Around the Region Horse & Pony Aug-Oct 2016

One Hot Krymsun
by Judith Scrimger
    The Canadian Bred Horse of the Year Award for 2016 went to a horse bred and born in Atlantic Canada. The Equine Canada Award, given to a horse that holds an outstanding national and/or international performance record that has helped to enhance the reputation and visibility of Canadian-bred horses, went to One Hot Krymsun, a 1999 Quarter Horse stallion bred by Herb Best and foaled at Krymsun Farms in New Glasgow, Nova Scotia. An American Quarter Horse Association All-Time Leading Performance Sire, One Hot Krymsun is out of Krymsun Jet Set, an AQHA-leading dam.  
    Equine Canada noted that One Hot Krymsun is a champion competitor in his own right, with three AQHA World Championships in Open Western Pleasure, four All American Congress Championships, and three reserves. His offspring have so far racked up more than $1.3 million in earnings, more than 23,700 AQHA points, 89 Superior Awards, 17 AQHA Champion Titles, 1,284 All Around wins and reserves, and an AQHA Superhorse title. In addition, he was the number-one leading sire in Germany.
    Herb Best is well known as a breeder, trainer, and coach. He knew he had a good one when he bred the mare that produced One Hot Krymsun. “I had bred a full sister to him and showed her as a yearling at Congress the year before. She placed first with two of the four judges and I actually sold her during the class. A buyer was waiting on the sidelines. When I took (Krymsun) to the Congress the next year (2000), there were several people waiting to put offers on him.” Best says that Atlantic Canada is a long way from the action, and it’s a challenge to develop horses to their potential. “I can’t hit the road (the way they do in the U.S.).” The Oklahoma buyer, Rebecca Bailey, who purchased his full sister the year before, fell in love with Krymsun and took him to the top.  
    New Glasgow may be a little off the beaten AQHA track, but Best’s Krymsun Farms horses and clients have won plenty of awards on the Maritime Quarter Horse Association, the New England Circuits, and at Congress in Ohio, where the best of the best compete. Now they can claim a Canadian Horse of the Year Award for one of their own.

Fun and games
    Prince Phillip Games (PPG) is an excellent way to teach fundamental riding skills while having fun. The team competition is played by Pony Clubs all around the world, and is growing here in the Maritimes.
    On May 22, 35 young riders from four different clubs competed at the annual Regional Prince Phillip Games Championships hosted by Evangeline Pony Club. Four divisions from Masters to C Level challenged for the coveted Silver Cup at Rohan Wood Stables in Aylesford, Nova Scotia. 
    Winning teams included the Evangeline Masters Team of Geordie Backhouse, Victoria Mastin, Rebecca Holleman, Azlyn Bezanson, and Kaycee Ward – who will be representing N.S. at Nationals in Edmonton August 25-27. The Evangeline team of Kylee Roberts, Makayla Gerrior, Chloe Peckford, and Chloe Slauenwhite captured the B level (any age just starting out in PPG) and the Evangeline/West Valley Scramble Team of Lauren Tattersall (WV), Jordan Emmett (WV), Sadie Slauenwhite (Evangeline), and Anneli Visser (Evangeline) took home first place in the C level (walk/trot). The winning A level team of Chelsey Keddy, Michal Chega, Ruthie Mullen, Ida Hudson, and Shayna Keddy, also from Evangeline Pony Club, will also be hosting Nationals September 1-3 at Rohan Wood Stables. 
    In other exciting news, Evangeline A level team member and PPG veteran Michal Chega will be taking part in the International Mounted Games Exchange Camp in Ontario this September. She will be vying for a spot on Team Canada against the top 14-year-old PPG riders in the country. Team Canada will be heading to Great Britain in 2018 to be a part of the International Meet.

Nova Scotia Haflinger Club hosts National Meetingby Judith Scrimger
    When the Canadian Haflinger Association decided to hold its Annual General Meeting in Nova Scotia this April, the national executive didn’t know they’d be seeing the Haflinger breed in a whole new light. As the host of the event, the Nova Scotia Haflinger Club executive organized an afternoon obstacle clinic with Janice Bennett of Middleton, Nova Scotia. The Haflinger is a versatile breed that works well in English or Western tack, but is better known as a draft or carriage horse. For most of the 40 participants at the meeting, it was the first time they had worked with their horses in-hand, where the focus was on developing a respectful relationship that builds confidence in the horse while working over obstacles.
    National President Steve Armstrong of Waterford, Ontario, told Bennett, “This is the most engaged and interactive clinic I’ve ever seen with Haflingers. While I do some of these things with my own horses at home, I now understand better the definition and purpose of groundwork.”
    Bennett came to groundwork and obstacle work after 20 years of barrel racing and cattle penning. “I always did the basics with my young horses, but I didn’t have the same belief in groundwork that I do now.” When Bennett’s four-year-old gelding lost an eye, he became increasingly anxious. “I realized that I was not safe when I was on his left side or under saddle, and I had to learn how to do things differently with him. 
    “It doesn’t matter whether you ride your horse or drive it, you still have to be the leader to that horse,” says Bennett. “At any point, teaching the horse (any new skill or behaviour) is easier from the ground first. It makes it so much easier for them (to understand what you want) when you then put a saddle or harness on it.”
    Halflinger owners responded well to the clinic. Even those from out of province got a chance to work one-on-one with Bennett. The event was held at Wallace River Haflingers and Equestrian Centre, and owner Gillian Allan was happy to lend a horse to those who wanted to give obstacle training a try.
    Armstrong noted that this was one of the most successful annual meetings both in numbers and activities for the Association. Members from four provinces were able to attend the meeting and learn about recent changes to the breed registry. 
    “The registry is now mare-based, which means breeders can, for the first time, import semen through the World Haflinger Sport Horse and Breeding Association. This allows for more diversity in the gene pool in Canada and an opportunity to breed to quality European and United States-based stallions,” Armstrong told the group.
    The Association, which uses the Canadian Livestock Records Corporation to manage registrations, has recently gone to DNA testing for the registration of Haflingers.
    Haflingers are growing in popularity, but one of the challenges for the Association is to get those with one or two animals to recognize that membership in local and national associations can be of great value. The well-organized and well-sponsored AGM held in Nova Scotia was a good step in that direction, as many new owners and those considering buying a Haflinger attended the event.