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TOM ARABIANS Arabians Horses Polish



What are the goals in that country? What is the market they are going after?
We all know they race them, but that doesnt mean much to me, since they race them amongst their own breeding programs. Not a very good barometer.



Witraż (PL) Bay1938

 ( Ofir x Makata )



( Ofir x Elegantka )

WITEZ II (PL)  Bay 1938

(Ofir x Federacja)

The Polish breeding program today is, as it always has been, based on its broodmares. There are many dam-lines in use, all dating back 100 to 150 years or more-some from the turn of the nineteenth century. Sire lines have been somewhat more diverse. In the early twentieth century, there were approximately 30 sire lines in use.

Two of the four 1931 imports left particularly significant lines in Poland. Kuhailan Haifi, known for his athletic prowess, sired Ofir, who produced the triumvirate of Witraz, Wielki Szlem and *Witez II. Witraz, who was more beautiful than Wielki Szlem and possessed a fiery temperament, was the sire of *Bask++.

 *Bask++ (PL)  Bay1956

(Witraz x Balalajka)

In a monumental case of oversimplification which is nevertheless somewhat helpful in keeping traits straight when starting out, Americans tend to refer to Polish horses of intense refinement and beauty as "Seglawi" in type, while the more athletic ones are generally "Kuhailan." This is, as mentioned, an oversimplification, as both terms refer to strains and there were many more strains than just those two. However, the program has always reflected the judicious mixture by breeders of tough, athletic characteristics with ethereal beauty and remembering the two types can help one keep track of the teams. Seglawi horses often come in grey, while Kuhailans are frequently bay.

Most Polish horses go to the track in Warsaw in their three-year-old year to pursue a career on the turf. The object is not necessarily to win races, the breeders are examining a horse's ability to carry weight over distance with speed, and his or her soundness and capacity for quick recovery. Those that pass the tests are retained for breeding on the stud farms; others are sold. Other than the importations by General Dickinson and Mr. Babson in the thirties, Americans by and large did not acquire Arabians from Poland until the late fifties and early sixties. It was then that British breeder Patricia Lindsay, intrigued by the history and quality of the Polish breeding program, learned the Polish language and traveled to Poland to investigate for herself. She purchased and leased horses for her program and eventually bought for interested Americans. American breeders began visiting Poland in search of bloodstock, and the relationship has been growing ever since. 

The goals of the Polish program are to produce "complete" Arabian horses. They select for multiple qualities including comformation, soundness, trainability, athleticism and other important properties. For example, broodmares are expected to get in foal easily, deliver easily, produce lots of milk and take good care of their foals. Here is an evaluation chart . They keep records like this on each of their horses.

IPB Image

The Poles send most of their horses racing. Racing is considered part of the evaluation of the horse. It is considered a plus if they are good race horses. It is considered a negative if they are not easily trained, aren't athletic or are easily injured. The Polish race horses were considered the best in the World until a small number of tightly bred French horses proved superior. The French blood is very limited and Polish horses continue to produce wins around the world and are popular as crosses for the French horses.

In regard to their market. The Poles have to respond to the market as the Government expects them to sell their product at good prices. The first serious Polish export market after WWII was started in the 60's when Patricia Lyndsay first purchased horses from Poland. This was followed shortly thereafter by LaCroix and the export of *Bask. The export market to the US expoded for Poland. Many but not all of the exports were focused on athletic horses suitable for saddleseat. 


PALAS (RU) Grey 1968

(Aswan X Panel by Nil)

Photo - A-Mattsson


 MONOGRAMM (USA) Chesnut - 1985
 (Negatraz X Monogramma by Knippel)

Photo 1994 - Dick Reed


LAHEEB (IL) Grey 1996

(Imperial Imdal X Ak Latifa by Ibn Moniet El Nefous)



(Anaza El Farid X Kajora by Kaborr)

This market dried up abruptly in the early 80's. The Poles next most successful market was the European market which was focused solely on halter horses. These Poles began to seek to produce horses which would be attractive to this market. They used imported stallions to improve type. The first big impact was through PALAS (Aswan X Panel by Nil) a 3/4 Egyptian stallion. Next came MONOGRAMM (Negatraz X Monogramma by Knippel) a Polish/Russian stallion. More recently LAHEEB (Imperial Imdal X Ak Latifa by Ibn Moniet El Nefous) and GAZAL AL SHAQAB (Anaza El Farid X Kajora by Kaborr) have been used extensively.

The results of this have been a long line of highly successful halter show horses who have won in the biggest shows everywhere around the world. The progeny of the these stallions coming from high quality Polish dam lines have brought the highest prices of any Arabian horses sold anywhere around the world.



Metropolis NA (US) Chesnut 1996

( Concensus x NDL Martinique by Muscat )

One can hardly blame the Poles for breeding what sells. I am sure they still have many wonderful horses that would make excellent saddleseat horses but nobody is coming to the sales to buy them. METROPOLIS NA (Concensus X NDL Martinque by Muscat) a big trotting saddleseat horse (Reserve Junior Champion EP at Scottsdale) was used extensively in the Polish studs to great success. Perhaps you should come to Poland and check some of the foals out.  


