Abbas Lad (Aberlou) the sire of Aberdeen Road, grand prix and world cup

show jumper owned by Maurice Beatson and Sally Clark has been sold to the

Kingdom of Bahrain.

His majesty the King of Bahrain, Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa is the new owner.

Show jumping is a hugh sport in the middle east, with Bahrain hosting the major

International competitions that attract riders from around the world.

It is the first time New Zealand has exported show jumpers to Bahrain.

The Stud has promising young horses by Abbas Lad from Rainbow Appache Two (Kingy) daughters.

These young horses have the best proven blood lines from both Sires.

Below:  Read on and discover the connection between Aberlou and Kurdistan


Proven Stallions ! Great Jumping Blood

The Kurdistan Story

Abbas Lad

Rainbow Appache Two

Blood Lines  

Below some PROVEN horses by Rainbow Appache Two (Kingy)

Rainbow Anakiwa & Sally Clark Olympic Silver Mediallist for

New Zealand Team

Rainbow Pomahaka &

Giovanni Menchi

Italian Olympic rider

Rainbow Imagine (Ace) Proven Son

  of Rainbow Appache Two (Kingy)

          Kurdistan blood X3,

        Salmagundi blood X3

Go to Results Imagine Stock
to view some of his offspring
Go to Stud News, features Imagine (Ace) some of his off spring, also his brothers and sisters from his Sire and Dams side.Stud_News.html

TB Jumping Blood Lines

Kurdistan was imported to New Zealand in the early 1950s.  Kurdistan was Champion

NZ sire of jumpers four times from 1965-66 to 1968-69.

A half brother by the St Leger winner Tehren to the champion English sprinter

Abernant, and grandson of the original “Flying Filly” Mumtaz Mahal.

Kurdistan placed over sprint distances but preferred longer distances where he won four.

He stood at Chelandry Stud with Bill Hazlett until his death in 1970. 

Kurdistan left a total of 256 winners.

Baghdad Note(VRC Melbourne Cup) Gay Master (VRC  Sydney Cup)

Eiffel Tower (VRC Wellington Cup)

Kumai, Koral, Kutati, Chango, Shangri-La, Magic Touch, Redlo, Pole Star and

Bevlyn were stand out jumpers.

One of Kurdistans best was the amazing Eiffel Tower, who won ten races on the flat

including the 1964 Wellington Cup, and won the Grand National Hurdles twice.

In 1967 the Great Northern Steeplechase was a preformance that went down in history.

Eiffel Tower ridden by Bill Hillis, completely failed to handle the water jump on the first round and lost about fifty lengths. Horse and rider got going again and slowely began

to pick up the rest of the field, one by one he past his rivals and by the third round there

was only one horse in front of him. That horse fell, and Eiffel Tower went on to win the

race from a late challenge by Ringlock. This feat remains unmatched in Great Northern racing history.

Abernant is the Grandsire of Aberlou.

Abernant and Kurdistan are half brothers from the same Dam.

Both these fillies 

have the best of

Proven jumping   


  by Abbas Lad   


  from Rainbow  

  Appache Two

  (Kingy) mares

  Kurdistan (X2)

Salmagundi (X2)

Rainbow Stud horses have over seventy years of traced breeding, from the 1930’s.

The Stud over many years has strengthened the genes, so that they dominate from generation to generation.

Rainbow horses all carry one or two infusions of “Salmagundi” thoroughbred blood. “Salmagundi” and “Kurdistan” took top billing among 20th century Southland thoroughbred sires. “Salmagundi” sired standouts “Excellency” “Signal Officer” “Prawns” and “St Bruno” also “Salmon Spear” “ Shadamai” “ Eriskay” “Full Play” “Wantwood” and  of course “Florida” the dam of Australian racing immortal “Tulloch” he was the first horse in Australia to win 100,000 pounds and the best horse trained  by legendary “TJ” Tommy Smith.  

 “Kurdistan” also features in our blood lines, some in double doses.

 “Kurdistan” left some notable jumping horses on and off the race track.

 His stock was considered popular and classy, there were no better examples than “Kumai” “Baghdad Note” “Shangri La” “Gay Master” “Koral” “The Wanderer” “Eiffel Tower” and “Teaka”.

“Eiffel Tower” had the title of Southland Racehorse of the Century. He won the Wellington, Invercargill and Riverton Cups on the flat, two Grand National Hurdles and the Great Northern Steeples.  Another of great distinction was “ Koral”. I remember being told that if “Koral” was two lengths behind a horse at a hurdle, he would be beside the other horse when he landed, such was his scope over a fence. “Koral” won the Grand National Steeples. “Kurdistan” was a versatile progenitor whose stock, both fillies and colts, excelled as sprinters, stayers and renowned jumpers. It is no surprisethat some of the best show jumpers can be traced back  to “Kurdistan” blood.  One from memory would be “Jeep Super Moth”.

 “Precipitation” along with “Kurdistan” is the most prepotent jumping blood in sport horse history. “Precipitation” also features strongly in our bloodlines with most in double doses  as well.

Bellborough” “Imperial Guard” were other 20th Century Southland sires to make respectable impressions. Both these stallions have left impressive jumping horses and there blood is also included in Rainbow Stud bloodlines.

Rainbow Stud has also incorporated the thoroughbred blood of “Abbas Lad” by “Aberlou”. Whose sire “Aberconway” is by “Abernant”.

“Abernant” and “Kurdistan” were half brothers out of the same mare.                                                      

One of “Rainbow Appache Two” (Kingydaughters carries two infusion's of “Night Raid”  blood. “ Phar Lap” was by “Night Raid” and he was undoubtedly one of the most amazing race horses of all time.

Phar Lap won the Melbourne Cup in 1930. He was born in Timaru in 1926 from a mare called “ Entreaty”. Phar Lap died of colic on the 5th of April 1932 while racing in USA.  It is stated that his heart is the largest of any thoroughbred in history. “Phar Lap” dominated the racing scene is his time.


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They come in all shapes and sizes, but horses carrying the Aberlou bloodline have some things in common: good movement, jumping technique and heart. The Northland-bred stallion sired some of New Zealand's best eventers - most famously Messiah, Delta and Alibi - and although he died in 1996, Aberlou's name continues to appear with remarkable regularity in show jumping and eventing programmes.
A grey 16.1hh Thoroughbred born in 1970, Aberlou was bred to race by the Jacentho family, but when George and Kath Cann bought him in conjunction with Don Harrison and Neville Clotworthy as a five-year-old, the horse was still unbroken. Aberlou's father, the English horse Aberconway (by Abernant), was known as a sire of good jumpers, and his dam, Patricia Lou, was by Revelation, who bred many champions, including the Auckland Cup winner Rev. Aberlou was never shown or raced.
"We'd seen a horse by Aberconway jumping at Whangarei Show, and he was the most glorious jumper. He won the champion hunter there three years in a row," recalls Kath Cann. "We thought that was the style we wanted, and so we bought Aberlou with the idea of breeding some jumpers."
"It was the first time we had ever tried standing a stallion, and Ab was very easy. We just used to leave him loose and take the mare up to the rails. He would tease the mare over the fence, turn a circle and wait for us to open the gate. He would stand while you took his cover (rug) off, serve the mare, give a big sigh, and walk straight back out the gate again. He was marvellous to handle."
Initially, Aberlou had a real mixture of mares, including some ponies. Carol Byles' