Breeding and raising show jumpers is an exercise in accumulating horses! Start with a couple of nice mares purchased for grand prix level competition and eventually retired to the farm for a second career as mommies. Import a spectacular young Holsteiner stallion, Clintord I, winner of the Holsteiner Verband 70 day stallion performance test in Germany as a 3-year-old and already a sire in demand in Europe. Start raising babies.
Now it’s four years later and our herd consists of the same two mares, the stallion, two offspring per year from the same two mares for four consecutive years – 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016. And both mares are safe in foal for 2017 as well. That means by this time next year we will be housing thirteen equines here in Tucson (not counting the retirees) and the oldest crop will be ready to leave home and start their education in the show-jumping world.
Prior to the ‘Clintord Years’ we had been raising horses for decades, primarily thoroughbred hunters sired by our CCF Fisher King. We switched to warmbloods in 2008, raising our first foal out of the grand prix mare Charisma 57. Those warmblood offspring are already enjoying success in the show ring in the young jumper divisions, starting with 7-year-old CCF Caramel (Durango La Silla – Charisma 57/Contango), 6-year-old CCF Yasur (Ocean I – Aida Z/Andiamo), and the two 5-year-olds CCF Hibiscus Coast (Durango La Silla – CCF Luminous/CCF Fisher King) and CCF Savusavu (Ocean I – Nouska/Julio Mariner) – all four of these youngsters highly ranked in Zone and HOTY ratings and winners of top placings in the Young Jumper Championships over the past few years.
And now that the Clintords are coming of age, we are really, really, REALLY looking forward to the coming years.
We received some good news from overseas in October as results came in from DSA, the National Championships for the Danish Sporthorse Breed Society. A Clintord son named Carrera Love laid down a prize winning round in the five-year-old National Championship finals and earned praise from the judges.
Lene Ibsen, Carrera Love’s breeder and owner, writes “He is a wonderful horse with a magnificent temper. He loves jumping and always acts very cool, no matter what surroundings we put him in. I would like very much to use Clintord in my breeding again.”
Beautiful Celebrity T, Clintord’s only daughter in Denmark, continued her winning ways by scoring 8.5 (out of 10) for technique and scope, and 810 points in her riding test, earning RDH certification and admittance into the main studbook. She already has accolades from prior years, winning the championship in jumping for 3-year-old mares at the Danish licensing trials in 2013. Annette commented about her young mare ‘She is lovely, and something special from the day she was born. As a breeder, you just know, when they have the X-factor.’
Congratulations to Lene and Annette. Keep sending us the news as these young horses advance in their careers.
In 2015 we added two more Clintord babies to the collection we have growing up here on the farm. While their coats were still slick and shiny we had a portrait session with equine photographer Patty Hosmer of HoofPrints Photography. Now fall is coming on and these beautiful youngsters will morph into the fuzzy awkward ugly duckling stage. So I thought I’d share their portraits to remember them by until they turn into swans again.
CCF Circa (Clintord I x Andiamo Z)
Both moms, our Dutch Keur mare Nouska (Julio Mariner x Voltaire) and our Zangersheide mare Aida HZ (Andiamo x Karthago) are confirmed in foal to Clintord for 2016, as are several more outside mares from California to New Jersey. Something else to look forward to come spring!
Clintord’s oldest USA born son Credence, a 3-year-old, is just starting under saddle. He showed impressive form when lunged over a makeshift jump when Michelle and Alex came home for a brief visit and played with the youngsters. It will be so exciting in another year or so when we finally will have some Clintords prepping for the show ring.
Another fun discovery is that Clintord is siring all sorts of colors. Of course there is every shade of brown from seal brown to blood bay mimicking dad’s coloring, but he has also sired greys, a paint, and this year we have a coal black colt and a dark liver chestnut. Most have a generous amount of white for extra chrome. But best of all, they are tall, elegant, athletic and correct.
Click any image below to start full screen slideshow:
Spring has arrived in Tucson! The trees are leafing out, the wildflowers are blooming, the temperatures are balmy (at least in the daytime), unlike the poor East Coast getting clobbered by record-breaking winter storms.
As a result, our babies are starting to shed out and I thought it might be a good time to share photos of some of our first Clintord offspring growing up here at Cross Creek Farms. The oldest USA bred youngsters are just turning two.
Disclaimer:-) It is really helpful to have a professional equine photographer, my sister Patty Hosmer of Hoofprints Photography, in the family!
CCF Coral Sea is just turning two. His dam Nouska is a grand prix winner here in the U.S. with Michelle Parker riding. Nouska is registered Dutch, sired by Julio Mariner (thoroughbred) out of a Voltaire daughter.
CCF Galactica II is a full sister to Coral Sea. She is still fuzzy, so this is a photo taken last fall when she was four months of age. Nouska is in foal again to Clintord for a late April 2015 foal.
