Friday, December 28, 2018

Foundation Sire: Laudanum

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

162 cm
Breeder: André Laurans

Laudanum was the first stallion purchased by French breeder Bernard le Courtois, who syndicated him at the end of 1984. At that stage, Laudanum’s oldest progeny were five and he was far from popular with the breeders – standing near Bordeaux, he had only bred nine mares! Le Courtois moved him to Normandy at the Haras de la Gisloterie, before moving to his own stud at Brullemail. In an article in the 1996 edition of the Annuaire de l’Étalon Sport Français, Bernard le Courtois explains what attracted him to the stallion:

“Laudanum’s pedigree has two assets – first of all his sire Boran had produced several good Thoroughbred jumpers before being used to cross-breed towards the end of his career. He was himself a son of the very remarkable Mourne, a foundation sire in his own right of sport horses, although he himself was never cross-bred but only bred to Thoroughbred mares. Mourne was the sire of Alcatraz (N. Pessoa), Croquette (G. de Balanda), Alistro, Shel Tox… The second asset in Laudanum’s pedigree is his 3 x 3 inbreeding with the famous broodmare Ballynash (by Nasrullah, one of the best sons of Nearco with Royal Charger). Ballynash is none other than the dam of Mourne (by Vieux Manoir) as well as that of Montaval (by Norseman), Laudanum’s two grandsires!”

“Laudanum has been an exemplary success as a stud. The first generation of his offspring, born in 1979, only numbered 13, but amongst which we find the two Grand Prix horses, Nashville 111, and Neurine. In 1980, with only five foals born, there are again two Grand Prix winners, Obéron du Moulin and Odanum (now in Brazil) both of which were still winning in 1995… Laudanum’s offspring are brave, careful not to touch the jump, with excellent temperaments, qualities which make them admirable national level amateur horses, and with regularly some of Grand Prix level.”

Despite his death in 1997, Laudanum was in 2002, the leading sire of showjumpers in the United States, with six of his progeny competing in 2001 for winnings of $228,259 – mostly won by the stallion Oh Star ridden by USA Games Team reserve team member Todd Minikus. The Belgian bred Oh Star (out of a mare by Ramiro) finished second behind Margie Goldstein Eagle’s Hidden Creek’s Perin on the money rankings on the 2001 US Grand Prix jumper circuit. Oh Star’s wins include the $50,000 HITS Grand Prix, the $100,000 USET Championship, the $50,000 Rio Vista Grand Prix, the $25,000 Bentley Motorcars Grand Prix and the $175,000 Cargill Grand Prix. Other good performers in the USA include the Selle Français stallion Elu de la Hardière ridden by Candice King whose successes include the Elizabeth II Cup at Hickstead and Eric Lamaze’s Ezior Danum, a consistent performer on the US and Canadian circuits.

On the WBFSH standings from 1992-2001 Laudanum ranked 71st, with 21 international performers in that period. In 2007, he is still ranked 42nd on the WBFSH standings.

Laudanum was represented at the Athens Olympic Games by the stallion First de Launay.

Laudanum is the dam sire of Jaguar Mail – who is by the Thoroughbred stallion Hand in Glove out of a mare by Laudanum, out of an Almé / Gotthard mare. In the 2007 Sires of the World Final at Lanaken, Jaguar Mail beat a field of 42 licensed sires to take the title. Jaguar Mail was started in the sport by Patrice Delaveau but moved to Sweden where he is ridden by Peter Eriksson who rode him at the 2008 Olympic Games and the 2010 WEG. He is now standing in the United Kingdom.

Jaguar Mail has since proven an excellent sire of eventers, and his son Tenareze won the 2013 World Young Eventing Horse six-year-old title and the 2014 seven-year-old title.

In the survey of the world’s top 75 jumping sires which appears in the French publication, Monneron 2007-2008, compiled by Bernard le Courtois, Laudanum ranks 43rd with 7 CSI winners. He is also represented by his son Oberon du Moulin (out of an Invincible mare) who is 65th with 7 CSI winners.

