Published on Issue 2/2016 presented at the Menton Show
The Majesty of QR Marc
by Samantha Mattocks
QR Marc’s name is one that is known throughout the world. A champion and a sire of champions, this 11-year-old charismatic bay stallion is one that has transfixed Arabian breeders around the globe for over a decade. Bred in the US by Lou and Vicki Doyle of Quail Ridge Arabians, QR Marc very much calls Belgium home. There, he is proudly owned by Paul and Ria Gheysens of Knocke Arabians, and it is from this peaceful part of the world that QR Marc’s impact has spread – with tantalising results.I think that it is fair to say that QR Marc was always going to captivate people. His pedigree ensured that. As you look back through his family, some of the world’s best-known and admired names can be found at every step. While Marc is sired by Marwan Al Shaqab (Gazal Al Shaqab x Little Liza Fame by Fame VF), one of the most important stallions in modern breeding, it is well worth looking back further – for one horse does not make a line great; rather, it is a combination of many layers. QR Marc’s sire line is one of the most revered in history, going back to the 1934 straight Egyptian stallion Nazeer (Mansour x Bint Samiha by Kazmeen), a horse whose influence continues to be felt the world over, and not just limited to Egyptian circles, either. Nazeer’s son, Morafic (ex Mabrouka by Sid Abouhom out of Moniet El Nefous) is influential in QR Marc’s sire line, being the sire of both Shaikh Al Badi (ex Bint Maisa El Saghira by Nazeer out of Maisa) and also Khofo (ex Nabilahh by Anter out of Farasha), the sire in turn of the exceptional mare Bint Magidaa (ex Magidaa by Alaa El Din out of Maysa). Bint Magidaa was covered by Shaikh Al Badi in 1975 and the following year, Ruminaja Ali arrived in the world. This is a line that is repeated though his dam, with Ruminaja Ali as the great-great-grandsire on both sides of QR Marc’s pedigree. This line is a significant one not only in QR Marc’s sireline but indeed the world, as Ruminaja Ali covered the Ansata Ibn Halima (Nazeer x Halima by Sheikh Al Arab) daughter Bint Deenaa (ex Deenaa by Sameh out of Dahma II) and the result was the fabled 1988 bay straight Egyptian stallion Anaza El Farid. When crossed with the Polish mare Kajora (Kaborr x Edjora by Exelsjor), the resulting colt was the World Champion Stallion Gazal Al Shaqab, a living legend whose sons and grandsons have gone on to capture the hearts and imagination of the world, while his daughters have charmed and captivated. A further influx of Polish lines through the late mare Little Liza Fame (ex Katahza by Aza Destiny out of Afhar Rahza) followed. Her sire was the US National Champion Fame VF, himself a son of Bey Shah (Bay El Bey x Star of Ofir by Bask Llana) and out of the Crabbet/Gainey mare Raffoleta-Rose (Raffon x Leta Rose by Gamaar). When Little Liza Fame was crossed with Gazal Al Shaqab, the result was the three-time World Champion Marwan Al Shaqab, a horse who continues to captivate at 16 years of age.To look to QR Marc’s damline, we again see the influence of Ruminaja Ali, this time through his famed son Ali Jamaal (ex Heritage Memory by El Magato out of Heritage Labelle). There is also a further infusion of Polish and Gainey blood through the mare, The Dreamspinner. She is by the Bask grandson Aristo Kossak (Ariston x Four Winds Kalifa by Cytrys) and out of the Naborr granddaughter Myrilinan Acledo (Gai-Adventure x Jem Mar Amyri by Comar Azamyr). Ali Jamaal and The Dreamspinner were bred together in 1991 and the result was the deep bay stallion Magic Dream CAHR, a multiple champion in Canada and the US, and now based in South Africa. The final line is though QR Marc’s dam, Swete Dreams, a chestnut mare sired by Magic Dream and out of Kouream de Ment (Kouros x Rawhides Amenda by Bagdad of Rawhide out of Rawhides Nakota), who brings in a flavour of the Spanish Arabian bloodlines. QR Marc became an overnight sensation the moment that he was foaled in California, and it was a race against time to see who reached, and purchased, this superlative colt first. It would be Roxann Hart of Rohara Arabians in Orange Lake, Florida, who would first purchase QR Marc and breed from him, propelling him on to the global stage in the process. While at Rohara, QR Marc also made his debut in the show-ring, earning the titles of 2006 Unanimous Region 14 Sweepstakes Yearling Colt and 2006 US Nationals Reserve Champion Breeders Sweepstakes Colt. It was in Marc’s two-year old year that Paul Gheysens first encountered this young colt. Paul instantly saw his potential and purchased him. QR Marc was brought to Europe, and he has been the chief sire at Paul’s own Knocke Arabians ever since. QR Marc’s first show for Knocke Arabians was the inaugural Al Khalediah