Credence is Clintord’s first USA born foal (there are lots in Europe). Co-owned by Michelle Parker and Cameron Stoddard, out of Cameron’s good jumper mare Bonnie, he is growing up here in Tucson. Photo taken last fall at 11 months of age.
And our youngest, CCF Cloudbreak (Bolt), showing off his elasticity here at two months of age!
CCF Cloudbreak. His dam is Aida Z H, by Andiamo Z out of a Karthago daughter. She, too, is expecting another Clintord baby this coming July.
If you have a paint mare, you could have something like this Clintord son in California!
Sometimes I entertain myself by surfing the web looking for the offspring of our Holsteiner stallion Clintord I making their appearances in Europe. Last night I ran across the results of Katrinelund, the Danish Warmblood licensing event just held this month in Denmark. Clintord’s daughter Celebrity T was the champion in jumping performance for 3 year old mares. Congratulations to Celebrity T and her breeder Annette Juhl Taldorf of Stutteri Taldorf in Olgod, Denmark.
Remarks of the judges are included thanks to Brian Bech-Hansen, who made the translation for me, commenting: “Wow did I not realize how difficult it is to translate horse technical language from one language to another 🙂
Efter Clintord I/Linaro/Caletto II/Calypso II, Stamme 3030
Hun er den eneste hoppe i Danmark efter Clintord I
Fløjhoppe med bla. 8,5 for teknik og kapacitet
Hun blev bla. rost for sin type, ædelhedsgrad, og at hun er en udtryksfuld og feminin hoppe, med en særdeles god skulder, overlinie, smidige og gode velafbalanceret og rummelige galop, samt at hun springer med godt overblik og rytme, med en særdeles god og smidig teknik og stor kapacitet
Out of Clintord I/Linaro/Caletto II.Calypso II, Line 3030
She is the only mare in Denmark out of Clintord I
Best mare with 8.5 for technical and capacity.
She was among other things praised for her type, thoroughbred percentage and that she is an eye catcher, a feminine mare with a good shoulder and over line, she is elastic, well balanced and has a large canter and she is jumping with a great overall control, rhythm and with a very good and elastic technique and great capacity.
It was time to catch up with my daughter and her show jumpers competing in California. Last Saturday I drove from Tucson to Del Mar near San Diego to watch Michelle ride our Holsteiner stallion Clintord I in the $100,000 Grand Prix of Del Mar. Actually I planned to leave on Friday but the wind was gusting so violently in Tucson that driving seemed an unappealing prospect. The same windy weather was whipping up a fierce wildfire in the Hidden Hills area near LA. At its peak the fire threatened some 4,000 homes and a university campus. There are also numerous horse farms in the vicinity including several top grand prix show barns. A thousand horses were evacuated to safer surroundings and fortunately by next day the hot, dry, windy weather abated and the fire was brought under control without inflicting as much damage as was threatened.
The Del Mar National Horse Show is one of a select few remaining across the country that continue to offer the pomp and circumstance that marks a true event. So many of today’s horse shows operate in a closed loop, existing only to bring in entries and crank out classes for the benefit of the participants and the venue’s bottom line. In contrast a show like Del Mar goes the extra mile to entice the public with fun and pageantry, generating an electric energy absorbed by fans and competitors alike. The stands are filled with enthusiastic spectators while the riders suffer an extra edge of nerves to suit the occasion.
Only a limited number of entrants were allowed in the big money class, so a qualifying $25,000 speed class Thursday night served to narrow the field down to 32 horse/rider combinations eligible to compete in the big ring Saturday night. Clintord acquitted himself admirably in the qualifier with a clean round (VIDEO) and a 5th place finish to secure his place in Saturday night’s order of go. For the main event we were pleased with his 4-fault effort in a class that saw only four horses produce clear rounds over an imposing course of very big jumps. Congratulations to Duncan McFarlane and Mr. Whoopy for the win, well-deserved for their gutsy ‘full-throttle’ jump-off round!
Now I’m hanging out at Michelle’s Cross Creek West training facility in nearby San Marcos while the horses take a break. After last week’s fire, the weather turned grey and drizzly. While the daily activity of a training stable took place around me – exercising the horses and coaching the students – I prowled the property seeking candids of horses and people but I spent the majority of my time with Clintord while he was turned out in the pasture, green with new spring grass and dotted with cheerful pink wildflowers.
Photo notes: The overcast skies produced a soft light that served well for the impromptu candids I was shooting. This was my first time using Nikon’s new 80-400mm lens and it was awesome! Fully zoomed in across a field, hand-held, ISO kicked up a bit to compensate – the lens captured such details as individual whiskers on a horse, barn flies frozen in motion (later to be cloned away), and sparkling bright eyes all in crisp focus. The quality of the lens and the great flexibility of its range earns it a permanent place in my shooting bag. Traveling overseas frequently as I do always creates a packing dilemma but this lens will solve a lot of my decision-making agony.