Putting the Tired in Retired
Yes, I’m officially retired from teaching, and, no, I have no excuses for why it’s been so long since I’ve written a journal entry. Lots of ups and downs in the breeding business this summer, but I won’t bore you with the downs. We need more people starting breeding programs, and the downs we’ve experienced this year would discourage those of you who are contemplating harnessing your emotions and fortunes to the ever-fickle fates of this business. Let it be said, the joys outweigh the agonies. Most of the time.
We’ve had a great sales year. Since foaling season began, we’ve sold four of the five foals we decided to sell, and we’ve sold all three of our yearlings. I always appreciate people’s trust in us and their excitement about the quality of what we’re producing. So, thank you to all of you who have gone or will be going home with an SSF horse this year. And, know that a 20% discount is yours if you decide to buy a second, or third, or fourth SSF horse. (I’d keep going, but I don’t think anyone has purchased more than four horses from us…oops! Wrong on that! Or fifth SSF horse.)
The one filly we still have for sale is our Don Tango B x Farrington filly. She’s super well balanced and a very good mover, but I’m not sure how tall she’s going to be. She’s a powerhouse, and will certainly be able to carry any size rider, but I don’t think she’s going to be much over 16 hands. There are a couple of people looking at her, so she may not be available long. I’ve priced her below our normal baby price, purely because I think she could end up being a 15.3 or 16 hand horse, and, for some reason, most people want ginormous horses.
The video with this post is of Notable SSF (Governor x Sir Sinclair x Jazz). We call him Gorgi–because he’s so gorgeous. I know it’s a ridiculously short video, but, if I posted a longer video that showed you just how much crazy talent this colt has, two things might happen: One, you’d expect every horse I sell to be this talented, or, two, you’d offer me more money than I can refuse, and I’m not selling him. I started this program because I couldn’t afford to buy the kind of horse I wanted to ride. Almost thirty years later, I’ve never kept a horse for me to ride. Before you put your judgmental hats on and start shaking your collective heads about this decision, I realize how ridiculous it is. I’ll be 61 before I can ride this colt. I’m far from “in” riding shape. And, even if I were in riding shape, I’ve never been more than a mediocre amateur. Oh, well. I bred him, I own him, I can afford to keep him, and it’s my f**cking dream. I love everything about this colt. His type, his mechanics, his personality. Plus, as I mentioned in the opening of this entry, this business has enough low points, you have to let the joy in when you can.
We’ve also retained two fillies for breeding, Belantis x Donatelli x Jazz and Borsalino x Totilas x Jazz, as well as one stallion prospect, Just Wymphof x Charmeur x Santano.
Breeding wise, it’s been an odd year. In the end, knock on wood, we have 11 out of 12 mares in foal. But, our first foal is due in March, and our last in August. Mares weren’t cycling well; we lost our old teaser stallion, and the mares didn’t like the new guy; etc, etc. But, mostly, I think I relaxed my protocol too much because we were breeding with fresh cooled this year, instead of all frozen. I just wasn’t careful enough. Here’s the list of what we’re expecting:
Gaudi x Rousseau x Jazz
Glo-E x Heir to the Throne
Gaudi x Bon Bravour x Santano (sold)
For Ferrero x Charmeur x Santano
Daily Diamond x Governor x DeNiro
Secret x Donatelli x Jazz (filly option taken)
Gaudi x Freestyle x Jazz
Gaudi x Sir Sinclair x Jazz
Gaudi x Farrington x Pass the Glass xx
For Romance x Totilas x Jazz
Democraat x Contango x Elcaro
So, that’s everything new I’m willing to talk about, except…..Ava Tolman Low!!! Our most important addition to the Tolman breeding program yet! Carol and I are, predictably, smitten. Ava is the cutest baby on the planet, and the most loved. Her dad says,
“Maybe she won’t even like horses.”
Yeah, right. That’s going to happen. Everytime I babysit, I show her Totilas videos and take her to our website. She’s not going to like horses–she’s going to LOVE horses!