The first thoroughbred cremello horse in the UK has been officially recognised by the International Thoroughbred Studbook Committee (ISBC).
Leigh Ann Kerr, of Bexley, Kent, approached Weatherbys last December after importing a yearling colt from America.
On his passport, Electrum was recorded as a palomino thoroughbred, but Ms Kerr believed he was a cremello.
Cremellos have a cream coat, pink skin and blue eyes. They are chestnut horses, but are double diluted (homozygous) with the cream gene.
DNA samples were taken and it was found that Electrum had the cremello gene.
At the ISBC’s annual meeting in September, Weatherbys applied for the colour cremello to be included in the international stud books — and it was approved.
Electrum’s colour has now been corrected to cremello on the Weatherby’s database.
Andrea Brereton from Weatherbys told H&H: “Electrum is the first thoroughbred recorded in the studbook as having cremello colouring. There may be more cremello thoroughbreds out there, but they have not been officially recognised as such.
“No colour is barred for thoroughbreds, it’s just some are less common.”
Electrum was bred by Symmetry Ranch LLC in Pennsylvania, USA, and is by palomino thoroughbred GP Krugerrand, a multiple dressage and hunter champion in the US and out of the buckskin thoroughbred racemare Brightest Gold.
Ms Kerr said: “It is very exciting to own the only recognised cremello thoroughbred, especially now that we are allowed to have his correct colour displayed on his passport.
“He’s a lovely horse and we’ve just started showing him in yearling sport horse classes. There is a possibility he will race, but he will mainly event. We will breed from him too — it would be nice to get some colourful horses on British racecourses!”
This article was first published in Horse & Hound (6 November, ’08)