Memories of the British Nationals: Dancing Queen

Continuing with memories from the British National Championships in this Centenary year for the Arab Horse Society, we feature our next British National Champion. This Crabbet mare graced the front of The Arabian Magazine, and she was a very popular champion.

Queenie 34-266-28

Dancing Queen – by Alexia Ross
The Princess Muna Saddle of Honour has to be the most fascinating and impressive class at the Arab Horse Society’s National Show. Whatever else I miss, I never miss this coming together of mares and their descendants through the female line in a contest of family groups that puts the Arabian mare in her rightful and exalted position at the centre of our breeding efforts. It is a class that so often showcases out of the ordinary broodmares.

Dancing Queen is one of my favourite Princess Muna champions although admittedly, the line up of honourable winners contains many favourites of mine. Like many other such mares, “Queenie” boasts multiple connections to other winners of both the Princess Muna Saddle of Honour and the longer standing Sire Produce Group class. It is a class that boasts many long-term contributors to the breed in its roll call rather than mere show stars.

Dancing Queen won the Princess Muna Saddle of Honour in 2002 when she was 27 years of age. She was a Kehaileh Dajanieh by strain going back to one of the Crabbet Stud’s most important foundation mares Dajania Or.Ar, the beginning of the famous “N” line. Despite the changes in the halter show-ring over the past decade or more, Queenie was a mare of 100% Crabbet bloodlines. The most recent import in her pedigree was the stallion Skowronek, foaled in 1909 and added to the Crabbet Stud by Lady Wentworth. A class winner at the National Show herself in her younger days, Queenie aged well, living to age 30 and leaving an impressive legacy behind.

34-269-OA Dancing Queen

Her group on the day was made up of her supremely elegant Crabbet/GSB daughter Queen’s Topaz by Midnight Gold with an outstanding collection of grandchildren out of Topaz by Russian sires. These included the future HOYS Champion Toman and Teeba, now dam of the stunning young stallion HT Tobago. Beautiful fronts, traditional depth with good limbs and free, athletic movement characterise all members of this family.

Queenie was a classically-bred medium-sized mare of considerable style. She was by Dancing King from Ludo daughter Ludmilla and was bred by the influential Moulton Stud of the Wrights. Her sire was a full brother to 1970 winner of the Princess Muna, Tarantella, and to the stallion Sunlight’s Allegro who sired another winning mare, Indian Cloud, in 1987. Queenie was also a great-granddaughter of multiple Sire Produce Group winners Oran and Blue Domino.

Dancing Queen had 15 foals, most of them for Jane Kadri’s Al Waha Stud and her Crabbet/GSB son Daas (by Imad) still stands at Al Waha. He and full sister Dahisha both won championships in-hand while Dahisha has a stunning filly by another Crabbet/GSB sire, the WAHO winner and ridden show star and dressage horse PHA Silvern Risalm. Senior daughter Queens Topaz is best remembered today for her gaudily-marked but exquisite daughter Tamira as well as the stallion Toman, but they are just two of an ever-expanding family of high-achieving show horses and performers. Queenie may be a champion of the past, but her line looks set to continue on into the Arabian horses’ future.

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This post comes from a series we first ran in The Arabian Magazine in 2005. Called Malvern Calling, the series celebrated British National Champions from Malvern, Ascot and even Kempton Park, and different readers shared their favourite memory from the British Nationals. There is always something special about watching the moment a horse is crowned British National Champion, so please enjoy the memories that will be shared here over the coming month.

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