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Laudanum's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are several stallion descendants of Laudanum in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Friday, December 21, 2018

Sir Sinclair #1 Dressage Sire for an Incredible Fourth Consecutive Year

Iron Spring Farm Stallions Ranked 1, 2, 3 Among 800 USEF Dressage Sires

Sir Sinclair, Keur. Terri Miller photo

Coatesville, PA--- Iron Spring Farm's Sir Sinclair, Keur, was the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF) #1 Sire of Dressage Horses for an incredible fourth consecutive year (2015-2018). Sir's offspring earned 10,681 points in dressage competitions throughout the year, more than 4,000 points ahead of the second place stallion, Contango, Preferent, who is also owned by Iron Spring. Sir's impressive achievement was made possible by 72 sons and daughters earning points, including 27 offspring competing at FEI, with four at Grand Prix. Rounding out the remarkable year for the Iron Spring stallions, UB40, Keur, finished third among more than 800 ranked dressage sires in 2018. All three ISF stallions were also ranked in the Top 100 FEI dressage sires by the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses.

From Grand Prix to Training Level, Sir's superstar offspring brought home big scores.

Dee Clair
 had six top-six finishes with rider Anna Marek in the CDI3* Grand Prix classes during the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, with scores as high as 70.500%. Dee Clair is owned by Diane Morrison and was bred by Dr. Ruth Sorensen.
Caymus continued his successful FEI career in 2018. The bay gelding, bred and owned by Beth Godwin, was named to the 2018 Developing Horse List. With rider Jodie Kelly, Caymus finished third in the small tour division at the U.S. Festival of Champions. The pair also were Intermediate Freestyle champions in the Adequan USDF All Breeds Award (KWPN-NA).
Eschaton won 15 Third and Fourth Level classes with scores as high as 74.744% in 2018. The grey gelding also claimed two GAIG/USDF Regional Championships: Third Level Amateur and Adult Equitation with owner/rider Casey Blum. The pair claimed the USDF Third Level Amateur Horse of the Year, as well as first place in the Adequan USDF All Breeds Awards (KWPN-NA) in the same division. Eschaton was bred by at Providence Farm by Linda Smith.
Imperial WRF had 18 wins at Training and First Level with scores to 78.363%. With owner/rider Alexandra du Celliee Muller, the gelding won the GAIG/USDF Region 4 Reserve Championship with a 74.205%. Imperial WRF was bred by Judy Reggio.

Contango and UB40 Round Out Remarkable 2018 Rankings   
Contango, Preferent, and UB40's offspring also had an extraordinary 2018.

Contango finished the year ranked #2 USEF Sire of Dressage Horses, with 41 offspring earning points, including 7 showing at Grand Prix. Highlights featured international star Alcazar, ridden by Katherine Bateson-Chandler, who won the CDI3* Grand Prix Special at Adequan Global Dressage Festival 5. The black gelding had six additional top-three finishes during the Global circuit. Faberge Blue, ridden by Michael Bragdell, continued his winning ways in the small tour classes and moved up to the Developing Horse Grand Prix division.

UB40's sons and daughters did their father proud in 2018. They won two championships at the U.S. Dressage Finals, plus four championships and eight reserve championships at the GAIG/USDF Regional Championships. Eye Candy, owned and ridden by Amy Gimbel, was Champion Fourth Level Amateur Freestyle with a 71.467% at the U.S. Dressage Finals. The pair also finished as Reserve Champions in the Fourth Level Amateur division. Hana, owned and ridden by Laura Crowl, won the Second Level Amateur Championship with a 71.585% at the U.S. Dressage Finals, along with regional championships at second and third level. Among UB40's 47 point earners, 12 competed at FEI, including two at Grand Prix.
For the latest updates, photos and videos, please visit the Iron Spring Farm Facebook page and
About Iron Spring Farm
A range of top Friesian and KWPN stallions are available to North American breeders as part of Iron Spring Farm's four-decade commitment to the ISF American Advantage. By providing proven bloodlines, along with exceptional service, transparency and impeccable veterinary care, the ISF team helps breeders achieve their sport horse goals. Ongoing expert advice and tools are also available so breeders can develop and market their offspring to the highest level. Iron Spring also offers a select number of talented Friesian and Dutch Warmblood prospects and broodmares for sale. Visit for more information.

Saturday, December 15, 2018

theHorse: Sexing Foals, Mare Immune Systems, ET Techniques, a website that specializes in making recent scientific news available to the equine public, has released new articles on a few topics of interest to breeders. We suggest:

Determining Equine Fetal Sex in Mid-Gestation

Researchers have confirmed that, by following a few recently described steps, veterinarians can sex fetuses over a much longer time period than previously thought and without clipping or sedating mares.

