By Owner - Cheryl Mitchell
Samaii, or Stevie as he is known at home, was very keen to get into the world, being 30 days early! He is by our 100 day tested coloured stallion Sambertino out of Elite Berolina, who completed her mare performance test in Germany before being sold through the Hanoverian auction in Verden - he was her second foal. Her first foal, a colt by Sandro Hit, Santano, we sold to Katrina Cantrell Bennet who graded him BWBS where he was Reserve Champion Stallion.
At just 10 weeks old Samaii had his first outing, which was to the Brightwells foal show at Addington, where he placed 7th in the Dressage colt section.
As a yearling he was very ably shown by Dinah Webb-Bowen. He placed every time out including 2nd at the Royal Show in the combined 1 & 2 yr old warmblood class and 2nd in the yearling colt class at the British Dressage Breeding Championships at Addington (left).
In 2005 the BEF Futurity had recently come into being, the format was slightly different then, with horses being placed in their age group/discipline class.
Stevie won the dressage yearling class with a First Premium (2nd place and a First Premium was awarded to another Sambertino colt, who is now a graded SPSS stallion).
In the BEF End of the Year awards he placed 3rd in the Owner/Breeder category - this doesn’t seem to exist anymore?
In Samaii’s 2nd year he went to Ecki Wahlers at Gestüt WM in Germany to be with our other boys to be prepared for licensing. I thought the chance of his being successfully licensed was a bit of a long shot as coloureds are not popular in Germany (when Sambertino first went out to Ecki people specifically came to the yard to watch him ride the cow!). Unfortunately Samaii missed the Oldenburg Licensing Selections that Winter due to a virus, so the following Spring we presented him to ZfdP.
Here much to our delight he was licensed into their Deutsches Reitpferd Hengstbook I- ZfdP’s top studbook. He thus became the first British Bred coloured stallion to license in Germany! He was also awarded a stallion Premium - 1 of only 2 stallions to be awarded this by ZfdP in 2007.
He was backed as a 3yr old after the licensing & on his first outing, was Champion of a 3 & 4 yr old Materiale class - so a very good start!
Later in 2007 he went to Neustadt Dosse for his 30 day test where he gained a Dressage score of 8.18, placing him 8th for dressage against some very smart stallions by Sandro Hit, Diamond Hit, Contender & Argentinus, as well as Licensing Champions - which was brilliant!! This testing centre is near Berlin & part of the Brandenburg State Stud, which is a very large facility spread over about 400 hectares - their state stallions which include Quarterback & the Samba Hits are based here.
That winter Samaii was presented to the Oldenburg Verband and was also approved for breeding with them as well as being accepted by Westfalen, Rhineland, Danish Warmblood & all South German studbooks.
As a 4 year old he competed successfully with Ecki in Novice dressage classes with wins & high placings, scoring up to 80%, which maintained his breeding license for a further year.
This year, as a 5 year old, he won & placed at Elementary (L) level & so far, he has always been the only coloured at all of his competitions - he usually raises a smile as he goes down the centre line!! This was the same when Sambertino was competing there - coloured horses are sometimes seen in jumping, or eventing competitions, but are very rare in Dressage.
Last week he completed the final stage of his lifetime breeding approval at his 70 day test at Neustadt Dosse, placing 7th out of 29 stallions for Dressage. He is now back with Ecki and training over the winter for competing at the next level & hopefully onwards and upwards!!!
Samaii’s first two foal crops have been very positively reviewed by the Oldenburg & ZfdP inspection judges with a high proportion of them being awarded Premiums.
At the 2009 ZfdP National Pinto mare & foal show last month two filly foals qualified, placing 1st & 3rd, with 1st place taking Reserve Champion Foal & the mare who won Best in Show is in foal to Samaii for 2010, so fingers crossed for next year!!
Bay Tobiano Premium Stallion, 16.3hh, Born 2004
Bloodlines: Sambertino x Bretano II x Wenzel II
Approved: Oldenburg Verband, Westfalen, Rhineland, Danish Warmblood & all South German studbooks
Stands: Gestuet WM, Germany
I have put a short description below of the German Warmblood breeding approval process - hopefully it’s accurate!!!
The German Warmblood studbook licensings are all run on a similar format with X-rays & vet report submitted to the studbook before attending the licensing. Stallions be presented for licensing from the age of 2.5 years onwards. It isn’t possible to get covering certificates for unlicensed stallions.
Full lifetime breeding approval requires several stages of assessment, which is usually done in the order of:
30 day test (optional)
70 day test
Other avenues for breeding approval incorporate a 30 day test & Bundeschampionat qualification, or placings at S level in dressage, jumping or eventing.
For licensing each stallion is assessed by:
Presentation in hand on a hard surface for assessment of Conformation, Walk & Trot.
Assessment of loose paces.
Walk ring - this is the final section & horses are brought into the arena singly, or at large licensings in bloodline groups. At the end of this they are called to stand in front of the judges & the announcement is made whether they have licensed or not.
Stallions regarded as exceptional will be awarded Premium at this time.
Licensing will give a 1 year breeding permit
The 30 day test is for 3 year olds & is run at the same centres as the 70 day tests - the choice of centre being made by the stallion owner. Stallions from any studbook are eligible for any centre - most centres run several tests a year. The pass mark for most studbooks for a 30 day test is 7.0.
Each horse is allocated a training rider for the duration of their stay - the riders are permanently employed by the stud & will have several of the stallions to train. The stallions are ridden daily & given points for their character in the stable, attitude to work, rideability, paces etc. which counts towards their final score. On the final two testing days 2 test riders, (1 jumping & 1 dressage) will ride and award marks to all the horses, whilst also being marked by two external judges. The overall score is a combination of all 3 sets of marks & a complicated mathematical formula!! Only flatwork & free jumping is required on the 30 day test.
The 70 day test is similar in that there is again free choice of which centre to use. All horses are ridden in a snaffle bridle & are assessed in ridden paces, free jumping, show jumping, cross country & gallop. This is unlike the KWPN which no longer requires dressage horses to jump.
There are 4 testing days with 2 external judges:
2 testing days are ridden by the training riders - flatwork & cross country.
2 days are with visiting test riders (1 dressage & 1 jumping) - flatwork & showjumping.
Once again the points are awarded by both sets of riders & the judges to give the overall result
This is calculated by quite a complicated mathematical formula, which standardises the average result of each group to 100 points. Stallions who are 5 years + will have 5% of their test score deducted to take into account their extra maturity.
The various studbooks set their own pass mark for acceptance & those who fail to achieve this will have their breeding license revoked until they fulfil their studbook’s performance requirements. For a dressage horse this would usually be placing 1st to 3rd at PSG with a score above a certain %.
This approval process, although it takes several years, is recognised worldwide and is often a requirement for stallions to be accepted for breeding by other studbooks across the world.