Sunday, November 6, 2016

Teamwork, Success, and Future Plans For Clare Bastian

We are very excited to introduce our newest guest blogger, Clare Bastian. Clare recently attended the 2016 Sierra Pacific Regional Pony Club Show Jump Rally with other members of Deer Creek Pony Club. Deer Creek is based here at Dragonfire and Clare is an Academy @ Dragonfire Rider as well as a member of Team DF. We asked her to give us her perspective on their wildly successful rally.


Show JumpRally 2016 
By Clare Bastian

It happened! I finally found the perfect pony...I mean it only took 3 months of lying awake for countless nights, hoping for the opportunity to lease a horse. I had recently outgrown my last lease horse, skill wise... and I was dying to get back in the saddle. So, as you can imagine, when the word got out that Kilbarry Prince was for lease, of course, I was the first one in line. If you don’t already know who Prince is, I assure you, you would be the first in line too... that is, if he wasn’t already taken. *wink wink*

A few weeks ago, Prince and I competed in the annual Show Jump Rally. This year it was held at The Murieta Equestrian Center. It was our first competition together and I'm not going to lie, we did pretty awesome together.

Clare piloting Prince to a fast and clear round

Jump Rally started off like any other Pony Club Rally. Exciting, fun and a bit stressful. The first morning went fairly smoothly aside from a few minor complications. One small wound, an ill-fitting girth and a mysterious disappearing hoof pick later, I was ready to ride. I was the second to last rider in a division of 10 riders, so I had a lot of waiting-around-time in between my course walk and warm up. At this juncture I spent many minutes just standing outside the warm up ring...or at least I tried to stand. Prince would not sit still! Although it was kind of exasperating, it wasn't necessarily a bad thing. Normally Prince is not the most forward horse out there (he's Irish, what can I say) but I took his restlessness to mean that he was going to be spicier than usual. And spicier he was! I even got a little buck out of him in the warm up ring!

My first two rides of the weekend were fantastic! I went clear in both my jumper round and my equitation round. Plus, Prince and I had the fastest time in our division. I was extremely relieved when I was finished riding. I had been quite anxious about my ride for about two weeks. Prince had been stopping at jumps a lot, but with a lot of help from my trainers, I was able to fix this problem (for the most part). I wasn't completely confident though, so when I finished my rounds completely clear, I was overjoyed!

Although my rides were definitely the highlights of my day, they weren’t the only thing I will remember about Jump Rally. The level of partnerships that my team members showed amongst each other was one of my favorite parts about the rally as well. In case you aren't familiar with Pony Club rallies, each club competes as a team, or multiple teams, depending on the amount of members. Each team consists of three or four riders. At the end of the rally each individual competitor’s scores are added together with their other team members’ scores. The overall score is a reflection of your team’s riding and horse management. In past rallies my team members and I encountered many issues in our horse management, riding, and teamwork skills. We have done nothing but improve over the past four years and Jump Rally is probably one of the best examples of this. Although it took awhile to figure out how to work together as a team, we finally have it figured out and we work so well together it’s almost as if we are working as one.

The second day went a lot like the first, amazingly well. Everyone on my team got clear rounds, we did great in horse management (I don't think we even got any points docked on Sunday), and we had tons of fun! There was a large gap of time between our rides and the awards. Despite this long wait, there was never a dull moment in our tack room. It seemed like we had a new inside joke to add to the extremely long list of already existing jokes every few minutes! When scores were finally posted, I can assure you we were not disappointed! My team (Deer Creek 1) won first place overall and first place in horse management! Also, one member got Champion in her division and I got Reserve Champion in my division! It was incredibly exciting and we all broke out in, “We are The Champions,” as soon as the award ceremony was over.

Deer Creek Rally members celebrate a team effort

In a week or two I will be competing in the Fresno Horse Trials. This will be my first time competing in an event and I'm SUPER excited!!!!!!! In a way I owe this opportunity to Jump Rally because Jump Rally is what compelled me to find a new lease horse in order to compete! And, since Prince and I did so well at Jump Rally, my mom decided to let me compete in my first event this month in Fresno.