 Sanadik el Shaklan (DE) Grey 1983

( El Shaklan x Mohena)


 EL DORADA (PL) grey 1998 -Photo Dick reed 2007

( Sanadik El Shaklan x Emigrankja by Eukaliptus )

 Lets not forget the *Sanadik blood infused recently (in the last 8 years). *El Dorada was from the first foal crop the Poles produced with this infusion. She has proven to be a World Class Mare 

 The Polish horses are typer and not pushed over the top since their life doesn't end once they exit the races. It is just a phase to test them, and being "consistent and willing and healthy" is just as important as winning the race.



 GALBA  (DE) Grey 1994-Died 2014 

(Plakat x Gza Gza, by Negatraz)


 Al MARAAM Bay (IL)  Bay 1998

(Imperial Imdal x The Vision y Thee Desperado)


 SAVANNAH (PL) Bay 1997 - Mare

( Monarch AH  x Sarmacja by Gil )

As for the market they are going after, i'd say there's not just one.
Racehorses, unless they are exceptional don't get equivalent prices as fancy show mares (even Savvannah, the greatest racing mare of the century didn't top the sale 2004 - 135.000Euros). The trend is to produce horses with more and more egyptian blood (Gazal, Galba, Laheeb, Al Maraam), i suppose that's what the market is asking.
The list of mares for sale, it's a mix, there is enough diversity to please any buyer. The quality is always very high, and you don't need to be Polish-arabian oriented to acknowledge that they could fit in any breeding programme. These mares are typey, athletic, correct, healthy and in foal, they deserve high prices.
The Waho conference in 2004 brought breeders from all over the world, they have been charmed by the versatility of the Polish arabians as a parade was displayed before them in Warsaw.

What I think the market, my best answer is would be those who are far-sighted enough to recognize that Poland still hold on to the tradition that allowed them to breed some of the best horses of the Past and Present.



 Kewa (YU) grey 1923

(Siglawy Bagdady II x Kalga by Amurath)



 Porta (PL)  Chesnut 1931

( Nedjari (FR) x Jerichonka by Nizam )



Forta (PL)  Dark Bay. 1943

( Kuhailan Abu Urkub x Porta by Nedjari (FR))





Etruria (PL)  Grey1975

( Palas x Etna by Faher )



 Pilarka (PL)  Grey 1975

( Palas x Pierzga by Negatiw )



Angola (PL) Grey 1976

( Palas x Andria by Bandos )

Reference was made to the introduction of French racing blood in the 30's to the Polish program. The French Arabians were so devoid in type that they offended many Polish horsemen. The French blood was successful initially but the Poles found a legitimate way to compete with the French horses by scheduling races in more rapid succession. The Polish horses began to win a much greater percentage of the races once this tactic was used and I feel that it is a valid test for breeding stock. If we look at the Polish Arabian horses of the 30's we find an admixture of outside blood, partly as a result of the catastrophic losses of World War I. The Poles utilized horses like Kewa from Yugoslavia and Koheilan I from Hungary to make valuable contributions to their program. These horses were probably as close as they could come to reestablishing the type of horse bred in Poland prior to World War I. They had Polish antecedants but would probably not be deserving of the term pure Polish prior to their importation to Poland. Porta, the dam of Forta, permeates the blood of the modern Polish horse but certainly Porta herself with her large portion of French blood did not represent a concentrated genetic pool. By the time Patricia Lindsay focused attention on the Polish program in the 50's I feel that they had a more unified "Polish" gene pool. She herself, writes eloquently about making subsequent trips to Poland and not being convinced that their quest for outcross blood was necessary. Denise Borg in her section in Neil Wood's book has a very impassioned and reasoned passage on substantially the same subject, particularly the use of Aswan blood. Aswan's conformational shortcomings are so well documented that I don't feel the need to review them here. Suffice to say that due to the strength of the Polish blood the resultant crosses were able to demonstrate his attributes of size, type and surprisingly good racing abilities while frequently mitigating, at least in the first and second generations, the conformational troubles. the Palas daughters like Etruria, Pilarka and Angola are first rate mares. 


Kay Patterson - Breeder to MONOGRAMM

As Kay Patterson said (about twenty years ago)- the Polish program, in terms of the type of horse they were striving for, was different. I believe they were breeding for ellusive qualities of great dryness, huge eyes and dramatic movement. The Russian's although using a lot of Polish blood were breeding for a more utilitarian and successful racehorse than the Poles. As the Russian's were allowed to compete on the Polish race track they were undoubtedly succesful  but the goals of the two programs were different . 




Negatiw (SU)  Grey 1945

( Naseem x Taraszcza by Enwer Bey )


Negatiw in Poland

 Witraz, Comet and Negatiw were all average with respect to racing ability but at least many of their offspring were hardy and persistent. 