How Mare Immune Systems Respond to Breeding

While some species develop a local immune response, sending special protective cells to the uterus itself, mares don’t, researchers learned recently. Rather, they appear to send those cells elsewhere as soon as semen enters the uterus. Where they go, nobody knows (yet).

Equine Embryo Transfer Techniques Compared

Researchers identified a 90% pregnancy rate in mares impregnated using the Wilsher embryo transfer technique and a 70% pregnancy rate in mares treated using traditional embryo transfer protocols.

Friday, December 14, 2018

15 New Licensed Stallions for Hannover

12 December 2018

Verden. 24 stallions were presented in Verden for the Hannoveraner Verband’s licensing. 15 of them were licensed or approved for Hannover. Ten of the presented stallions were born in 2016. Half of them were licensed, three were awarded with a premium.

The young stallions presented themselves in an excellent manner at the licensing. Five out of the two-and-a-half-year-old stallions shown in the Niedersachsenhalle were licensed, three left the Niedersachsenhalle with a premium title. The first stallion already made a good start. The chestnut by Carridam/Loredo, who is bred and owned by the Dr. Jacobs GbR, Bierbergen, was licensed and awarded with a premium title. He convinced the licensing committee with his ability and caution at the jumps. Cuckoo van de Kattevennen by H. Cornet´s Boy/Cheenook (breeder and exhibitor: Hengststation Ferienhof Stücker, Weeze) also convinced the commission with his very good jumping performance. He received the positive licensing result and was awarded a premium. The celebrated Champion Stallion of the Westphalian Licensing also faced the judgement of the licensing commission in the Niedersachsenhalle. A few weeks ago, the Dancier/Floriscount-son (breeder: ZG Broers u. Weber, Aurich) was auctioned off for 700,000 Euro and sold to the owner community Schockemöhle/Helgstrand Dressage. In Verden, the black stallion presented himself with great diligence and a natural grandeur, which was rewarded with licensing and the premium title.

The next stallion licensing in the Niedersachsenhalle will take place on Tuesday, 22 January. Info and results:

Adrienne Lyle and Harmony’s Duval Awarded The Dressage Foundation’s $25,000 Anne Ramsay Grant

December 7, 2018 – The Dressage Foundation has announced that Adrienne Lyle and Harmony’s Duval have been selected to receive this year’s $25,000 Anne L. Barlow Ramsay Grant. The purpose of the Grant is to showcase talented American-bred horses ridden by United States citizens, by providing money to train and compete in Europe.
Harmony’s Duval was bred by Harmony Sporthorses in Kiowa, Colorado, and is owned by Duval Partners LLC. 2016 was the first season at the CDI small tour level for Lyle and Duval, which culminated in a third-place finish at the USEF Festival of Champions. Duval continued developing and won his first national Grand Prix. The tall grey gelding has been accepted into the USEF Developing Program. Lyle and Duval will use the funds to travel to Europe in the summer of 2019 for training and competition. [Editor's note: Harmony's Duval is by Rousseau out of Uptown Girl by Riverman.]

Adrienne Lyle and Harmony's Duval
Adrienne Lyle and Harmony’s Duval

“I am incredibly honored to receive the Anne Ramsay Grant from The Dressage Foundation!” Lyle said. “This wonderful grant will make it possible for me to showcase Harmony’s Duval, an American bred Grand Prix horse, in Europe next summer. It is imperative that our horses get exposure in Europe if they want to be top contenders, but the costs of traveling and competing over there would be inhibitive without the support and generosity of people like Anne Ramsay, who have a desire to help American dressage grow and succeed on the world stage.”
Dr. Ramsay’s passion and support of U.S.-bred dressage horses is exceptional. Through a Charitable Remainder Unitrust that she established with The Dressage Foundation in 1999, she created a Fund to provide these $25,000 grants. From 2008-2014, five horse and rider teams each received $25,000 to travel to Europe for training and competition.
Past Winners:
2008: James Koford and Rhett, bred by Shirley McQuillan
2009: Jennifer Williams and H.S. Wistar, bred by Charlene Summers
2011: Liz Austin and Olivier, bred by Madeleine Austin
2012: Lisa Wilcox and Pikko de Cerro HU, bred by Anne Sparks
2014: Emily Miles and WakeUp, bred by Beverly McLean
In 2009, Dr. Ramsay established a second Unitrust to extend the impact of the grants for many years into the future. Those funds are designated to come to TDF in 2019, but Dr. Ramsay made a generous gift to ensure that the grant could be awarded in 2018, as well.
For more information about the Anne L. Barlow Ramsay Grant or The Dressage Foundation, please contact Jenny Johnson at (402) 434-8585, by email at, or visit