Even though I've only been riding Prince for a month he has already taught me so much, not only about riding, but about myself. He has helped me form and finalize my near term and future goals. Before riding Prince, I really didn’t have any ambitions beyond competing in a couple of Pony Club rallies per year and possibly a Jumper show or two. Now I have a passion for riding, which I believe that I’ve always had. I just needed the right horse to ignite my fire. I want to ride more, show more, and become a better rider! All I can think about day and night is my future as a rider. I want to go to Rolex someday and maybe even the Olympics. I want to break records, I want to be the best, and I want to win. In just 1 month I have learned so much from Prince and I am curious to see what he’ll teach me in the next few months!

Although it took a lot of patient waiting, hoping and dreaming, I finally found the perfect pony. The faint sketch of my future as a rider hidden deep in my mind is starting to become a beautiful, colorful painting that I think about all the time. I am so optimistic about what the future brings for Prince and me! He is the most wonderful “unicorn”, even if he does misbehave at times. Prince has already taught me so much and I've been so lucky to be able to ride him. Jump Rally was an opportunity for me to realize just how much riding means to me and I can't wait to see how Prince and I do at the Fresno Horse Trials! 

Clare and Prince

Thank you Clare for this wonderful blog!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Hallelujah DF Crowned USEA Future Event Horse Champion

Hallelujah DF
Hallelujah DF has recently been named the West Coast USEA Overall Yearling Future Event Horse Champion. Owned by Cheron Laboissonniere, this Premium Holsteiner filly is by Mighty Magic and out of Colombia BF.

 In 2010, Mighty Magic was the World Champion of seven-year old event horses in the CCI 2** at Le Lion d’Angers, France, after having taken silver the year before at the same venue in the class for six-year olds. He is a son of Mytens xx, a breeding stallion that has combined the marvellous thoroughbred type with the popular warmblood qualities, rideability and show jumping potential. Mytens xx presented a spectacular leg and back technique as well as a tremendous scope over the jumps. Dam’s sire Heraldik xx was one of the best refining stallions in earlier breeding history and very popular all over Germany. He was of special interest for breeding event horses, and is responsible for many of today's Olympic and WEG champions. The granddam Fiona VIII was bred to Contender and gave birth to the advanced level jumper Conradin 3 with whom Janne-Friedericke Meyer started to participate at international competitions in 2005. Heraldik xx can be frequently found in the first generations of successful international event horses. Lavall I carries a high percentage of thoroughbred blood as well. Together with Ladalco, the winner of his stallion licensing, again you can find an increased thoroughbred influence further down in the pedigree via Ladykiller xx, Sacramento Song xx, Anblick xx and Waldenser xx. And that’s not all: In fifth, sixth and seventh generation, there are Mephisto, Laertes and Cornett, three more representatives of the Manometer xx, Ladykiller xx and Cottage Son xx –lines. There is almost 90% thoroughbred blood in Mighty Magic’s pedigree. On his dam side, Mighty Magic is a representative of the Holstein line 1947 that produced the following important breeding stallions for different breeding areas: Alibi de Laubry (Netherlands), Angriff (Holstein), the fantastic Cambridge (privately owned stallion in Holstein), Consens (privately owned stallion in Holstein), Contini (Warendorf state stud stallion), Exkurs (Holstein, Netherlands), Lehnsherr GL (privately owned stallion in Rhineland), Leon (Holstein) as well as Quick Dancer I and II (privately owned stallions in Baden-Württemberg).

Hallelujah's dam, Colombia BF, is by Diarado who is brilliant in his type, superior in his appearance and possesses extremely precious bloodlines. A winning stallion from top to toe, combined with fantastic movements and a jet black coat. His abilities seem endless - effortless, quick and superior with an ideal bascule he was the topic of every conversation at the Holstein stallion approvals. Like pearls on a string he combines the big names of the Holstein breeding through his dam which is by the outstanding sire Corrado out of a Contender-Lord-Ramiro dam. Amongst the highly successful descendants of the grand Holstein lineage 318 d2 are the international show jumpers Cabrio/Toni Hassmann, Morales/Dr. Michael Rüping and numerous licensed stallions such as Corofino I and II, Coriano, Crawford, Chello I and II as well as the licensing-champion Camiros (sire of Maya Black's Doesn't Play Fair). His sire Diamant de Semilly ridden by Eric Levallois was member of the French gold winning team at the world championships in Jerez and won the team silver medal at the European championships the following year. Bred for performance, he has been consistently named "best sire of young horses" at the French championships in Fontaineblau . He can look upon an entire armada of international top-class horses and by now belongs to the most sought after sires in France. Grandsire Le Tot de Semilly was also internationally successful and is considered to be one of the best show jumping producers in France. Colombia's damsire is the ever-popular, Cassini II.

