Newsletter October 2008

An Rugha Is Fearr



ICCPS August meeting was well attended although we missed official delegates from Germany, Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden and Switzerland.

We had a good start at the meeting – after discussion we were able to adopt the form cover the veterinary stallion assessment in all ICCPS Countries from the beginning of 2009. This form will follow a stallion if he changes country later. Thank you to Madeleine Beckman and Philip McManus for preparing this form.

Prefix registration was an item that caused hot debate in the spring meeting. It is clear that certain prefix/suffix should only be used by a person who “owns” it. If duplicates exist in different countries the country code will separate them and from now on the registrar should check before accepting a prefix that it is not in use already. The CPBS has a rule that prefix cannot be used even as part of a name by another breeder. If this rule works for the CPBS, it is fine. But by accepting some common and much used words as a prefix the CPBS cannot prevent breeders in other countries using words like Misty, Scarlet or Sparrow as part of a name. So, the CPBS Council might need to look at this again. Now, I’ll ask all ICCPS societies to prepare a list of prefixes in use in your country and send this list to Susan McConnell, secretary, and also to Niamh at the CPBS office… We should be able to prevent duplication in the future. Perhaps the list of prefixes in use by Connemara pony breeders might be able to be listed on the ICCPS website? Susan MUST get this information for this to occur!

Alex O’Connor has done a great job and the pedigree database is up and running. The link can be found on the CPBS website. Alex is waiting for the information from the ICCPS Societies! You might remember that the CPBS is funding the cost of putting up the database and yearly maintenance costs will be shared by the societies. That cost will not be high, so please think about the benefits of a world wide database! I do know that it is not possible to get the necessary information in compatible form in some areas. At least in Finland there are some difficulties but the matter is now in the hands of Finland’s Hippos computer wizards.

ICCPS rules on the website are not up to date. The executive board will review the rules during the coming winter period. The intention is that the rules should be as simple as possible and the executive board will bring its proposal to the next AGM. To be able to re-draft the rules we need your help. Please, email your thoughts to Susan – the sooner the better so that work can begin.

We had other items in the agenda as well, but the above items are the ones that need action from the societies. So, a list of prefixes to Susan and Niamh, database information to Alex and suggestions regarding the rules to me or Susan, ASAP PLEASE!

I didn’t quite manage to end the meeting by midday as promised beforehand. On the other hand we heard interesting news about sweet itch and the results of the latest research from the Swedish researcher Marie Sundqvist, and saw a beautiful presentation of Susanne Lehman’s photographs from the Pony European Championships!

Next year the AGM will be in August – but my guess is that many will visit Connemara for the stallion parade in the spring festival.

Regards to all Tuula Pyöriä ICCPS Chair

Notes from the Societies:

AUSTRALIA: The first team of inspectors from the CPBSA has been and returned to Clifden as part of a continuing program to ensure that the CPBSA has the same inspection procedures as the mother country and other groups. Information is that they all thoroughly enjoyed their trip. The instruction and experience they received, the added knowledge of Connemara and the environment from which the pony emanated together will provide them with a much broader picture which they will carry into their role as Australian inspectors. We must ensure that this rotation of inspectors is continued.

A number of pure bred Connemara ponies and part bred ponies have been flying the Connemara flag down under. Exmoor Truffles from pure bred Connemara mare Exmoor Sugar Gum and thoroughbred sire Cosine was placed 2nd twice and 3rd in her last four events that included a large field of interstate horses. Truffles is now leader on the South Australian Barostoc leader board for eventing in South Australia and placed 32nd in the national field.


Two part bred geldings in Western Australia from the mating of Skipcello, a New Zealand thoroughbred line and a pure bred Connemara mare Kemill Hill Amie are truly showing the versatility of the Connemara part bred. Kemill Hill Co-Pilot (15.2hh) is competing at medium dressage, hacking and hunter classes and has twice been the Connemara part bred of the year. The younger brother, Kemill Hill Storm (16.1hh) has the first place on the WA Pony Club leader board for eventing in 2007.

