A Brief History of the Arabian Horse in Australia

 
   
 1983 Australian National Champion Stallion CHIP CHASE MECCALI [Cherokee Mecca/Lisa] on a Queensland beach at dawn.
Photo credit - Pat Slater
 
Compared with the antiquity of the breed, the short history of the Arabian horse in Australia seems but “a step in the journey of a lifetime”. Just a little over 2OO years separates the modern Australian Arabian from the arrival of his ancestors in this country which had no indigenous equine population. 

The First Fleet of 1788 brought with it a small group of horses collected on the sea journey from Capetown, and given the diverse origins of the horses of the Cape, probably the new arrivals carried some Arab and Barb blood in their veins. Over the next period of history until the mid-18OO’s, many horses of oriental extraction - some of Persian and Arabian blood from India - contributed to the foundation stock of the new colony. Some breeders brought horses directly from Arabia. There are over 1OO such stallions listed in the “Australian Stud Book” [Thoroughbred Bloodhorses]. Their progeny went into racing and general stock work and were also exported to India as remounts for the British Army, and for racing and polo.

One of the most influential stallions, HECTOR or “Old Hector” was imported in 1806 from Calcutta [he originally belonged to Colonel Arthur Wellesley the first Duke of Wellington]. In “The Australian Bloodhorse” [Barrie, 1956], a painting of him is annotated, “Hector, Bay Arab, at one time the property of the Duke of Wellington. Hector was imported from Calcutta to New South Wales and was the most outstanding sire during the first decade of Australian racing”. Some other notable stallions were WHITE WILLIAM [1804], SALADIN [early 1800’s] and MODEL [1818].

The foundation stock of the Australian Waler was Arabian, just as the Australian Stockhorse was founded squarely on the shoulders of the Arabian horse. In early Australia a “bloodhorse” was an Arabian, and the importation of Arab stallions, not all of them Purebred, was used to improve the quality of the general horse population and also to augment the fledgling sport of horse-racing. The Arabian sires are recorded in Volume One of the AJC’s Australian Stud Book, along with their get, but after 1878 no later Arabians were admitted. It was not until 196O that the first Volume of “The Australasian Arab Horse Stud Book” appeared, and in the meantime some very fine horses “fell between the cracks”.

It is a matter of regret that a number of quality Arabians came into this country before records of Arabian breeding were kept, and hence we have lost almost all trace of their stock. Among them were two very significant stallions from the most influential Arabian Stud in England, The Crabbet Stud - HADBAN and KARS - together with the mares FRANCOLIN and PURPLE STOCK. There were also the stallions FARHAN and ALIF [1875] brought in by Mr Dangar, and some mares.

THE BOUCAUT HORSES

The first properly recorded Arabian horses were those imported from The Crabbet Stud by Sir James Penn Boucaut, a Judge of the Supreme Court and Premier of South Australia. The first importation in 1891 brought the stallion RAFYK [Azrek/Rose of Sharon] and the mares DAHNA [Kars/Dahma] and NAMUSA [Ahmar/Narghileh]. Ten years later Boucaut imported a stallion FARAOUN [Mesaoud/Fulana] and two mares ROSE OF JERICHO [Kars/Rodania] and EL LAHR [Imamzade/Dinarzade]. Today Dahna’s line is the oldest surviving line in Australia through her daughter SHERIFA [by Rafyk] and her granddaughter El Lahr. Sherifa was bred to the non-Crabbet stallions MAHBOAB and MAGISTRATE [both imported from India by Mr Frank Austin of Avalon, Victoria], to produce two fillies that in this country underline some of the most successful breeding families even today.

In 1908 Judge Boucaut’s stud was dispersed. Arabians from his Quambi Stud had been sold over the length and breadth of Australia. As there was still no Australian Registry for

FARAOUN

Arabian horses, many went to outback cattle properties as sires and stockhorses. Their progeny was rarely recorded, except by the individual properties in their Stock Books, although there is a great deal of evidence, both anecdotal and in letter form, of the satisfaction of their owners. Some of these are published in Sir James Boucaut’s own book, “The Arab, The Horse of the Future” [1905]. These horses contributed right back at the beginning to the type of horse that today is the Australian Stockhorse, remembering also that many of the early horses known as “bloodhorses” or “thoroughbreds” were actually high-percentage Arabians and are traceable as such.