Foundation Sire: Almé

Here is the next installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday.  Every other Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. We pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

165 cm
Breeder: Alphonse Chauvin

Almé was by the great French stallion Ibrahim out of Girondine. Almé’s dam, Girondine, was a daughter of the Irish-bred Thoroughbred, Ultimate, and as well as Almé, she also produced his three full-brothers, all licensed stallions or successful jumpers. 

In the 2003 edition of Annuaire Monneron, Bernard le Courtois, has this to say about the present influence of Almé, describing him as "father of world breeding":

“It is obviously no surprise to see that the line of Ibrahim is influential in French breeding. Almé’s line is becoming increasingly important in many great breeding countries as could be seen during the World Championship in Jerez 2002. I have received from the USA an analysis of the results, which I find interesting and would like to share with you. Among the 92 horses participating, the division between the sexes is relatively well balanced: 32 uncastrated males, not all of them stallions, 34.8%; 31 geldings, 33.7%; and 29 mares, 31.5%. Five stallions had more than one product: Quidam de Revel (5), Capitol I (4), Le Tot de Sémilly (3), Robin Z and Touchdown (2 each). Quidam, Robin and Touchdown are grandsons of Almé and 21 horses in the event (22.3%) were descendants of Almé. At the end of the speed class and of the Nations Cup we could count among the Top 25: 10 stallions, 7 geldings and 8 mares; 9 of them came from Almé (36%). When we arrive at the Top 10 (after two rounds of the individual championships) we find ourselves with four stallions, one gelding and four mares, four of them from Almé (40%). The four horses in the final (where the riders swapped horses) comprised one stallion and three mares, three of them from Almé, 75%! If we were to draw some preliminary, hasty, but nonetheless interesting conclusions we might suggest that if we want to produce horses of high quality the best way would be to invest in mares coming from our leader of the dynasty, Almé. One thing is sure and certain, and that is that Almé remains a valuable asset in the pedigrees of our sport horses. And everything comes together when we remember that the best six-year-old in Europe this year – Mozart des Hayettes – had Almé twice in his pedigree.”

In the 2007-2008 edition of Monneron, Bernard le Courtois, after spending many hours on his computer, produced a list of the top 75 jumping stallions in the world, based on the FEI list of the top 2515 jumping horses in international competition. This survey once again confirms Almé’s pride of place, for he is responsible for 17 of the 57 leading stallions on the leaderboard. Four of these stallions are by Jalisco, the most important of which is Quidam de Revel, who heads the standings with 48 representatives. Quidam himself already has two of his sons on the leader board, Nabab de Reve and Guidam. Another Jalisco son, Papillon Rouge, is ranked equal sixth in the world with 26 winners. Jalisco B, despite his death at a relatively young 19 years of age, is in 30th place on the leaderboard with 10 representatives.

Almé was also influential in Germany and The Netherlands. His grandson Acord II (by Ahorn Z) is in 13th place with 16 winners. In Holland, Almé’s son Animo is 19th with 12 winners. Animo’s son Andiamo Z is ranked 64th with 5 winners.

There was further Almé influence through another son, Jalisco, sire of Quidam de Revel, in turn the sire of Dollar de la Pierre, sire of Rebozo. Quidam was also the sire of Nabab de Reve, sire of silver medalist London. 

To read the entire article, with pedigree, details of Almé's sons and daughters, on the Horse Magazine website, click here.
There are several stallion descendants of Almé in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

Thursday, December 13, 2018

British Dressage Young Horse Forums 2019

British Dressage has announced a return of the popular Young Horse Forums this winter. The Forums have two regular speakers and also guest experts, and present an array of topics on bringing along 4-, 5-, 6-, and 7-year-old youngsters. The goal is correct training to produce the "stars of the future," and includes both evaluation and training sessions.

