The Year of Introspection BY DENISE HEARST
The photo on the cover says it all. This man, and this horse, have changed the landscape of our breed. Today, there is hardly a major breeding program in the world that has not been touched by their gifts. Here is His Highness The Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the founder of Al Shaqab Stud, with one of his most prized creations, the stallion Marwan Al Shaqab (Gazal Al Shaqab x Little Liza Fame).
When the yearling Marwan made his debut at the Qatar International show in 2001, I think all of us who were there that day knew we were looking at a phenomenon and that his sireâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s imprint on the breed would be vast. I suppose you could say the same about Al Shaqabâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s emergence in 1992. We have been following that program ever since, ever in awe. Back in 1992, when His Highness The Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani tapped Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani to bring his vision
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ZIGGY WELLENS PHOTO
A quartet of greatness — the stallions, from left to right, Gazal Al Shaqab (Anaza El Farid x Kajora), WH Justice (Magnum Psyche x Vona Sher-Renea), Marwan Al Shaqab (Gazal Al Shaqab x Little Liza Fame), and Al Adeed Al Shaqab (Ansata Halim Shah x Sundar Alisayyah).
to life, he set in motion the creation of a breeding program the likes of which we may not see again in our lifetimes. And in so doing, His Highness showed us that, where horse breeding is concerned, faith and exquisite taste are more precious than gold. “His Highness the Father Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani gave us a message in the beginning, and that was to bring these horses back to the Arabian Peninsula from all over the world,” says Al Shaqab
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manager Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani. “He asked us to assemble a great broodmare band. When we started, no one else was searching all over the world like that. With the support of HH Sheikh Hamad I sought mares from Egypt, America, and other countries, to bring them back to their homeland.” Among those acquisitions was the mare Kajora (Kaborr x Edjora), who foaled Gazal (by Anaza El Farid) in 1995. “Gazal proved himself. He is a legend. If all he did was to sire Marwan, it would be enough,” says Sheikh Hamad. “But what he did in two seasons in Poland is more than any stallion could be expected to do in a lifetime. He found the perfect mares there. They worked with his blood, and they gave their extra touch, just as Kajora did, with her strong bloodlines, when bred to Anaza El Farid. I think he was the best stallion used in Poland in modern times. He is a stallion that can sire well with a lot of different mares. I’m using him now with some Shaklan blood … who knows, maybe he will sire something new and exciting! “Al Shaqab is the throne of Arabian horses, and we need to continue this. Our possibilities are great. But we know this, too — it is very hard to get to the top, but is harder to stay there.”
Gazal Al Shaqab (Anaza El Farid x Kajora). 5 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
If all he did was to sire Marwan, it would be enough. But what he did in two seasons in Poland is more than any stallion could be expected to do in a lifetime. He found the perfect mares there. They worked with his blood, and they gave their extra touch.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani
Gazal Al Shaqab (Anaza El Farid x Kajora), whose notable wins include 2017 Platinum World Champion Stallion, 2005 U.S. National Reserve Champion Stallion, 2001 World Arabian Champion Stallion, 1999 Middle East International Champion Senior Stallion, 1999 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 1997 U.S. Egyptian Event Champion Colt, and 1996 Qatar International Champion Colt.
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Last year the Al Shaqab show machine was revved up for Wadee Al Marwan Al Shaqab
Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x OFW Mishaahl), with the goal of attaining
(Gazal Al Shaqab x Little Liza
a second world championship title for him, and another record: Marwan
Fame). His major wins include Gold World Champion in 2008, 2002, and 2001; All Nations
Al Shaqab, sire of two sons — Kahil and Wadee — full brothers, who are both Junior and Senior World Champions. Mission accomplished.
Cup Gold Champion in 2008 and 2002; and U.S. National
This year is about regrouping, stepping back, and pausing to consider
Champion in 2005 and 2003.
what’s working and what’s needed. Sheikh Hamad speaks frankly, letting us in on the way a great breeder thinks. “2018 is a year for relaxing a little bit. We have some horses to show, some nice mares, some
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Kahil Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x OFW Mishaahl). His major wins include 2014 World Gold Champion Stallion, 2011 World Gold Champion Junior Stallion, 2011 Junior Champion at Menton, 2011 Qatar International Champion, 2011 Al Khalediah International Champion, 2010 Gold Champion at the All Nations Cup, and 2010 Qatar International Champion.