Fortunately, several keen Arabian enthusiasts had been collecting Quambi stock for some time, registering their foals in the British “Arab Horse Society Stud Book”, a practice some early breeders continued right up to the 1970’s. The dispersal allowed them to further expand their own Studs.

The Hon. Samuel Winter-Cooke of Murndal, Victoria, acquired many of the best Quambi horses. He imported the stallion FAKREDDIN [Rijm/Feluka] in 1911, and also owned the aged stallion Magistrate.

Winter-Cooke’s own Stud was dispersed at his death in 1928, with a resultant loss once more, of some lines. One of his mares, DERYABAR [1923][Khamasin/Khadijad] went on to found a fine Australian family.

SHAHZADA

The most significant non-Crabbet importation occurred in 1925 when Mr A.E. Grace of Bowral and later Denman, NSW, purchased the famed English endurance stallion SHAHZADA [Mootrub/Ruth Kesia] acompanied to Australia by two mares NEJDMIEH [desert-bred] and MIRIAM [Nadir/Ranya]. Shahzada’s Australian family is enormous. He became a noted showhorse, winning eight Championships at Sydney Royal Show from 1926 to 1933. His influential family included his sons GENGHIS KHAN and ISHMAEL [From Miriam], PRINCE NEJD and SIRDAR [from Nejdmieh], as well as his grandsons DARINTH [Sirdar/Judith] and ZADARAN [Prince Nejd/Yenbo].

   
 SHAHZADA  

Over 4O% of the horses entered in Volume One of “The Australasian Arab Horse Stud Book” are Shahzada descendants. He was one of the single most influential Arabians which ever came to this country.

Other breeders of the era between the two World Wars included Mr G. Leonard Brown of Tondsburine, Gulargambone, NSW who imported the stallion HARIR [Berk/Hamasa] from Crabbet Stud; Mrs W.D. Brown of Rosewood, Gulargambone, whose brother Major R. Brown had acquired the stallion RIEF [Sotamm/Ridaa] from Lady Anne Blunt [founder of The Crabbet Stud] in 1918; and Mr A.J. McDonald who established his Tehama Stud at Dubbo in NSW in approximately 1915. His stallions were Rief, RAISULI [Rief/Ayesha] and Prince Nejd.

When the First World War ended, there was a resurgence of interest in Arabian horses. Thousands of horses from Australia had been used in the war effort. Some of the old Studs had disappeared. New Studs emerged.

FENWICK STUD

Over the next few years several major happenings determined the future of the breed. The first and most significant of these was the founding of a Stud in Victoria by Mrs A.D.D. Maclean. She developed a close association with Lady Wentworth who had inherited The Crabbet Stud in England, beginning a series of importations which contributed incalculably to the breeding of Arabians in this country. She also managed to trace some of the earlier Colonial Arabians which could easily have been “lost”, assembling the beginnings of a fine Stud on the property her father had named “Fenwick” after the village in Scotland where he was born.

Mrs Maclean’s importations were many [and all but two from The Crabbet Stud] commencing with the selection of the mare RAFINA [Rustem/Risala] with colt foal at foot RASEEL by Nureddin in 1924. Between 1925 and 1961 she made the following importations:

 

SHAFREYN
RIFFAL
SINDH

STALLIONS
INDIAN LIGHT [Naseem Nisreen] 1935
FAYRIAL [Fayal/Raxina] 1946
RIFFAL [Naufal/Razina [from Lady Yule] 1947
ELECTRIC SILVER [Raktha/Silfina] 195O
SILVER MOONLIGHT [Indian Magic/Silver Fire] 1951
SHAFREYN [Royal Diamond/Sharfina] 1956
ROSSFENNICK [Indian Magic/Rosinella] 1958
GREYLIGHT [iiu] [ Bright Shadow/Royal Radiance] 1959
SINDH [Silver Vanity/Silfina] 1961

MARES
NASIRIEH [Skowronek/Nisreen] 1935
NURALINA [Hassam/Nasira] 1936
CARLINA [Rissam/Shamnar] [from Lady Yule] 1947
RIZALA [Rissam/Ghezala] 1947
GREY CORONET [Oran/Grey Royal] 1951
ROSINELLA [Oran/Rosalina] 1956
ROYAL RADIANCE [Royal Diamond/Silver Gilt] 1958

These horses became vital threads in the fabric of our breed history.