Click for more information.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Improved Equine Genetic Map Released

Researchers have been working to improve our knowledge of equine DNA, and this research will ultimately have an influence on how we breed. If you're interested in following the discoveries, here's one for you to read. has posted an edited report on new discoveries about the horse's genome, the "map researchers will use to determine the role inherited genes and other regions of DNA play in many horse diseases and traits important in equine science and management."

To read more, click here.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

WBFSH Sire Rankings 2018 Released

The World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses has released its list of top sires for dressage, show jumping, and eventing. Below is the teaser info with the top ten in each category. There's a link at the bottom of the page to the WBFSH site for more information.

The brackets indicate the sire’s ranking position in 2017.

Rolex WBFSH Top 10 Dressage Sire Ranking

1 (1) DE NIRO - 22871
2 (2) SANDRO HIT - 19850
3 (3) RUBIN-ROYAL - 18237
4 (5) JAZZ - 14154
5 (6) DON FREDERICO - 12783
6 (12) JOHNSON - 12783
7 (11) DIAMOND HIT - 9459
8 (43) SAN REMO - 9456
9 (21) DIMAGGIO - 9423
10 (8) STEDINGER - 8635
Rolex WBFSH Top 10 Show Jumping Sire Ranking

1 (1) CHACCO-BLUE – 31387
2 (2) DIAMANT DE SEMILLY - 19405
3 (5) CASALL - 14831
4 (4) CORNET OBOLENSKY - 12985
6 (10) BERLIN (CASPAR) - 12024
7 (16) TOULON - 10943
8 (13) CARDENTO - 9819
9 (9) BALOU DU ROUET - 8500
10 (12) NABAB DE REVE - 8379

Rolex WBFSH Top 10 Eventing Sire Ranking

1 (1) CONTENDRO I - 1298
2 (2) JAGUAR MAIL - 1247
3 (11) COURAGE II - 1137
4 (9) BALOU DU ROUET - 1042
5 (10) GRAFENSTOLZ - 702
6 (4) RAMIRO B - 642
7 (6) HERALDIK XX - 608
8 (3) MASTER IMP XX - 550
9 (24) CONTENDER - 521
10 (12) JUMBO - 485
Please visit the WBFSH website for the complete rankings, the top 100, how they rankings are calculated, and more. Click here.

WFFS Testing Mandatory in German and More EU News

Eurodressage has posted a report today that includes news of interest to breeders worldwide. The report was on the results of a special meeting of the German Equestrian Federation just held, to address some of the new animal regulations adopted by the European Union. Three decisions were in the report, but the most significant for North American breeders concerns WFFS.

The first new ruling is that Germany will have mandatory testing for Warmblood Fragile Foal Syndrome in 2019. This was prompted by the EU's new requirement for testing for genetic defects, with which Germany, as a member of the EU, must comply. This has significance to any breeder wishing to breed to German stallions. Many German registries and individual stallion owners have so far been reluctant to require testing, which puts mare owners in a bind. Many mare owners around the world would prefer to avoid the risk of delivering a foal with WFFS. They have tested their own mares, but this is only half the information they need. In order to safely breed a positive mare, they need to know that the stallion is not a carrier. It's an important step forward that all German stallions will be required to provide that information in 2019.

Other decisions addressed the status of stallions tested at the Czech Republic State Stud, and the opening of a stallion performance testing station at the State Stud of Marbach.

Read the eurodressage article here.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Hyperion Stud, LLC - Breeding Discounts

🌟Interested in breeding your next superstar?🌟

Now is your chance to save some 💲 money this breeding season. We offer discounts for early booking, return clients, premium / sport record mares and more. Visit the link below for more details.
Hyperion Stud represents 30+ international quality stallions and we are always happy to consult with mare owners to help them make the best stallion selections for their mare(s).

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Article Publicly Available: Changing stallion behaviour may come at a risk!

Breeding News for Sporthorses has opened on of their recent articles to the public. "Changing stallion behaviour may come at a risk!" was published on November 30 and sparked a lot of interest. It was originally accessible only to subscribers, but Breeding News generously opened it to be available to anyone. 

The article, by Cindy Reich, deals with the topic of using drugs to control stallion behavior for competition, and their long-term effects. In the article, and also in some discussions on social media prompted by the article, the use of Regumate in mares was also addressed. 

Bottom line: we like to think that controlling unwanted behavior by drugs is temporary and without long-term consequences - but that's not the reality.

Read the full Breeding News article - click here.