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yearlings also, but mostly this is the time to move from one step to Wadee Al Shaqab
another step, to improve our breeding program. We need time â&#x20AC;&#x201D; Al
(Marwan Al Shaqab x OFW Mishaahl), was
Shaqab is big, and there are many ideas to consider.â&#x20AC;?
named 2017 World Champion Senior Stallion, 2017 Menton Gold Champion Senior Stallion and Best in Show, four-time Qatar International Gold Champion, 2012 World Gold Champion
Last year Al Shaqab leased the stallions WH Justice (Magnum Psyche x Vona Sher-Renea) and S.M.A. Magic One (Psytadel US x Majidah Bint
Junior Stallion and 2012 Menton Gold
Pacha), and this year Enotri EEA (Shanghai EA x Enjoi E) has been added
Champion Junior Stallion and Best in Show.
to the line-up. They each bring their own flare. We asked Sheikh Hamad
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“We have some horses to show, some nice mares, some yearlings also, but mostly this is the time to move from one step to another step, to improve our breeding program.” — Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani
2018 filly (WH Justice x Cimorene RTA).
2018 colt (WH Justice x OFW Emmalee).
2018 filly (WH Justice x Venetzia).
2018 colt (Marwan Al Shaqab x Durra Al Rayyan). 2018 filly (WH Justice x ZT Maghan). 10 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
2018 filly (WH Justice x Diademah).
2018 filly (WH Justice x Marwa Al Shaqab).
2018 colt (WH Justice x Miskay El Perseus). 2018 filly (Al Rasheed Al Rayyan x Nouf Al Shaqab).
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to share his thoughts on the selection of these stallions.
to our horses, and we use him mostly with Marwan-line
“My thinking was to use more grey stallions — we miss
mares of our breeding. The target is to get the type, along
the light color in Shaqab. The grey color is often linked
with the conformation of Marwan.
to type. We chose WH Justice, because he is an outcross “We used Magic One with Egyptian-related mares, and we used Marwan with straight Egyptian mares. “It’s not easy to talk about this year’s results because the foals are so young, but I am very happy and pleased with
S.M.A. Magic One (Psytadel US x Majidah Bint Pacha), was on lease to Al Shaqab.
WH Justice (Magnum Psyche x Vona Sher-Renea), on lease to Al Shaqab.
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what we are seeing. The results will show up, and we will
He has type and conformation — the most beautiful
hear what people think about it. But I’m very happy with
conformation that you can see. He has the amazing
the first step. It’s a new type in Shaqab; an increase of type.
eyes and beautiful head, and these things you can’t find in many stallions. Fadi’s sire, Besson Carol, is an outcross,
“Enotri EEA has never been proven as a stallion. But I
so I can use him with the Marwan daughters. His dam,
like Shanghai EA so much, and we tried to find a horse
Abha Myra (Marwan Al Shaqab x ZT Ludjkalba), is one of
by Shanghai EA who also had a very strong dam. Enotri’s
the most beautiful mares you will ever see. She excels in
dam is by Enzo. And I like Enzo because his conformation
producing mares and stallions. So Fadi Al Shaqab comes
is very strong. We’re using Enotri mostly for the type,
from strength on both sides.”
but he also has beautiful conformation and charisma. We expect a lot from him.”
Of the Al Shaqab Egyptian stallions, Sheikh Hamad is excited about a new stallion from Al Rayyan, Al Rasheed
In 2019, Fadi Al Shaqab will be heavily used, according to
Al Rayyan (Ansata Nile Echo x RN Farida). “This horse
Sheikh Hamad. “I love Fadi, he is really an amazing stallion.
has never been used. He had a broken leg and so was
Enotri EEA (Shanghai EA x Enjoi E), on lease to Al Shaqab. 13 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
out of the limelight. He’s an amazing horse, very typey.