The pure bred mare Rupari Baronia (Rupari Ronan – Ballantrae Lupin) has been involved in pony club and one day eventing for 18 months with wins at state pony club championship in 2006 and grade 3 horse trials and numerous other high placings. Glenormiston Finnegan (Abbeyleix Finbar – Glenormiston Celebration) has been competing at dressage, and horse trials with numerous top placings at all disciplines.

AUSTRIA: Andrea Hochfellner reports that at a regional pony show in Styria in May the filly foal Green-Heart Myra won the youth championship and the all over championship from approx 50 ponies that attended. At an eventing/military competition also in May, 1st, 2nd and 3rd placings went to Connemaras. In order – Rebel Lord, Collens Lord and A.C. Silver Stream filled the placings.

The Austrian Pony Championship in eventing/military in August saw two Connemara stallions succeed. A.C. Silver Stream won the Austrian pony championship in the youth rider class and the stallion Rebel Lord won the adult class. A very happy report from Andrea.

BRITAIN: The European pony eventing team of five members from Britain that journeyed to Avenches, Switzerland, had three Connemara ponies as mounts. One is a part bred – Ice Cool Bailey, and pure breds Glenayre Bay Surf and Killacorran Blue. Probably a few more teams with Connemaras if only we knew! Information is that the British team of Night Girl 002/Althea Bleekman, Ice Cool Bailey/ Gina Ruck, Catherston Nutsafe/Ella McEwen, and Killacorran Blue/Eliza Stoddart won the silver medal.

26 Colts were presented for inspection in Britain in 2008. 10 colts passed visual and veterinarian inspection and were entered in class 1 of the BCPS stud book. A judges day will be held in Warwickshire agricultural college on Saturday 18 October.

CANADA: A team of Connemaras again went into battle in Canada in the “Battle of the breeds” at Spruce Meadows, Alberta, in September. The Canadian Connemara team has performed extremely well in past years. Events covered are show jumping, obstacle driving, barrel racing, trail and compulsory driving skills. In the show jumping there was an error of

height in the jeopardy jumping, making the fence stand at four feet. This did not bother the 13.2hh Rory (smallest pony in the competition) who flew it with ease. He and a thoroughbred were the only two the successfully negotiate this fence. Rory finished 2nd. In the obstacle driving “Peso” decided to jump the water obstacle and this gave her driver a real thrill. Barrels were down in the barrel racing and the team finished the competition in 5th place. A brilliant team of mules were placed 1st.

FINLAND: Three new stallions are available to Finnish breeders for 2008/2009 season. Two are Finnish bred. Rockfield Wizard (Innellan Kestrel – Rockfield Scaramé), a 4 year old, will go back for final inspection in two years. Eternal Flake (Symphatil Hazy Becks – Apris Carolina), a 5-year old, will go back for ispection again next year. Eternal Flake’s grand sire is Frederiksminde Hazy Marvel and was bred north in Kolari in Lapland. The third stallion available is 16-year old Ashfield Cathal Crobdhearg. Bred by the late Jimmy Jones, he is by Ormond Oliver from the Carna Bobby mare Ashfield Lor Sparrow, and is leased by president Tuula.

Latest news from Finland is that the breed show was a great success. Libby Petch attended to judge. The weather was good, ponies behaved, therefore people were happy and the weekend was blessed with the attendance of a representative from the Irish Embassy. The show was well reported on the horse board’s website and on the German society’s website also. Truly excellent program organisation from the PR officer Satu Pitkänen.

(JT: I have just completed reading a novel centered in the far north of Finland. Lapland is heavily written about. I now feel that I almost have been in Lapland!)

UNITED STATES: An excellent article from the USA features the Dun Roche mare line. Dun Roche, a daughter of Noble Star carried the Connemara pony stud book number 773. She is recorded as having one foal, a filly foaled in 1943. She is by the stallion Creganna Winter and was called Winter Roche. This mare had 11 foals, one of which was named Finney Master and was exported to France and then Sweden. This stallion was a great sire and was awarded elite breeding stallion status in Sweden. The daughters of Winter Roche were themselves good brood mares and as a result the line has spread world wide. The file has in all 8 pages of detail, photos and extended blood lines. Unfortunately it is too long for this newsletter but those interested should contact the ACPS Secretary Marnel Eyles and I am sure a copy will be on its way to you ASAP. Well worth the read, don’t miss getting a copy!