In FEH classes, horses are judged on both their conformation and the quality and correctness of their gaits.  Upon entering the arena, their handlers are asked to stand the horses up for inspection to allow the judge to analyze the strengths and weaknesses in their conformation.  Then, they are asked to walk a 15-meter triangle, and then trot a 30-meter triangle.  Finally, they are asked to stand up one last time for the judge to make their final observations.

After besting the Filly division, Hallelujah DF went on to become the overall champion across the yearling division. We are absolutely thrilled with this filly's success thus far and eagerly look forward to her future.

Hallelujah DF

Monday, October 3, 2016

Fürstenshine DF Takes Top Honors at Oldenburg Inspection

Fürstenshine DF
The very well attended Oldenburg Inspection at Starr Vaughn this September was the debut of Fürstenshine DF, and true to his name, he was the star of the show. He is by Europe's most sensational sire, Fürstenball, and out of America's impeccably bred Thoroughbred, Lady's Comet. In his very first outing off of the farm, the precocious colt showed his correct conformation, brilliant movement, and star quality with gusto.


Both mare and colt were presented and Lady's Comet was entered into the Main Mare Book (she is also  Main Mare Book Premium for Holsteiners), and both greatly impressed judge, Helmut Schrant. Out of the 14 foals presented that day, 9 were colts. Fürstenshine was the only colt that made Premium and was ultimately awarded the Champion High Score Foal tricolor. Judge Schrant commented to the crowd about the quality of both of these fine examples from Dragonfire.

Young "Shawn" handled the long day with ease and pleasure, showing his great character and willing temperament. He is the "whole package", as they say, and the sky is certainly the limit for this elegant young colt. Owned by Elizabeth Thieriot, he will make an impact in any arena.





Monday, September 26, 2016

Congratulations Traynham Family!

Highland Empress as a two year old
Congratulations to the Traynham Family of Timber Ranch on their selection of Highland Empress as their foundation broodmare for their breeding program. There simply aren't better bloodlines than hers for the purpose of eventing and this proven producer of champions will certainly be the cornerstone of a very successful program.

Highland Empress is by MASTER IMP, OUT OF A CAVALIER ROYALE/CLOVER HILL MARE,  a combination of Ireland’s very best blood, with close up relations including William Micklem’s stallion, Jackeroo, Zara Phillips’ High Kingdom,  Karen O’Connor’s Mandiba, Clayton Fredrick’s Ben Along Time, Mary King’s Imperial Cavalier, and Tiana Coudray’s Ringwood Magister.

She is currently in foal to The Twain, our Nation’s best bred Thoroughbred stallion for Eventing. The Twain is by Green Dancer, who was a stakes winner in France, winning the French Classic before retiring to stud. He went on to Kentucky for breeding, where he sired many million dollar winners, as well as steeplechase stars. Green Dancer was named the French Leading Sire in 1991. The Twain brings the blood of NIJINSKY to the front of his papers as his grandsire. During Nijinsky’s brilliant career, he became an English Triple Crown winner, set a European earnings record, was Europe’s Horse of the Year in 1970, and was syndicated for a world-record price. He was historically important for establishing the international reputation of his sire, Northern Dancer. Retired to stud at Claiborne Farm in Kentucky, Nijinsky was the Leading Sire in Great Britain, Ireland and eventually the Leading Broodmare Sire in North America. Sir Tristram, sire of The Twain’s dam, was the greatest Thoroughbred stud in New Zealand racing history. He was Irish-bred and raced in Ireland, England, France and also in the U.S. in the Kentucky Derby. He was then bought and retired to stud in New Zealand, where he sired over 140 stakes winners and an extraordinary 45 group one winners, including three Melbourne Cup winners. One of the most sought after performance sire lines of modern day breeding, Sir Tristram’s influence has been incredibly widespread, particularly in International Show Jumping and Eventing. THE TWAIN IS DIRECTLY RELATED TO OVER 40 RECENT WEG, OLYMPIC, AND 4**** TOP TEN FINISHERS.

