Team Teke 2009

Akhal Teke Foals - 2009

Dominik, the buckskin stallion belonging to Aylesbury Vale Akhal Tekes, (AVAT) has produced three colt foals this year.  The first was born on 22 May, Yggdrysil, out of Humisha, Akhal Teke/TB x Welsh.

Yoldash arrived next, on 4 June, out of Firyusa, Arab x Akhal Teke, bred at Kyzyl Akhal Tekes. His owners plan an endurance career. Watch this space for a report on his visit to a BEF futurity event at Okehampton.
Finally Azar was born on 14 June, out of AVAT Stud’s Akhal Teke mare Oinam: he is a full brother to the Stud’s 2 year old filly Ayazgul.

Photo Darya Hannigan
Photo Ruth Staines
Photo Darya Hannigan
Photo Ruth Staines


Exe Equestrian Club Pleasure Ride, Woodbury Common, March 15

'Come and ride an Akhal Teke!’ this was an offer I could not refuse, and last year I drove to Devon to take up Maria Marquise’s kind offer. I rode her lovely big bay mare Mushmula on a couple of hacks round her farm and the Devon countryside. This spring came an even better offer – come and join us on a ten mile pleasure ride!The date coincided with the sunniest weekend of the year so far. 

This time I rode Perimli, a mare that Maria has on loan. Smaller than Mushmula, black, with a proud classical head – despite having spent much of her life as a brood mare, she is an absolute joy to ride. Maria’s husband Nigel, on Mushmula, joined me on the ride.

Nigel Baverstock on Mushmula - Photo Ruth Staines

Mushmula was barefoot, Perimli had front shoes. Many of the tracks were stony, but we were able to trot for much of the way, with several short canters. The route took us through woodland, gorse covered heath, and over streams, a splendid variety of countryside. Perimli reminded me of horses I had ridden in Turkmenistan and Iran, with what I can only describe as a light, joyous, forward going movement. Her strides were so horizontal, her trot so comfortable, her transitions to canter imperceptible. I barely noticed I had ridden for ten miles! Mushmula’s feet were fine on the hard going – we passed one hairy cob hardly able to put one barefoot hoof in front of another. We left another cob behind us as we crossed a very boggy stream – here was nearly my downfall as I stopped to look for the best way through, and Perimli decided to put her head down on the bank to sniff the mud! But the mares both waded through. Only at the end did Perimli get excited – otherwise both mares happily went in front, behind, passed or were passed without batting an eyelid. These really are horses made for pleasant travelling – perfect for those of us who are not competitive in any way!


Jackie Richardson writes...

BEF Futurity Evaluation, July 21

Even before Yoldash was born, after reading an article about these evaluations, I wanted to take our foal to this event.  It seemed such a good idea to assess the youngstock that you have bred for the discipline that you have bred them for – be it eventing, show-jumping, dressage, etc.  The horses, ranging from foals to 3 year olds, are looked at by a vet and any faults are noted for you to watch over the coming years.  It could be a case of remedial shoeing or something for your vet to watch or it may just disappear, as they grow older.  Then it’s into an indoor school where a team of 3 evaluators look at the horses. There are several venues all over the country, but as Dash is bred for Endurance and this is the first year that they are including this as an evaluation discipline we were restricted to 4 possible venues.  Okehampton was our nearest, so we duly entered for 21st July and started the halter training.

Yoldash is bred from Firyuza (Fizz), a grey part-bred Arab/Akhal-Teke mare bred by Gill Suttle and Dominik, Darya Hannigan’s beautiful buckskin purebred Akhal-Teke stallion.  Dash was born on 4th June and is an absolute joy to us and we love him to bits.  He is a cute buckskin colt and is full of inquisitiveness and fun.

The day of the evaluation dawned wet and miserable with a vet time of 10.15am.  Fizz loaded fine as usual and I thought Dash would follow but he wasn’t impressed and headed off round the field for a few laps before eventually being persuaded that it wasn’t so bad after all.  They both travelled well for the long 3-hour journey and weren’t fazed by the sight of the other horses at the venue.  We didn’t have to wait long in the queue for our turn and the kindly vet eyed him up and thought that any faults that he might have at 6 weeks old would probably disapear over the next year or so.

We were then ushered into the huge indoor arena and the assessors looked him over critically and then we had to walk a triangle a couple of times leading them both and then we let Yoldash go to trot beside his mother round the triangle again.  Then came the exciting bit as my husband, Neville, held Dash at one end while I walked Fizz to the other end of the arena.  Dash was then released to canter after his mother, jumping the poles marking the triangle on the way, much to everyone’s amusement.  We then heard the verdict from the evaluators and they gave him marks for various sections of the assessment form.  He was given a combined mark of 8.64 out of 10, which was very good and far exceeded our expectations.  This earned him a First Premium rosette.  Elite Premiums are for marks 9 and over and are highly prized.  The assessors said that they liked him very much and that they thought he had a great future in endurance ahead of him: they liked his balance and paces and thought that he could possibly have a dressage future.  This in itself, I found very interesting and is something we might pursue in due course.

He also received a Reserve in the Endurance section and a rosette from Endurance GB for just turning up.  So a little 6-week-old foal ended up taking home 3 lovely rosettes – can’t be bad.

Yoldash 3 months old
Photo Jackie Richardson

Yoldash at Okehampton
Photo Neville Richardson

Yoldash at Okehampton
Photo Neville Richardson

If you ever have a chance to go to one of these events, I would strongly recommend it as I found the evaluators very helpful and impartial.  They gave very good advice where necessary.  Well worth the money.  The results go on the youngster’s record with National Equine Database (NED) and could be useful if you are thinking of selling in the future.

Update on Yoldash. Jackie writes in September: he’s growing fast. We took him to the Dorchester Show last week. He did nothing in the class but was very well behaved and enjoyed going to a party. This is a big show with a lot going on so we were pleased at how well he coped with the tannoys and all the horses milling about. It makes it so much easier as Fizzy is very laid back and doesn’t get fazed by much. It all has a calming effect on Dasha.

I have a lady come to help me with Natural Horsemanship with the pair of them. We have started Dasha off and he is very good at leading around. Once he is going well we can introduce poles and walking over sheets etc We lead them both out into the forest for walks for a change. He is very independent and likes to stay with us if we are working in the field instead of keeping with his mum all the time. He is such fun and hopefully he will grow into a real ‘companion’ which is the meaning of Yoldash. Thankfully, so far he is still keeping the beautiful buckskin colour.