Mrs Maclean also purchased and made much use of the stallion RAKIB [Nax/Rythama] which had been imported in 1938 by Mr and Mrs Edward Hirst of Springmead Farm, Sydney, NSW.

Despite its own mare importations, Fenwick’s most significant female family is that of the mare BARADA II [Raisuli/Gadara] who was descended from the Boucaut mare Namusa. Barada II was foaled in 1934 at the Stud of Mr A.J. McDonald, Glenwood, Dubbo, NSW. Today this is a vast and important Australian family.

THE JELBART STUD AND THE NSW DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

In 1935 a great Arabian enthusiast, Mr Joseph Jelbart of Stony Park East near Albury on the NSW/Victorian border, gathered together a group of four mares from the old Winter-Cooke Stud, together with two sons of Shahzada, SIRDAR and ISHMAEL and several mares from Mr A.E. Grace. He later bought the stallion KATAF [Outlaw/Kateefah], a horse imported in 1928 by Mr E.G. Bonython of South Australia. This group of Arabians was the catalyst of the ready-made Stud of 18 mares acquired in 1949 by the NSW Department of Agriculture for its own Stud, later divided between Wagga and Hawkesbury Colleges. The Department used the Australian-bred stallions GENGHIS KHAN [Shahzada/Miriam] and JEDRAN [Prince Nejd/Salama], later importing from England the very widely-used stallions SALA [Grey Owl/Hama], and RAZAZ [Champurrado/Rahab] from Mr Musgrave-Clark’s Courthouse Stud.

 
RAZAZ DELOS THALIA

The Colleges were pivotal influences on Arabian breeding for the next 4O years. They not only bred and raised Purebred Arabian horses at a time when there were very few available, they also stood their stallions at public stud which gave a critical start to many small breeders. They held sales and seminars and showed teams of quality, beautifully-prepared Arabians at the Sydney Royal Show, often winning the top awards with exhibits such as SALA [1949], RAZAZ [1957, 1960] , PROMETHEUS [1958], the mare THALIA [1959, 1961, 1962, 1964], and not forgetting the magnificent stallion DELOS [Spindrift/Hestia], Champion Stallion in 1965, 1967, 1968 and 1969.

BOSTOCKS STUD

In Queensland, Mrs Elwyn Bligh of Bostocks, Brookstead, began a small Stud in 1947, introducing the more modern Rissalix line to Australia with her importations. Mrs Bligh’s foundation stock came from Fenwick Stud - a stallion NEKHL [Rashid II/Nasirieh] and three mares. The Australian-bred stallions MELRIFF [Riffal/Meliha], IBN FAYRIAL [Fayrial/Senabra] and ZADARAN [Prince Nejd/Yenbo] were used in the early years.

BIRUBI AURA

Bostocks imported from England a number of individuals which were to play vital roles in Australia. They included the stallions COUNT MANILLA [Count Dorsaz/Namilla] in 1957; CRYSTAL FIRE [Dargee/Rosinella] in 1961; ABIRAM [Noran/Rythoura] in 1965; ZENITH II [General Grant/Ziree el Wada] in 1972; and [with a syndicate] RINGING GOLD [Mikeno/Gleaming Gold].

These all became noted showhorses themselves and sires of some exceptional showhorses like the great mares FANTASY and CONTESSA. Ringing Gold sired the very first Australian Champion Stallion BIRUBI AURA.

Perhaps the most meaningful Bostocks importation was that of the mare SCHERZADE [Irex/Shamal] in foal to Blue Domino, in 195O.

Her colt foal ROYAL DOMINO, together with the Fenwick sons of Sindh, and the sons of Count Manilla, provided a great many of the showring Champions of the 1960’s and 1970’s all over the country, except perhaps for Melbourne Royal which was the court of the Fenwick horses for a great many years.

