Promoting Arabian Stallions in Warmblood Societies
by Barb Suvaka
photos by Suzanne Sturgill
I love the Arabian Sport Horse Division and all of the possibilities it offers us as competitors. One of the best decisions I ever made was to take Tuxedo Thyme ABA (Pyro Thyme SA x SMA Alad Khelima) to KYB Dressage and show him in this division. I have learned so much about dressage and how wonderful it is for helping riders and horses progress together. As I’ve watched dressage competition at both Arabian and open shows, I’ve become especially intrigued by the Arabian/Warmblood crosses that are getting increasingly popular. It’s obvious that Warmblood horses have a bigger and more relaxed look to their movement due to their size. However, the Arabians are definitely proving they have the athleticism to perform the movements, and they also add beauty and refinement. So why not push to have more Arabian/Warmblood crosses? Think about it, these crosses have the best of both worlds … the size and relaxed movement from the Warmblood breeding and the beauty, refinement and athleticism of the Arabian breed. Plus they can compete in both the Arabian and the open circuits successfully.
So since Tux is a multi-National Champion FEI Level Dressage Arabian Stallion, I started researching what it would take to get him licensed with some Warmblood registries. The first question I had to answer though was why? There’s nothing stopping a Warmblood mare owner from breeding to an Arabian so what is the benefit of getting the stallion in the Warmblood stud books? Well the answer is that it allows the mare owner to register the foal in that Warmblood registry. We started with the American Warmblood Society and Warmblood Registry in 2014. He passed easily so we went on to the Westfalen NA/ RPSI inspection in 2015. That also went very well. In 2017 we focused on Oldenburg Registry, which has two registry divisions: the German Oldenburg Verband/Weser-Ems; and the Oldenburg North America and International Sporthorse. We applied for both and were granted lifetime licenses in each case.
All of these inspections assess the overall conformation of the stallion and evaluate his movement. They usually require the stallion to do free jumping as well, but in Tux’s case he was exempt since he had proven himself at the FEI level of dressage with great scores to back it up. So the athleticism of the stallion is also very important. The inspections varied a bit. A couple registries watched Tux at liberty, and in one case he was also evaluated under saddle doing upper level dressage movements. It’s impressive that they look at all of these aspects of the stallion so they get a full picture of what he’s all about. I’m so honored that Tux easily passed all of the inspections. He is one of very few Arabian stallions to do this. We are planning to continue to look at other Warmblood societies going forward to continue to expand Tux’s résumé. My hope is that Warmblood mare owners recognize how much the Arabian breed can enhance the Warmblood breeds and also open up their show world to include the Arabian circuit in addition to the open circuit. I know that the Warmblood foals Tux has sired are going to be opening eyes to this in the very near future!