2018 NZ National Show

It never ceases to amaze me how one or two days at a horse show can be so exhausting! Thank you to the judges, show organisers, competitors, sponsors and everyone who makes it happen. I always enjoy catching up with people at the shows and this year was no exception.

I have to thank my wonderful friends for getting to the Nationals at all. Barbara Poulter for giving “Harry” (Santino DH) his first float lesson and stand up lesson and who encouraged me to enter the show at the last minute. Chris Enstrom & Ursula Keenan (Enstrom Performance Horses) for coming to the rescue and transporting Harry, caring for him, educating him, and everything else (the list is long – all while preparing their own four horses and two children for the show!). Angela Rogers for picking up the lead (very gracious of her considering she did not know him, and he was pretty feral not long ago!). Harry blew me away with his cruisy attitude. Apart from his now famous Houdini-streak, he took everything in his stride, and came away with the NZ National Champion Junior Gelding sash and trophy (and $50 prize money sponsored by Kiva Arabians); a big learning experience for him that will set him up for a bright future.

Then on to “Pippa” (Jym-Aud Mahogany Sunrise) the beautiful little Arabian x Welsh mare that my daughter had the opportunity to ride.  Bred and owned my dear friend Fiona Gemmell, Pippa is only four and was so good with Brianna on board (her first outing with a child riding her) winning the Best Presented and Best Combination in the Leadrein section. Thank you Fiona for the opportunity and Amanda Waddell (of Moorelands Livery & Riding School) for leading Pippa and Bri on the day; and over the past few weeks, the riding lessons, your humour and patience. Bri’s smile said it all. Those looking for a future top pony: Pippa is for sale (contact Fiona 03 308 1441).


Sharifa DH and the expanding SS Shula/Shaheen Al Saba family

Featured image above: Sharifa DH as a foal with her dam SS Shula. Below: Sharifa DH as a four year old.

One of the best things about breeding is watching the youngsters grow up. It is a pleasure to see the four year old mare Sharifa DH progress. Beautifully started under saddle by Russell Higgins (click HERE to watch a video), she is now back home at Classic Arabians. Like her sire Shaheen Al Saba, Sharifa is one very smart cookie, has a HUGE walk and loves to be ridden. She also has the arched tail carriage and easy going nature of her dam SS Shula.

Riders and showies should take a serious look at Sharifa DH’s younger brother, the yearling Santino DH – he is tall, strong and intelligent just like his sister – only he is chestnut! He is also ridiculously good-looking… no photo does him justice (photo below taken last Autumn).


Or, we have waiting in the wings, a three-quarter brother in blood, Marco DH (pending) who is by Shaheen and out of Shula’s Simeon Sapar daughter, Suha DH (the one that I always believed would make the grittiest Endurance horse, if not for breaking her leg). Marco seems to have a happy outlook on life and he can groove with the best of them.

Here is a short video of Marco DH (pending):

Last but not least is Shameless DH (deceased), the eldest of the direct Shaheen Al Saba/SS Shula progeny. Although he is no longer with us, you can see he shows what a great cross this is – three siblings, all of a good height (taller than their parents), with great movement, substance and type.

New foals & Shaheen an Open Endurance horse

Shaheen Al Saba has completed the Novice Endurance system with a 40km at Southbridge and then 84km at Mayfield earlier this season, and has qualified at his first Open 80km ride down at MacRaes Flat. Shaheen is in his happy place when going the distance.

His trainers/riders, Chris and Ursula, have bred the first Anglo Arab foal by Shaheen, a spectacular chestnut colt out of Arahi Silhouette called Contraband EPH (pending). He is tall, elegant and powerful. Destined to be a performance horse he is most definitely handsome enough to also be a show horse!


Our stud is thrilled to have finally bred another Shaheen Al Saba filly after a few years of colts. Thaqiba DH (pending) is out of the glorious old mare Fairview Shakla’s Shania and will probably be her last foal. “Brattley” as she is known, has heaps of attitude, is powerful and pretty and will be grey.

Our second foal is out of the precious SS Shula daughter Suha DH, “the broken legged mare”. Marco DH (pending) is elegant and can move like a dream. He will also go grey (a bit sad in this case as he really is the most beautiful rich bay).

On the sales front, Tornado DH has been sold as a gelding to a new home up Nelson way. We look forward to hearing all about his new adventures.

The year of the colt

SS Shula gave birth to a tall chestnut colt by Shaheen Al Saba on the 10th October, and the day before our client’s mare also had a colt – so that’s four Shaheen colts from four mares this season! Great news for the Endurance and Performance folk – there will be some good quality geldings coming through the ranks.

Shula’s foal, Santino DH (pending) will be available for sale at weaning.

Another boy!