     
 COUNT MANILLA  MIRAYA  ROYAL DOMINO

 

INVALUABLE CONTRIBUTIONS

 
 AETHON

 

 MARES OF FRANKLIN STUD

To Australia came some of the great horses of The Crabbet Stud. The “Crabbet Superhorse” STAR DIAMOND [Raktha/Sharima] was imported in 1954 by Mr Cedric Old of Darribee Stud at Goulburn, NSW.

His half-brother GRAND ROYAL [Oran/Sharima] Lady Wentworth’s Supreme Champion, came to the Queensland Agricultural College in 1959.

The mare SILVER MAGIC [Indian Magic/Silver Fire] was imported in 1956 by Mrs Mary Leicht of Sydney who also selected the colt SPINDRIFT [Silver Drift/Silver Grand] at Crabbet after Lady Wentworth’s death. The latter sired two of Australia’s great show stallions - AETHON of The Crofts Stud, Sydney, and DELOS of Wagga Agricultural College.

A Rangoon son STEFAN [from Somara] came to South Australia in 1946 and lived to be a fertile 35 years of age. [Australia had a great deal of Skowronek blood, but only one direct son or daughter, Nasirieh]. He died in 1979 after a long and distinguished breeding life though he sired very few Purebreds. The Naseem son RIYALAN and the Raktha son INDIAN JEWEL, were noted Australian acquisitions. The Crabbet-bred SILWAN [Dargee/Silwa] was imported by Mrs Mary Leicht, and ended life over 3O years later at Mrs Pam Roydhouse’s Chip Chase Park. He has a huge group of descendants.

There are many Studs which contributed to Arabian breeding in Australian pre-197O. In Western Australia Mr Charles Readhead began breeding Arabians in 1935 with the purchase of the imported mare MIRIAM [Nadir/Ranya].

Tasmania has been the home since 1947 of the Franklin Stud, begun by the Butler family and continued by Mr and Mrs David Nye [nee Butler]. The foundation stock came from Mr Jelbart's Stud and Mrs Hilary Hughes in Queensland. Its distinguished senior sires have been JUDIALA [Aladdin/Judith] and the importation from Crabbet Stud, SHERIF [Royal Diamond/Serafina].

VICTORIA

 MRS JEAN LUCKOCK AND FABLE

In Victoria Dr Edwin Crozier and his daughter Cecily [Mrs John Cornish] of Barnoolut, Casterton, Victoria, imported a white stallion RIFFAYAL [Fayal/Ariffa] from England in 1949. They also imported INDIAN JEWEL [Raktha/Indian Pride] in 195O, and the mares ROSE DU SABLE [Jaleel/Nisan] and MIRVANAH [full-sister to Scherzade][Irex/Shamal]. Mrs Cornish is the current Patroness of the Arabian Horse Society of Australia.

Mrs Jean Luckock began her Ennerdale Stud, Darlington, Victoria, in 195O with a Fenwick colt, SIRHAN [Rashid II/Dahana]. Via the progeny of her stallions RAMI and FABLE [Sindh/Fadoura] Mrs Luckock made enormous contributions to the acceptance of the Arabian as a hunter and jumper. This Stud continues with a third generation of the Luckock family.

Mr Bob Pilgrim’s Stud at Tatura is long dispersed but his foundation mares ELECTRIMEL [Electric Silver/Meliha] and ELECTRA MOON [Silver Moonlight/Electrimel] preside over a vast dynasty. Mr Pilgrim’s stallion BOOMERANG MUSKATEER [Mustafa/Deirdre] holds the Australian record price for a stallion at auction.

Other well-known older Victorian Studs were those of Mr Jack Mathiske, Mr Bruce Eltringham and Mrs Marg Gillon.

NEW SOUTH WALES

In New South Wales the grandsons of Shahzada enjoyed showring supremacy during the late 1940’s and early 1950’s. Mr Dick Best established Newbridge Stud in approximately 1947 with the stallion DARINTH [Sirdar/Judith] a Champion in three States.

 
ZADARAN

Equally prominent was the stallion ZADARAN [Prince Nejd/Yenbo] owned by Mr Ted Lock and later by Bostocks Stud. In this era, the Studs of the NSW Department of Agriculature flourished.

