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Marieta Salas: “A good breeder allows the horse to be a horse”

iCheval Savoir recently interviewed Marieta Salas of the Ses Planes Arabian Stud. Marieta has bred Arabian horses for nearly fifty years in several different countries, Majorca, Spain and the US. Here are some of her views on Arabian horse breeding.

iCheval Savoir: I often hear that Arabian horses are only good for showing and endurance. So what are the characteristics of each according to you? Can the same horse be successful in the show ring as well as in endurance?

Marieta Salas

Marieta Salas: In theory, for the show ring besides good conformation and charisma you need a beautiful typical Arabian horse. Beauty is not necessary for endurance. The essentials are good conformation, soundness and a very good temperament so as to make the most of his efforts. Both horses (in theory) must be well made with good conformation. However, the “type” factor is not relevant when it comes to endurance. A pretty face is never enough to win an endurance race. But, in judging “pretty faces” it is critical that we do not forget about conformation.

The show ring action is more charisma than movement. “Snort and blow” is often mistaken for “good action”

iC.S. What do you look for finally as breeder and as handler?

M.S. As a breeder I like horses that represent the true Arabian type. Refinement, balance, movement and charisma are very, very important to me. A good temperament is essential as I am around my horses a lot, so I must have horses that are easy to live with. These are all the traits that make an Arabian horse irresistible to me. But, as the Bedouin said, “moral character is more important than physical beauty”.

Abha Uadi
Abha Uadi (El Perfecto x Magna Begum). © Coll. Marieta Salas

iC.S. We sometimes hear that the Spanish and Polish Arabians are the best under saddle? Is it true according to you?

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Article publié le 30-10-2013

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