Arabian Horse Festival in 2008 in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The world paused as this magnificent colt entered the ring, and QR Marc left with what would be the first of many Gold Championship titles. From that moment, on, his name was synonymous with success. For the remainder of 2008, QR Marc was campaigned across Europe. He took the Junior Male Championship at the Elran Cup in Belgium and he finished the year as World Reserve Junior Male Champion in Paris. The next two seasons saw QR Marc’s attentions firmly focused on the breeding barn. As well as breeding to the famed mares of Knocke Arabians and private breeders, the young stallion was also used at the Polish State Studs of Janów Podlaski and Michalów, and he made a terrific impression on the mares there. Just some of the successful progeny born there include World Champion Zigi Zana (ex Zagrobla by Monogramm out of Zguba), multiple champion Piacenza (ex Primawera by Emigrant out of Premiera), Pogrom (ex Petla by Visbaden out of Petra) and Wieza Mocy (ex Wieza Marzen by Ekstern out of Wiazma), both champions in the US and Europe, and also Equator (ex Ekliptyka by Ekstern out of Ekspozycja), a World Champion and now a double champion in the United States. At Knocke Arabians, the results of QR Marc in the breeding barn were just as impressive, especially from the Polish mares that Paul and Ria love so much. Among the QR Marc sons, there is Espressivo (ex Emocja by Monogramm out of Emigracja), Reserve Junior Male Champion at Al Khalediah Arabian Horse Festival; Panthos KA (ex Palanga by Ekstern out of Panika), Emanos KA (ex Emantka by Eukaliptus out of Emanta), Bronze Junior Male Champion at the Dubai International Arabian Horse Championships; Pavorotto KA (ex Palanga), Gold Junior Male Champion at the Deauville Breeders’ Cup Finals; and Equiborn KA (ex Espadrilla by Monogramm out of Emancja), a double Silver World Champion as a junior.The daughters were just as beautiful, including those from the incredible black mare FS Magnums Madonna (Magnum Psyche x Tai Bey Brittney by Bey Shah), whose pedigree complements that of QR Marc so well. Her daughters with Marc include European Junior Female Champion Marc’s Star; Magnum’s Tulip, who has been so very successful in the show-ring; and Magnum’s Rose. Other QR Marc daughters at the farm include Magenta KA (ex Migracja by Gazal Al Shaqab out of Mandala); Penelope KA (ex Polonia by Ekstern out of Pasja), since sold and the current European Junior Female Champion; Orfa D’Arab KA (ex OSO Axotica by Monogramm out of Algoda), who has won so many titles; and Nadira KA (ex CN Neville by Delmar out of AF Golena), Gold Champion Filly in Bruges.Having proved himself as a sire, QR Marc made a highly anticipated return to the show-ring in 2012, an event that happened with the collaboration of Dubai Arabian Horse Stud. QR Marc’s first two shows were in the Middle East – the Abu Dhabi National Championships and the Dubai International Arabian Horse Championships – and, led by Paolo Capecci, he left both shows with the Gold Senior Male title. From there, Europe called and QR Marc went to the All Nations’ Cup in Aachen, claiming another Gold championship title. There was just one show left for QR Marc that year, the Paris World Championships where he had been reserve three times. 2012, however, was QR Marc’s year and he was untouchable – not only did he take the World Champion Stallion title, but his progeny also had an incredible show: Wieza Mocy took the Gold Junior Female World Championship while Equator was named Silver Junior Male World Champion; QR Marc sired five of the World Top Tens in the junior championships, including Knocke Arabians’ own Emerson KA (ex Elerina by Ekstern out of Emantka), the incredible Orfa D’Arab KA, and Espressivo. While QR Marc has retired from the show-ring, his progeny continue to excel in the show-ring and, last year in Paris at the World Championships, QR Marc was named Leading Sire, a huge honour for Paul and Ria, and worthy recognition of all that this young stallion has achieved. Equiborn, especially, assisted his sire to this title as he took his second Silver World Championship title, and it is only a matter of time before Equiborn takes a worthy Paris Gold. This article only focuses on the history of QR Marc, and his progeny born between his arrival in Europe and his glorious 2012 World Championship. More in depth features will follow over coming editions, and the progeny of this magnificent stallion will be looked at in more detail.However, with the show season now underway here in Europe, we can look forward to seeing QR Marc progeny continue to shine in the ring. There is still much more to come from this stallion, and I can’t wait to see what the coming months, and years, bring.