Arabian Park and Santarabia Studs, owned by two Presidents of the Arabian Horse Society, Mr Paul James and Mr Leo Campbell respectively, purchased foundation stock from both Fenwick and the Department Studs, while Arabian Park benefited from a line of mares that originated at Bostocks Stud. Arabian Park became famous for the progeny of the stallion BANDEROL [Sindh/Balsora]. Its great show mare DESERT QUEEN has become an icon of the breed.

Santarabia Stud became one of Australia’s largest, exported stallions to the United States, and owned the premier stallion RUBERTO [Sindh/Ringlet]. Both Banderol and Ruberto were bred by Fenwick Stud.

RALVON PILGRIM

Ralvon Stud was begun in 1954 by Mr and Mrs Ron Males, with the grey stallion RIKHAM [Rissam/Rafeena] that had been imported by Mr and Mrs Edward Hirst of Springmead Farm.

Rikham’s son RALVON PILGRIM [from Trix Silver, a Royal Domino mare] became the first Australian Arabian to be shown overseas when he journeyed to England to be named Supreme International Champion at the 1977 Silver Jubilee Show at Ascot, England.

The Males’ had many, many show wins in Australia too, and later became prominent endurance riders and breeders, among the first to export to the UAE.

Arabesque Stud, owned by Mrs Lesley Dowey, is a significant smaller continuing Stud that began in 1959 with the foundation mare HESTIA [Jedran/Alaga Maid] bred by the NSW Department of Agriculture, where Mrs Dowey was employed as a lecturer for many years. She was a partner in the importation of the stallion RINGING GOLD, and with Mr Peter Pond, in the importation of the stallion BASKHAN [Bask/ Kimeyn].

 BANDEROL DESERT QUEEN  RUBERTO

Mr Les Ellery’s Cudgelbar Stud at Dunedoo, NSW had its beginnings in that of Mr A.J. McDonald, in 1930. It began with the purchase of the stallion KAILHAN [Raisuli/Zarif], and the lease of a stallion and two Shahzada mares from the estate of the late A.J. McDonald. He still breeds with a unique group of Arabians of pre-Skowronek lines, the old Blunt bloodlines, which have been coined as “Colonial Arabians”. They are in demand as tough, wiry endurance horses. His principal stallions are CUDGLEBAR PERSIAN PRINCE [Persian Lyric/Cudglebar Piety] and CUDGELBAR MANAK [Cairo/ Cudglebar Massah].

Other significant older NSW Studs belonged to Mrs Claire Proudford [The Crofts], Mr Cedric Old [Darribee], Mr and Mrs George Prince [Wyanga], Mr Peter Bell [Kehilan], Mrs Pam Roydhouse [Chip Chase Park] and Mr and Mrs Fred Dawson [Iraki Stud]. Mrs A.E. Toms of Liverpool imported a significant mare QUAKER GIRL [Riffal/Niseyra] in foal to Irex. The colt foal was YOUROUK.

QUEENSLAND

In Queensland Miss Marion Macqueen [Mrs Tom Sharman] began her Stud in 1949. It was later named Jangharm after the hill on the property at Cooranga North, and became synonomous with the name of the stallion ROYAL DOMINO [Blue Domino/Scherzade] as he sired many showring Champions and influential broodmares. It is a continuing Stud, these days with Russian and Egyptian bloodlines.

Sir Clarence Leggett’s Oxford Stud is linked historically with its famous show and broodmare CONTESSA [Count Manilla/Electric Ray]. Oxford Stud also bred a son of distinction in OXFORD DECIMUS [Risaldar/Oxford Sunset] a Contessa grandson who became the backbone of the now very large and influential Bremervale Stud, co-incidentally recently re-located at Oxford,on the Brisbane River, once the property of Sir Clarence who died in 2OO1.

 MILDOM GRAND ROYAL SILVER MOONLIGHT

The Queensland Agricultural College at Lawes founded its Stud in 1957 with the purchase of the Stud of Mrs Mary Leicht, including such notable horses as SILVER MAGIC and the stallion SILWAN [Dargee/Silwa]. It became an importer of stallions - GRAND ROYAL [Oran/Sharima] and MAHIF [Indian Magic/Myolanda] - as well as the home of SILVER MOONLIGHT and SPINDRIFT, all of which were available at public stud. For more than twenty years it was the hub of Arabian activity in Queensland. The huge Invitational Arabian Horse Sales, the largest of which lasted for three days and listed over 3OO Arabian horses, were legendary.