“We are using another new stallion in our breeding
I used him on a few mares and it was very successful. I
program, Hilal Al Nakeeb (NK Hafid Jamil x Bint Bint
am very happy with him. Another new Egyptian stallion
Hamamaa) from Mr. Hassanain Al Nakeeb. And we are
is Sinan Al Rayyan (Ansata Sinan x Al Wajba Al Rayyan)
using, from Alaa Al Roumi’s Al Rayah Stud, Bahhei Ezzain
who is at Al Waab now. He sired lots of beautiful foals for
(NK Qaswarah x Dhuha Al Nakeeb). He’s a bay stallion,
Shaqab. I’m very happy with the results we got from these
which I need for the pigment. He’s very typey, too. We
will see the results soon.” Falah Al Shaqab (Fadi Al Shaqab x Joseph Just Emotion), 2018 Scottsdale Unanimous Gold Champion Stallion and 2015 Las Vegas World Cup Gold Champion Colt.
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Fadi Al Shaqab (Besson Carol x Abha Myra), 2017 Las Vegas World Cup Gold Supreme Champion Senior Stallion. Other major show wins include: 2012 Champion Stallion at the Qatar International and Al Khalediah International Arabian Horse Festival, and 2010 Champion Colt at Menton and Al Khalediah.
Dam of Fadi Al Shaqab, Abha Myra (Marwan Al Shaqab x ZT Ludjkalba). 15 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
ZIGGY WELLENS PHOTO
Dam of Hariry Al Shaqab, White Silkk (Dakar El Jamaal x KH First Prize).
Hariry Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x White Silkk), whose notable wins include 2017 U.S. National Champion Senior Stallion, 2017 Scottsdale International Breeders Classic Champion Senior Stallion, 2015 Gold World Champion Stallion, 2015 Menton Gold Champion Stallion, 2013 U.S. National Champion Junior Colt and Champion Three- Year-Old Colt, 2012 U.S. National Champion Colt, and 2012 Scottsdale Champion Colt.
“…the most important thing is not just how long the neck is, or how big a mover. It is type and conformation and all the other qualities that comprise a perfect horse.” — Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani 16 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
But the Egyptian stallion that has Sheikh Hamad’s heart
Shaqab stallions who he felt had not gotten the mares
is World Champion Al Adeed Al Shaqab (Ansata Halim
they deserve. “Yes, there are so many,” he says. “One of
Shah x Sundar Alisayyah), who he describes as a “Gift
them is the chestnut Bashir Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab
x SWF Valencia). He is an amazing stallion, but I cannot find the perfect mares for him in Al Shaqab; I would love
Clearly, Al Shaqab has a deep bench where stallions are
to send him to stand at an outside farm to prove himself.
concerned. We asked Sheikh Hamad if there were Al
We have many stallions that need to go outside and
Al Adeed Al Shaqab (Ansata Halim Shah x Sundar Alisayyah). His notable wins include 2008 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 2005 U.S. Egyptian Event Champion Stallion, 2003 World Champion Stallion, 2003 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 2002 All Nations Cup Champion Stallion, 2002 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 2001 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 2000 Qatar International Champion Stallion, 1999 Middle East International Champion Stallion and 1997 Qatar International Arabian Champion Colt.
Farhoud Al Shaqab (Al Adeed Al Shaqab x Johara Al Shaqab), 2010 U.S. Egyptian Event Supreme Champion Male and Champion Junior Stallion, and 2009 Egyptian Event Europe Reserve Champion Colt. 17 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
prove themselves, and it helps the other breeders, too. We have done that many times, but I need to find safe and good places for them. Faraa Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x GW Natorius Star) was proven in Argentina, and in the U.S., his son, SM Azraff (x LC Psychesfinesse), Scottsdale and U.S. National Champion, was rumored to be the most expensive stallion in the world!â&#x20AC;? As the years have gone by and generations have changed, the composition of the Al Shaqab broodmare band has shifted to Marwan daughters. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Before, we talked about El
Bahhei Ezzain (NK Qaswarah x Dhuha Alnakeeb).
Bashir Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x SWF
GLENN JACOBS PHOTO
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Faraa Al Shaqab (Marwan Al Shaqab x GW Natorius Star), 2018 Qatar International Gold Champion Stallion and 2009 Qatar National Champion Colt.