We are very pleased to be a part of this mare's future and the breeding program at Timber Ranch. We know that there will be exciting years ahead for Young Rider, Megan Traynham, and the future super stars her family will be bringing along!

Monday, September 19, 2016

Video Update: Fürstenshine DF

Got CANTER? Fürstenshine DF has plenty!

We are excited to bring you this video update of Fürstenshine DF. This 2016 Oldenburg colt is by the one and only Fürstenball and out of Lady's Comet xx by the famed Thoroughbred stallion, Comet Shine.

Fürstenball´s pedigree enjoys an influx of blood further down in the pedigree with Holstein and thoroughbred genes. He won his licensing and stallion performance test, was regional and national champion of Germany, sire of champion stallions, winner of S level dressage classes, 2013 VTV stallion of the year, and number 1 of the FN breeding valuation throughout Germany in 2015 - it is hard to do better at such a young age! With his first crop, Fürstenball had already produced the champion stallion and top price (400.000 euros) of the 2012 Oldenburg Stallion Days, Follow Me. Up to now, 34 sons of Fürstenball have been licensed, often awarded with premiums and some of them sold for record prices. He was champion of his licensing, with a sensational154.98 points in the dressage index (16 x 9.0 and better, as well as 10.0 for rideability) and with a jumping score of 113.65 to best the field of 44 stallions.  He was Champion of the German national championships of five-year-old dressage horses in 2011. He won the Championship with top marks: 9.5 for trot and overall impression, 10.0 for walk. 9.0 for canter and suppleness. Prior to that, he became Oldenburg regional champion with a mark of 9.1. In 2012, he put his quality again to the test with high placings at the regional and German national championship and at the World Championships of six-year-old dressage horses. In 2013, he won his first advanced level/ Prix St. Georges competitions.

Fürstenshine's dam, Lady's Comet,  was a winning USEA YEH Four Year Old before beginning her career as a broodmare. Although, it is her famous brother, Courageous Comet, that makes this cross so exciting. One of America's best and brightest eventers of all time, Courageous Comet, came from the track and  propelled himself to international fame with Becky Holder. The team represented the Untied States in both World Equestrian Games and the Olympics, as well as winning the American Eventing Championships. Lady's Comet was just recently accepted into the American Holsteiner's Main Mare Book as a Premium Mare.

Owned by Elizabeth Thieriot, this truly special individual combines the very best of his winning family before him, and exudes the class it takes to be dominate in today's sport world.





Friday, September 9, 2016

Dragonfire Breeding Program Excels at The 2016 Northern California AHHA Inspections

Dragonfire was proud to host this year's Northern California American Holsteiner Inspections, where the top two young horses bore the DF suffix, and several Premium and Merit Mares and Foals from Dragonfire were recognized. Many of the area's breeders presented their stock and it was a delight to see the diversity in foals and mares within this beautiful breed.

Chosen One DF with his dam, Colombia
Chosen One DF was the highest scoring foal of the day and was named a Premium Foal, with the comment from the judge that "this is the exact type we are trying to breed for". By Coconut Grove xx and out of a Diarado/Cassini II mare, "Uno" has a plethora of Grand Prix Show Jumpers behind him and will no doubt be an impressive jumper as he matures. He is beautifully smooth across the top line, and has a balanced and expressive way of going. His temperament is kind and respectful, making him a very exciting prospect for the future.

Chosen One DF
Incantare DF
Incantare DF boasts superior bloodlines for world class Eventing with a very high dosage of Thoroughbred blood. Her sire, Mighty Magic is 3/4 blood, being by the full TB sire, Mytens xx, and out of a Holsteiner mare by the legendary Heraldik xx.  "Candy" is out of the full Thoroughbred mare Crimson Twain DF xx, who is by the very impressively bred Thoroughbred stallion, The Twain. In fact, Incantare DF, has very similar lines to Eventing legend and two time Olympic Gold Medalist, La Biosthetique Sam, ridden by the incomparable Michael Jung. This Merit Filly has a heart the size of Texas and will certainly have the fortitude to contest the world's toughest tracks in the future.