THE BUSY 1970'S AND ONWARDS

The 1970’s saw a period of rapid expansion on the Arabian scene in Australia. In all, 423 horses were imported - 176 stallions and 257 mares. The busiest year was 1978 when a record 31 stallions and 91 mares [or 122 horses in total] were imported. Many of these Arabians came from our traditional source, the United Kingdom, but now the new blood was added from The United States, Germany, Austria, Spain, Russia, Hungary, Egypt, Poland and Sweden. Australia also exported Arabians to overseas destinations including the United Kingdom, Germany, New Zealand, China, Malaysia and New Caledonia.

A network of Clubs and Promotional Groups sprang up all over Australia. Hundreds of new, small hobby Studs, and some large commercial Studs too, were founded. The existing Arabian Shows became bigger, and there were more of them. Overseas Judges, mostly from the United States, became regular visitors. People began to send mares interstate to Stud, attended Shows interstate, travelled and visited within Australia and Overseas. The Arabian was suddenly a very high-priced commodity because of the high demand and low numbers available. It seemed as if every 2-year-old filly was in foal! The Arabian horse was on the move, and for those who bred, owned, and rode him, the world opened up.

Another significant development, which cannot be overlooked, was endurance riding, and the seminal event that was the very first Tom Quilty Endurance Ride which was held at Richmond, NSW in 1966. It was pioneered by well-known Australian bushman and bush outfitter, the owner of “Hoof and Horns” magazine, Mr R.M.Williams who was also an Arabian breeder. This sport has seen huge growth in the thirty years since 197O, to the point where Australian teams and riders are now very prominent in endurance rides around the world, and hundreds of Australian-bred Arabians have been exported, mostly to the United Arab Emirates.

In 1969 while travelling overseas, Mrs Tanya Hawley bought a beautiful young half-Egyptian filly named NAADIRAH, by the Egyptian stallion Aswan from the Russian-bred mare Napraslina. She was sent to stud in Germany to be bred to the Nazeer son Hadban Enzahi, resulting in the birth of a filly, NARA. Thus Australian breeders began to be interested in importing Egyptian horses to freshen up bloodlines here. The first Straight Egyptian to come to this country was Mr Paul James’ brown stallion ANSATA EL HAKIM by Ansata Ibn Halima. He began a flood of Egyptian horses, mostly males to begin with, and many of them descendants of Ansata Ibn Halima. Some of the most popular ones were Dunwingeri and Star of Arabia Studs’ black AL KARIM SIRHALIMA and Mr Peter Pond’s ANSATA EL SHAHWAN [Ansata Shah Zaman/Ansata Rhodora]. One of the earliest Egyptians to arrive was the grey 15/16 Egyptian stallion MUSTAFA [Hadban Enzahi/Masarrah] who became something of a standard-bearer with progeny equally successful in the showring and in endurance.

 TANYA AND JON HAWLEY WITH NARA MUSTAFA ASFOUR

Mrs Marion Richmond, with her parents Mr and Mrs Peter Simon, began Simeon Stud breeding Russian and Egyptian lines at Dural near Sydney. Marion travelled extensively selecting stock for her Stud, including two Aswan mares which remained in Europe, and a Straight Egyptian mare from Babolna Stud in Hungary - 27 IBN GALAL V - who was our first Australian National Champion Mare in 1983. The Simeon horses have enjoyed remarkable success in the showring here, and many, including the black SIMEON SADIK [owned by Halsdon Stud in the UK] and SIMEON SHAI [owned in the US] have been exported and successfully shown overseas. In more recent years, the premier stallion has been the grey ASFOUR [Malik/Hanan].