Another new son of Shaheen Al Saba was born on the 27th September, out of the Ali Jamaal granddaughter, Esscort’s Kiss From A Rose (bred/owned by Deb Bamber, leased by Desert Heritage Arabians for this foal). He is tall and handsome with what appears to be a tremendous shoulder and good eye set at this stage. This lad will be for sale at weaning – he is named Rococo DH (pending).

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80km down, and a new son

Shaheen Al Saba, ridden by Chris Enstrom, completed his first 80km Novice Endurance ride over the weekend. We have seen huge improvements in the vet ring and as always he is happy and enthusiastic out on track. All credit to Enstrom Performance Horses for his preparation and performance.

Earlier in the week a new son of Shaheen Al Saba was born for Riverchant Arabians. This fellow is out of Exspressa’ah RCA (Eastwinds Axiom (Simeon Sa’ar) x Nah’Tricia (Nahda)). He will be grey, has a great shoulder, strong level topline and already shows he has the same walk as his sire with that huge over-stride. If you are looking for a future performance horse, this boy has the goods.

Shaheen Al Saba starts his Endurance career

Under the care and training of Enstrom Performance Horses, Shaheen completed his first Novice 40km Endurance ride at Mt Somers, on the 28th of August. He is still a very green horse that has  done little else other than breeding mares, and subsequently needs to learn to ignore other horses around him. However, he shows a lot of talent and power, according to Chris and Ursula. We are looking forward to his next ride.

Shaheen at the Arabian Extravaganza

The Heartland Arabian Horse Association organised a public presentation of purebred and partbred Arabian horses for the NZ Arab Horse Breeders Society AGM, on the 14th of May. Chris Enstrom & Ursula Keenan of Enstrom Performance Horses wanted to bring a horse along, but, as is often the way at this time of the year, were struggling to find one that was suitable. So, a bit over a week before the event they rang me and put forth a proposal to take Shaheen for me, and hopefully ride him on the day! Remember this horse has not been under saddle (apart from one bareback pony ride) since he was broken in two years ago by Gemma Sigglekow of Epona Downs.

Chris collected Shaheen on the Monday before the event. With four rides under his girth before the big day, this was the result – he was just incredible – so balanced and brave for a very green horse, and he clearly loves his job. Chris and Urs have clicked with Shaheen and I can’t see me getting him back! What a thrill it is to see my horse so happy, and he received a number of great comments from experienced show breeders and top endurance riders alike, regarding his beauty and his performance.

NZ National Titles success

We had the most amazing time at the 2016 NZ National Arabian Championships under UK judge Joanne Lowe. Our team and results included:
Fairvew Shakla’s Shania +Au (SK Shakla Khan x Pasquinell Shakira). Owned by Desert Heritage Arabians, handled by Clayton Bazeley. TOP 5 PUREBRED MARE

Colt foal Tornado DH (pending) (Shaheen Al Saba +Au x Fairvew Shakla’s Shania +Au). Bred and owned by Desert Heritage Arabians, handled by Clayton Bazeley. NATIONAL CHAMPION JUNIOR PUREBRED COLT
Redwood Lodge Estonia +Au (Om El Abadan x Windella Silver Fire), owned by the Talitha/Desert Heritage Arabians partnership, handled by Clayton Bazeley & Carmen Tuite. NATIONAL RESERVE CHAMPION PUREBRED MARE
Essence of Arwen (CRA Sihr Shahrif +USA x SS Shula), bred and owned by the Talitha/Desert Heritage Arabians partnership, handled by Christian Rebsdorf. NATIONAL CHAMPION JUNIOR PUREBRED FILLY
Yanah Bint Shaheen (Shaheen Al Saba +Au x Euralea Fire N Desire), bred and owned by the Euralea/Desert Heritage Arabians partnership, handled by Clayton Bazeley. NATIONAL RESERVE CHAMPION JUNIOR PUREBRED FILLY

A huge thank you to Carmen and Clayton for helping to prepare and later present the horses, (Carmen was also “camp mother”). To Cat & Deb for holding horses and moral support; and to Fiona, Amanda and Phillipa for transporting horses among other things. Last but not least to Nick for being thoroughly supportive even though he had his own competition to go to!

Talitha & Desert Heritage Partnership news

In December we took Essence of Arwen for her show debut to the South Island Premier Showing Championships where she was awarded Reserve Champion Purebred Arabian, beating her own mother SS Shula. “Red” has just been out again today at the South Island Arabian Championships and awarded South Island Reserve Champion Filly. She also won the Junior Classic Head class.

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The secret is out now, that we have purchased the multi champion show mare Redwood Lodge Estonia. “Sonnie” needs no introduction to New Zealanders. At 20 years of age she has again graced the show ring and while a little arthritic, still managed to wow the judge and trot off with the South Island Reserve Champion Mare sash today. Sonnie also won the Veteran Special Award  and was 2nd Senior Classic Head.

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