Incantare DF

Hallelujah DF
Hallelujah DF was the only other youngster of the day to match the high score of Chosen One DF. Her larger-than-life personality makes her a real eye catcher, as she takes full command of any ring she is in. This yearling filly was recognized as a Premium and was highly admired by the judge and spectators. She is a half sibling to both Chosen One and Incantare, being by Mighty Magic and out of Colombia. Her floating movement, confidence and style,  and jumping background should make her very successful in any sport she enters.

Hallelujah DF
Lady's Comet xx
Lady's Comet xx was presented and entered into the American Holsteiner's Main Mare Book as a Premium. By the late and great Comet Shine, she has several members in her family that have been highly successful as eventers. She was shown with her Oldenburg colt, Fürstenshine DF, at her side, who will be presented later this month at the Oldenburg testing.

Lady's Comet xx with her Oldenburg colt, Fürstenshine DF

Colombia
Also receiving Premium status in the Main Mare Book, was Colombia (aka Cheerleader DF). By Diarado and out of a Cassini II mare, "Kitty" showed just how strong her family lines are by quietly but very easily jumping out of the arena, twice! She showed a great natural eye and impeccable form during her impromptu jumping display.

Colombia


Crimson Twain DF xx
Another full Thoroughbred that entered into the Holsteiner's Main Mare Book was Crimson Twain DF. Dam of Incantare DF, "Cherry" offers very valuable blood through her sire, The Twain, to improve and lighten lines.

Vanity
The successful former 1* Event mare, Vanity, also entered into the Main Mare Book. By Liostro and out of a Sabotage mare, Vanity has the "greats" of Holsteiner breeding up close in her pedigree.

Ducati
The Merit foal, Ducati, is purpose bred for eventing and has the willing attitude required for the rigors of upper level training. By Dolany and out of the newly minted Premium Mare, Apple of Sam's Eye xx, this colt is smooth, balanced, and very good natured. He has a bright future ahead of him with owner, Cori Davis. 

Photos by Nancy Dein

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Video Update: Impress DF


We are very pleased to bring you this video update of Impress DF. This 2016 filly is out of Highland Empress is by MASTER IMP, OUT OF A CAVALIER ROYALE/CLOVER HILL MARE,  a combination of Ireland’s very best blood, with close up relations including William Micklem’s stallion, Jackeroo, Zara Phillips’ High Kingdom,  Karen O’Connor’s Mandiba, Clayton Fredrick’s Ben Along Time, Mary King’s Imperial Cavalier, and Tiana Coudray’s Ringwood Magister.

Her sire is The Twain, our Nation’s best bred Thoroughbred stallion for Eventing. The Twain is by Green Dancer, who was a stakes winner in France, winning the French Classic before retiring to stud. He went on to Kentucky for breeding, where he sired many million dollar winners, as well as steeplechase stars. Green Dancer was named the French Leading Sire in 1991. The Twain brings the blood of NIJINSKY to the front of his papers as his grandsire. During Nijinsky’s brilliant career, he became an English Triple Crown winner, set a European earnings record, was Europe’s Horse of the Year in 1970, and was syndicated for a world-record price. He was historically important for establishing the international reputation of his sire, Northern Dancer. Retired to stud at Claiborne Farm in Kentucky, Nijinsky was the Leading Sire in Great Britain, Ireland and eventually the Leading Broodmare Sire in North America. Sir Tristram, sire of The Twain’s dam, was the greatest Thoroughbred stud in New Zealand racing history. He was Irish-bred and raced in Ireland, England, France and also in the U.S. in the Kentucky Derby. He was then bought and retired to stud in New Zealand, where he sired over 140 stakes winners and an extraordinary 45 group one winners, including three Melbourne Cup winners. One of the most sought after performance sire lines of modern day breeding, Sir Tristram’s influence has been incredibly widespread, particularly in International Show Jumping and Eventing. THE TWAIN IS DIRECTLY RELATED TO OVER 40 RECENT WEG, OLYMPIC, AND 4**** TOP TEN FINISHERS.

Owned by Dayna Lynd-Pugh, we are eagerly looking forward to what the future holds for this super star of a filly!

 

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