By Eva-Maria Broomer / AES
Photography: Horsepower Creative and Kevin Sparrow
A total of 23 three-year-old riding horses found new owners in the Westfalian online auction, when customers from around the world invested an average of €17,382 in their future four-legged partners, and a stallion named Extravagant aroused the highest desires.
We are incredibly proud of our AES breeder Michelle Dawson of Stolen Silver Sport Horses Stud whose beautiful six-year-old mare Stolen Secret (Uthopia x Riccio) was the highest scoring entry out of 12 finalists at this year’s British Breeding Equine Bridge, winning a £1,000 training bursary and one year’s free membership with British Dressage. Stolen Secret was presented by the international Grand Prix rider Sonnar Murray-Brown who has produced the mare from a three-year-old.
Michelle’s success is all the more remarkable as she only breeds two or three foals a year. In her day job, she has the highly responsible and demanding role of working as an NHS anaesthetist, and she is an excellent example of what makes up the backbone of sport horse breeding, the many passionate and knowledgeable small breeders who focus on quality over quantity.
As Michelle puts it: “When you breed only a few, every single foal has to count.” When asked how she is going to spend her training bursary money, there is no hesitation: “We are going to go for lessons with Carl Hester. Of course, Carl rode Secret’s sire Uthopia, who is enjoying his retirement at his yard. I cannot wait to hear what he thinks of her.”
Michelle thinks very highly of Uthopia whom she has used a few times: “I have got a black Uthopia colt at home who is stunning and a sweetheart. There are very few Uthopia offspring around as he stands to very few mares. He is one of my favourite stallions with Secret being typical of his offspring. They have his mega trot, good canter, correct walk and phenomenal train-ability. Nothing phases them. Secret hadn’t been to a show since September yet you could see her thinking “we got this” as she walked into the arena.”
British Breeding Equine Bridge and AES Masterclass
The Equine Bridge is organised by British Breeding, an organisation for all British breeders of sports horses and ponies, from all studbooks. It was set up in 2018 after winning a bid to take over the running of the breeding related activities of the British Equestrian Federation. From the outset, British Breeding have enjoyed the support of the AES.
Studbook Director Joris van den Oetelaar explains: “We are often asked why we put in so much effort to support British Breeding, whose activities benefit all breeders and studbooks, including our direct competitors. The answer for me is simple: We can only grow our studbook if we make the entire industry stronger. And for that, we need to come together and support each other.”
In addition to a quarterly British Breeder Magazine, a webinar series, and annual stallion event for British based licensed stallions from all studbooks, the flagship activity of British Breeding is its Futurity and Equine Bridge programme... To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
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