First of all, ArabianFlashlights.com wishes all a Happy, Healthy and Successful New Year, whatever the word 'successful' means to the individual.
The year 2009 was interesting - in some matters even surprising! We saw many shows, and heard about flashing sales, and some facts came to public attention that concerned genetical directions and certain horses or lines. Whether it was SCID, EVA (Equine Virus Abortion) or CA (Cerebral Atrophy) – they all existed long before yesterday - but seems for many to be ‘hidden’. When it began to be discussed publicly, although mostly anonymously, we now hear about specific horses and names. Much attention goes, as usual, to the stallions, as by the number of breedings they are distributors much more than a mare. What to do? To bring those horses down in their quality? To ignore them for breeding in the future? To act as if nothing was there? All of this is the wrong way to go! Depending on what it is, if in-/affected or if a carrier, first of all, the details and facts should be known. Based on those, everybody can make their own decision on how to go ahead with this or that horse and blood. And secondly, if you are nervous if your horse is concerned, get your horse tested to find out the truth. Then you know and need not be nervous anymore. To put critical or negative moments under the carpet never helps - in nothing in life! It is of importance to know and face the truth and to handle it openly and honestly - this helps the present and the future of the breed.
In 2009, the shows were heading in different fields. Renewals came, ECAHO also placed new rules, and the Middle East studs were dominating the ribbons. No wonder, they really have- collected, but also bred, some of the best horses worldwide. However, many breeders and owners are getting frustrated, and the show network does not give enough space for too much. ECAHO and all show organizers should take the challenge to create new ideas and direction, before the shows starts to collapse in the general fields. Even the atmosphere at the shows is getting more 'quiet'. The excitment from the audience still a few years ago made some halls really tremble. Now whilst we hear the owners and friends screaming for their horse, can spot them by the direction of the noise, but the public and audience need to regain their excitement.
Also we definetely need to be motivating young/er people - in all fields of the Arab horse industry. We need more young trainers, we need young, independent, fresh spirited people, a next and young generation even of judges, that could still take advantage of the experience of the present ones that come from nearly one to two generations, however you define "generation". But when there is no space for the young ones, sooner or later when several of the present judges stand down or retire there will be no-one to replace them. Let the young ones come in and share the advice and experience from the actual panel. Then the system may function also long-term. The walls of a house are needed to make it stand, but from time to time, also the walls need to be inspected and maybe restored, sometimes even a new coat of paint to give a fresh touch, making it looking better, clean and fresh again.
The January "Monthly" shows a picture of the stallion SC DAGASH taken at the 2009 European Championships in Verona where the show ground was setup in the most lovely decoration of the famous opera "Aida". SC DAGASH is bred in Europe, a grand son of the famous and most popular sire in the 90s, KUBINEC, and he is proudly owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Saud Al Qasimi and his Albidayer Stud, from Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates. Sheikh Mohammed also owns the famous World and multiple Champion MARAJJ, and enjoys and loves his horses, whether winning a trophy or not. He is the man, breeder and owner who was one of the very first, being strong enough in personality to publish what he had to realize with his stallion Marajj that he is a CA carrier. So through this 'Monthly' and picture we meet several moments being representative for the today's situation: from a horse being bred in one continent (Europe) and sold to another (the Middle East), from showing and the hunting to trophies and unconditional love of the horse, from discovering a weakness that could touch the business if known, but the owner being personality enough to face and to publish it straight - at least, to behalf of the other owners and breeders to handle it in their future breeding decisions.
As more ethics are reflected in the scene, more people might enjoy the Arab horse breed and the shows again. The new year of 2010 should be used as an opportunity for going better ways and new directions!