Polish bloodlines have not been as prolific. One of the earliest Polish horses of influence was the bay stallion CYRASA [Comet/Barcelona] imported by the NSW Department of

 
 27 IBN GALAL V

Agriculture. Santarabia Stud introduced Polish blood through its stallions SAN SEBASTIAN, PRIAM and WITEZAN [ex USA]. The Mulawa Stud of Mr Greg Farrell [Snr] and family imported a Pure Polish stallion AMBITION [Bask/Bint Ambara], in 1976. Their Stud has expanded significantly with the introduction of more Polish and Russian lines, and is a prominent exhibitor of top show stock including Australian Champions. Mrs Lillaine Gedye of Batlow was an ardent promoter of Polish bloodlines all through the 70’s and 80’s.

Mr Peter Pond began his Forest Hill Stud at Maitland with imported Egyptian horses, and had great success with his stallion HANSAN [El Hilal/Hamamaa] and lovely imported mares like BINT SUDDONNA, OMAYMA and BINT ZAARIS. Now in the Yarramalong Valley, Peter and Jenny Pond still have a predominantly Egyptian herd. Peter is the secretary of the World Arabian Horse Organization.

Crabbet bloodlines continued to be bred, and have seen a world-wide resurgence following successful Conventions in the US [1983], UK [1985], Australia [2OOO] and the UK [2002]. These horses have found new popularity with the rise of endurance riding and continue to do well in saddle classes. Fenwick Stud continues, in a more modest form, with a third generation of the Maclean family, Ms Vicki Maclean, at the helm. Mr Ron Ryan’s stallion RASHAM [Greylight/Sparkle] has been our only Pure Crabbet Australian Champion [1985] although most of our modern Champions [especially the mares] have pedigrees that stretch back as far as Boucaut times. The Colonial horses are very small in number, but are bred by very enthusiastic Studs, and are in demand for endurance riding.

 
 AMIR EL SHAKLAN

The 198O’s saw Australia embrace the latest phenomenon from overseas - the stallion El Shaklan.

There were a number of El Shaklan direct progeny imported, but the one which has proved most prolific is the chestnut AMIR EL SHAKLAN imported by the Fairview Stud of Peter and Vivienne Hall, NSW. He has been an exceptional sire of typey showhorses and has provided a host of Australian Champions, especially recent Champion Mares bred from the mares of long-time Australian Arabian breeder Mrs Sheila Stump of Windella Stud. He is the sire of US National Champion FAIRVIEW KLASSIQUE.

A second importation of Fairview Stud and Mr and Mrs D Amor, SHAKLA KHAN, has been similarly successful. The Simeon-bred SIMEON SA’AR has also had a significant impact on Australian breeding. El Shaklan lines are still being imported in 2OO4, as are Egyptian bloodlines, with the descendants of the stallion Morafic now most popular.

The Australian Arabian Championships are currently being held each year at the Sydney International Equestrian Centre at Horsley Park on the outskirts of Sydney. The year 2OO4 will mark the 23rd year of the Championships with five days of interstate competition, halter and saddle, Purebred and Derivative. Drought and its ramifications have affected many Arabian breeders over the last 1O years but the Society is robust and horse numbers are high as we head further into the new century.

FOOTNOTES

There are a number of excellent sources of information on historical and contemporary Australian Arabians. A few of the following references are not readily available, although Arabian horse researchers are a particularly resourceful breed and can often seek out the more obscure publications through websites or on Ebay. Those who wish to know more may explore some of the publications listed here. Look for the “Australian Arabian Horse News” quarterly on the news-stands.

The Arabian Horse Society is currently setting up a Reading Room and Library which will have many of these reference books and photographs available for research at the Society’s Windsor Office.

1. PERIODICALS

“Australian Arabian Horse News” - 1967 to 2004
“Australian Arabian Studs and Stallions” - 1978 to 2004
“The Australian Arabian Yearbook” - 1989 to 1996
“Arabian Focus” [1997]

2. BOOKS

“The Arabian Horse in Australia”, Volumes I to V.
“The Crabbet Arabian Imports to Australia” [Flynn and Gordon]
“Australia’s Crabbet Arabian Horse Annuals” - 1990 to 2004
The Australian Arabian Horse Stud Books [196O to 2003]
The Arab Horse Society Stud Books [UK] from 1919.
“Naadirah: The Arabian Dream” - Tanya Hawley

 

Copyright ©2004 Coralie Gordon