A pure-bred stallion is proving the Arab breed can offer more than just picture-perfect aesthetics and flashy movement, keeping up with his part-bred counterparts in all aspects of performance and competition.
The super-versatile Mukhtar Ibn Eternity (Mooky) — a 14-year-old who has been owned by Oxfordshire-based Sasha Melia since he was a foal — is currently balancing a career in the show ring and at stud, as well as on the event field and in the showjumping arena. He has also taken part in the All The Queens Horses Parade in central London, as well as arena eventing and has his own Facebook page with more than 1,600 followers.
At the Arab Horse Society (AHS) national championships this month he was awarded the coveted WAHO trophy. The recipient is chosen by a panel from the AHS each year and was presented to Mooky — and his rider Julia Fairbank — at the show for his exceptional contribution as a breed ambassador.
“He’s had such a varied life for a stallion,” said Sasha. “Mooky originally started out in the show ring and was champion several times as a youngster then as a ridden horse, qualifying for Horse of the Year Show three years running. He was then leased by Dr Gudrun von Tevenar of the Red House Stud in 2014 where his first crop of foals were born. He then came back to me and began his performance career.”
The stallion — whose breeding is predominantly of the ‘Golden Cross’ mix of Egyptian and Spanish bloodlines — quickly took to the discipline switch and has since competed in eventing, hunter trials, showjumping and dressage. In 2017 he made the step up to British Eventing at BE90 level and qualified for the BE arena eventing championships in 2016 and 2017.
Sasha added: “Whatever we chuck at him, he just does it and enjoys it. I keep him on a livery yard and he hacks out with mares all the time — we do AI with him and he can be covering one day and go out competing the next.
The nine-month-old colt is considered ‘close to perfection’ by his breeders, but ‘worrying’ by others
Arab ex-racehorses and endurance horses can now take part in new showing classes
From next year the ARO will be the sole governing body for Arab racing in Britain
“He is also one of the very few stallions in the UK to be National Stallion Association performance-graded (high class 1 grade) and has since been awarded the Arab Horse Society premium sire status.
“When we’re out and about, I can see people on big horses looking at this little grey Arab whizzing around, but he always comes home with a rosette, no matter what we’re doing.
“It was the icing on the cake to get the award from the AHS. It was great to have Mooky’s multi-discipline achievements recognised. I am excited to see if his offspring follow in his footsteps.”
For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday.