH Justice – Psity of Angels/Psytadel), br. Sans M. Mevr (Belgium), o. James Swaenepol (Belgium)
Baila de Djoon OS (Ajman Moniscione – Shak Shakira/ZT Shakfantasy), br. Gestüt Osterhof (Germany), o. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Saud Al Qasimi (UAE)
Khansa Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab – EAMT Marihouana/BJ Thee Mustafa), br/o. Al Shaqab Stud (Qatar)
Abha Qatar (Marwan Al Shaqab – ZT Ludjkalba/Ludjin El Jamaal), br. Yeguada Ses Planes (Spain), o. Al Mohamadia Stud (Saudi Arabia)
Shanghai E.A. (WH Justice – Salymah E.A/Khidar), br. Albert Sorroca (Spain), wł. Equus Arabians (Spain)
HDB Sihr Ibn Massai (Massai Ibn Marenga – Mayana/BJ Thee Mustafa), br. Dieter Gerbaulet (Germany), o. Darius Arabians (Germany) & Gianpaolo Gubbiotti (Italy)
Kabsztad (Poganin – Kwestura/Monogramm), br. Michałów State Stud (Poland), o. Michałów State Stud, leased by Athabh Stud (Saudi Arabia)
Fahim Ishane OS (Ajman Moniscione – Praetoria/Kubinec), br. Gestüt Osterhof (Germany), o. Gilles Morand (France)
Kwestura (Monogramm – Kwesta/Pesennik), br. Michałów State Stud (Poland), o. Ajman Stud
Magora (Gazal Al Shaqab – Margotka/Algorytm), br. Blommeröd Stud (Sweden), o. Al Khalediah Stables (Saudi Arabia)
Emandoria (Gazal Al Shaqab – Emanda/Ecaho), br/o. Michałów State Stud (Poland)
CF Shamila (Moroc – AG Samsarah), br. Sergio Gubbiotti (Italy), o. Azienda Agricola Francesca Tomasoni (Italy)
Millenia (Thefinaljudgment – Madeira/Narav Ibn Aswan), br. Ute Boeckle (Germany), o. Gianpaolo Gubbiotti (Italy)
F Shamaal (Maysoun – Sarameena/Fa Ibn Sar), br. Hansjürgen Friedmann (Germany), o. Al Khalediah Stables (Saudi Arabia)
LVA Maximus (Espano Estopa – Challon Salana/Carmargue), br/o. Lillyview Arabians (Great Britain)
Memphis 27 (El Amin – SA Misha Apal/AS Natsir-Apal), br/o. Swatam Arabians (Belgium)
Girlan-Bey (Pesal – Gracja Bis/Monogramm), br. Michał Bogajewicz (Poland), o. Kristoffersen family (Sweden)
Emin Pacha de Lam (Ekla de Gargassan – Sayinara/Neman), br/o. Lam’s Arabians (France)