BITS AND PIECES: In reading various Horse and Pony magazines etc. several interesting remarks in reader’s letters have appeared. One writer was most concerned: “The trend for some of our native ponies to become “horses” continues… classes are designed to show the best traits of a particular type… but when it comes to native ponies, we have a particular responsibility to safeguard the characteristics that they have achieved by natural selection and that allowed their survival. The breed standard clearly states that the Connemara should not exceed 148 cm. We cannot expect all prospective purchases to be discerning enough to buy over height ponies… But the judges have a responsibility not to place these animals in classes restricted to M&M ponies. I have always considered an animal that measures over 14.2hh or 148cms to be a horse!” – Interesting observation and one for all to remember!

From “Horse and Hound”: Connemara Ponies were able to compete in working hunter classes at Dublin show in 2008. Is someone finally recognising that the Connemara pony is a definite performance pony? The ICCPS certainly does and hence the development from the 2008 meeting in Clifden, April 2008, of moving to strongly foster the role of the performance Connemara. Given true conformation, movement and balance etc. it can equal and in fact perform better than many of the equines that it competes against. Just read the heading at the top of the page!

New Connemara pony publications: Tearna Goldston, an Australian Connemara breeder and enthusiast has been researching the Connemara breed in Australia for a number of years with the intention of putting her work to paper. Tearna last year realized that the project had become so incredibly large that her book has broadened to three books. The first focusing on the Cannon Ball line and the stallion mares in Australia, the second focuses on Connemara Boy and the Mountain Lad line families and the third book on the Carna Dun and Clonkeehan Auratum lines. It is expected that the publications will go to print early in 2009.

From “Native Pony”: A Fell pony breeder, in discussing M&M judges (and not just these I may add) made this comment: “A big worry is that M&M judges seem to think that you need a different type of pony to do ridden classes….. they should be judged against the breed standard in whatever sphere they are competing.” Further in the article, in talking of “type” he stated “it is impossible to replicate the environment that made these ponies what they are today, but all we can do is to run our ponies as near that ideal as possible.” Does this ring a bell somewhere within our own ponies and type!

On another page talking about the Exmoor pony – M&M judges were not familiar with them, and one comment made was that the Exmoor was at the bottom of the line because “it didn’t move like a Welsh” – this further enhances our need to ensure our judges have the right credentials! A very special thanks to “Native Pony” for their support to all the native Pony breeds both within and outside of the British Isles.

The 2008 spring festival in England saw a Connemara pony winning the Connemara/New Forest novice championship, and the overall workers’ champion was a Connemara pony.

And finally – if you can get a copy of “Native Pony” June/July edition, turn to page 16 and read “Natives can do Dressage”. It is a delightful article and once again tells the story “anything you can do, I can do better”. The 16 year old Connemara mare – Corellian Asset (Spinway Comet – Hungry Hall Beret) has progressed from unaffiliated dressage through to her current level of “advanced medium”. Now that is an achievement! Asset’s owner/rider Samantha Gee tells the story of Asset’s training and need for a different approach to her training and how she adopted normal training to meet the physical and mental attributes of this wonderful pony. The usual Connemara nature was always there asking “why?” Then replying “OK, if that is what you want, explain it and we will get on with it!” It is the old story – the Connemara will do and can do almost anything – but you must explain to them why!

Well that brings us to the end of what is really the first issue of the new publication to promote the Connemara pony. Several societies have indicated that a long newsletter and certainly one with photographs tends to clog some computers and so I find that I have to précis some reports and leave out photos. But do not despair and do not stop sending the reports and photos, because I am using these articles to send to the now increasing equine magazines that are asking for material. “The Native Pony”, “Horse and Hound”, “Irish Horse and Pony” and the “Irish Field” are some to whom I have sent articles that you have forwarded to me.

Thank you to those who have provided material. It has been beautiful to sit and read and transcribe to this publication.

As Tuula said in her last report to you, I can only continue to promote IF I have your support, your input with material, and really good stories on performance – whatever the field – so that I can get the national and international equine magazines to print the word on our ponies. YOU PROVIDE – I WILL PUSH – THE MAGAZINES WILL PUBLISH!

Down Under!