Memories of the British Nationals: King Cotton Gold

Continuing with memories from the British National Championships in this Centenary year for the Arab Horse Society, we feature our next British National Champion. We are going back to the 1970s for this one – a very popular and enduring stallion.

King Cotton Gold as a yearling at Kempton. Photonews photo
Photonews photo

King Cotton Gold – by Sue Jones
I vividly remember the 1972 Nationals when I stood and watched in awe as many very famous horses were paraded before me. The year was a special one as the winner of the Junior Male award was the tall, well-conformed, bay yearling colt, King Cotton Gold by Fari II out of Dreaming Gold (by Blue Domino). He was expertly shown by his owner/breeder Caroline Murray and was well-grown and mature for his age.

King Cotton Gold. Finke photo
Finke photo

King Cotton Gold was by the wonderful bay stallion Fari II, also owned by Caroline. In fact, the year was conspicuous because Fari II won the Senior Male title at the same show. This charismatic, dominant bay stallion has had a major effect on breeding in this country and was a very worthy winner at this particular show. He, too, was by Blue Domino, as was Dancing Gold, the dam of King Cotton Gold. Both Fari and King Cotton Gold bore a resemblance to Farette, Fari’s dam.

In 1972, we were still putting the senior and junior winners against each other for the Supreme Male Champion of the show. On this occasion, the battle was fought between father and son. It was a tense time but fascinating to watch, particularly as the yearling, King Cotton Gold, was judged the winner of the Supreme title.

King Cotton Gold. Sweet photo
Sweet photo

This prestigious title was even more prestigious when won in this manner. How often in the history of our National Show has the offspring beaten the sire? This was an exceptional achievement. A truly memorable year, with memorable winners.

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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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