Comet (PL) Grey 1953

( Abu Afas x Carmen by Trypolis )


Probat (SEBay 1975

( Pohaniec x Borexia by Exelsjor )



 El Ghazi (PL)  Bay 1983

(Aloes x elektra by Bandos)


Europejczyk (PL)  Bay 1982

(El Paso x Europe by Bandos)

Things have changed dramatically in the way arabians in Poland are bred and look today.   Poland did export much of it's valuable stock in the 60's, 70's, 80's...... The Kuhailan Afas sireline through Comet is a good example. I could be said that with good representative sires from this line alone there would be much more by way of saddleseat horses than say his replacement *Probat was capable of producing. Also, the loss of many great sirelines created additional need for outside or outcross blood. There is also virtually no Kuhailan-type stallions of the Kuhailan Haifi sireline in Poland. This line Produced *Bask, *El Ghazi, *Europejczyk....etc.
The kuhailan horse in Poland, with few exceptions is not the quality it was in the past decades, and far fewer kuhailan horses are being bred. These were the horses that were the most sucessful in saddleseat in the 70's, 80's, 90's. Is the market for saddleseat what it was then? No. Would it help if Poland was producing them like they did in previous decades. I dont know. I think these two things have to be balanced against eachother, and I doubt if we could determine for sure what the outcome would be if things were different in Poland in this regard. 

 the loss of the Kuhailan Afas sire line through Comet...Which was lost when all of the great Comet horses were exported. The Poles used *Probat to re-introduce and carry on this line.

But the optomist would point out that if the Poles did not adjust to the up's and down's of the market, the State Studs may not exist today, which would be a great loss. The way they are breeding horses now seems to be working for them. People would also say that there is a greater demand now for this type of horse.

I have to think, like I often do in regards to Politics, that the majority opinion is not always the intelligent one. But intelligence gets you only so far in breeding horses, as horse breeding is very superficial, and personal preference plays such a huge role. 

Also, the loss of many great sirelines created additional need for outside or outcross blood. There is also virtually no Kuhailan-type stallions of the Kuhailan Haifi sireline in Poland.

They added the Saklawi I sire line when they imported Palas. They probably didn't plan to add the line originally but clearly support it with the great success they've had with it. 


 EKSTERN(PL Grey 1994- Photo A.Mattsson

( Monogramm x Ernestyna by Piechur )


 GANGES (PL) Bay 1994 - Photo W.Pawlowska

( Monogramm x Garonna by Fanatyk )

The Witraz/Bask leg of the Kuhailan Haifi Sire line is currently represented by Ekstern and Ganges. In particular Ganges is the choosen Kuhailan phenotype stallion. He seems to be to be a good representative of this line. He has beautiful Kuhailan looks, extravagant motion and an excellent pedigree. 

Being that *Ganges may be the only Kuhailan representative of the Kuhailan Haifi sireline, *Ganges is a good horse.

I personally think the great strength of the Polish program is their willingness to bring in outside blood and not get bogged down in what defines Polish. The State Studs are Polish breeding and represent hundreds of years of continuous pursuit of Arabian perfection. One may not always like what they have done but history supports their process.  


 Priboj (SUChesnut 1944

(Piolun x Rissalma by Shareer) 

Bred by Tersk Stud, Russia
Measurements: 154-178-19.5
Race Record: 2/8 (6-2-0) 


Pietuszok (SU)  Bay 1954

(Priboj x Taktika by Taki Pan )  




 Laur (PL)  Grey1946

(Lotnik x Kalina by Wallis II )  



The Kuhailan Adjuze sire line through Priboj/*Pietuszok/Laur is a good example of a sireline that is lost in Poland.


The loss of the Comet sire line and the Kuhailan Adjuze sireline predates the advent of the heavy use of outside stallions or the move away from the Kuhailan phenotype being the prototypical Polish horse. 

Horse breeding is subjective. It can be related to Art in that peoples tastes are so different. I think it is detrimental to the persuit of Polish Arabian horse breeding when people are not balanced enough to have crytical conversations about breeding. the criticism, even constructive  towards the Polish breeding program often causes certain parties to become very defensive. I think this stops people from being able to move forward.

It is fair to say that the Poles have been very critical of their own breeding program at certain points.... if that was not the case they probably would have never been successful. I think it is important to look at what crosses worked and why, and to even consider what the possibilities would have been if things did not progress in Poland the way they did. 

 Negatraz (US)  Bay 1971

( Bask x Negotka by Negatiw )

 It is interesting to think what might have happened if Negatraz went instead of Monogramm, if there was another representative of the Kuhailan Afas sireline that was used instead of *Probat, if Palas was not used. These are all interesting things to think about, whether the outcome would have been better or worse.


Mr Marek Trela - Director Janow Podlaski Stud


Mr Jerzy Bialobok - Director Michalow Stud

The individual stud directors of each of the studs hold tremendous power over the breeding from that stud farm. Marek Trela and Jerzy Bialobok are new to their position and are striving to make their mark. They will judged by what they produce 

 in Conclusion : If you are an arabian enthusiast (and have big bucks), you are the target!





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