Shaklan daughters and different bloodlines, but Shaqab has
supporting the Arabian horse in its diversity, and
been improved a lot by the Marwan daughters — we
supporting small breeders, owners and riders in as many
are very happy to have these nice mares from Marwan,”
European countries as possible,” he says. ”Al Shaqab
says Sheikh Hamad. “They have the most beautiful
understands the need for also supporting the smaller
conformation that you can see. The only thing they need
shows and sport events with sponsorship funds and
is some type and little touches. I am very happy to work
gifting breedings to our world-famous stallions. The united
with this bloodline.”
love and desire to preserve the Arabian horse breed and share this passion with like-minded people drives us to
But it is not only in the breeding barn that Al Shaqab is
take on this enormous task. Shows and sport events are
making its mark. Sheikh Hamad feels a sense of urgency
a great place to talk, share experiences and meet new
to enhance the show experience for small breeders
people, reuniting us all with one common denominator:
and owners. “The Al Shaqab European Tour is all about
our treasure, the Arabian horse.
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“Shaqab has been improved a lot by the Marwan daughters — we are very happy to have these nice mares from Marwan.” — Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani
Haifa Al Shaqab (Gazal Al Shaqab x WN Six of Hearts). Amina Al Shaqab
(Al Adeed Al Shaqab x Amwaj
(Imperial Al Kamar x Sundar Alisayyah), two-time Middle
East International Champion, and two-time Qatar International Champion.
Aliaa Al Shaqab (Besson Carol x Desha Bey Alishah). 20 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
“Many things in our shows need to change,” continues
“We must remember that the point of the show is to
Sheikh Hamad. “It is a sensitive and political topic. Some
recognize the best in the breed. The show is the place
people don’t like me anymore because I will say the truth,
where all the breeders come together to talk about their
and people never expect this. The problem we are facing
breeding, their future, what they want to breed. The show
is that we have lost the breeders. What we find now are
is the place to help each other, to be like a family. Now it
the collectors. The collector wants to win and doesn’t
is all about the market. This problem affects all of us, so I
care about the way to win. We are missing the fun that
hope we can come together to find a solution.
we had before — shows are becoming only VIP tables. And only the trophy matters.
“Even the horses themselves have changed. I think one of the biggest changes started with Marwan Al Shaqab.
Hathfa Al Shaqab (Al Adeed Al Shaqab x Kajora), 2003 Qatar National Champion Mare, and 2002 Qatar International Reserve Champion Filly. Johara Al Shaqab (Imperial Mahzeer x Sahaba).
Miss El Power JQ (Power World JQ x Elkada Sahibi), 2009 Dubai Gold Cup Champion Filly, 2009 Qatar International Champion Filly, 2008 United Kingdom International Champion Filly, 2008 Mediterranean and Arab Countries Champion Filly and 2007 Brazilian National Champion Filly. 21 b AL SHAQAB b WORLD
“I want to know everybody, to be together with everyone, to compete, to love, and to share the passion for Arabian horses. That is really our message.” — Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani
Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani with Al Adeed Al Shaqab.
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He changed the style of Arabian show horses. When
Shaqab breeding program, and for the Arabian horse, in
we started it was only the one type, but when Marwan
the next decade?
came out to the world, he had a different look. He had a longer neck, longer legs, he was more showy. He is close
“My dream is that Al Shaqab is sending the message of the
to perfect. People followed his type, and soon they were
love for Arabian horses, and welcoming new generations
looking at Arabian horses differently. Yes, we had a role
returning to the horse. Our message is to breed the
in that, but we need to remind people that the most
best — horses that are the epitome of what the Arabian
important thing is not just how long the neck is, or how
should look like.
big a mover. It is type and conformation and all the other qualities that comprise a perfect horse.”
“But it is not only Al Shaqab. We are with the family of Arabian horses. I want to know everybody, to be
Our conversation turned to the future. We wondered
together with everyone, to compete, to love, and to share
what was Sheikh Hamad’s greatest hope for the Al
the passion for Arabian horses.That is really our message.”
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“His Highness showed us that, where horse breeding is concerned, faith and exquisite taste are more precious than gold.” — Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani
Sheikh Hamad bin Ali Al Thani Manager of Breeding and Show Department
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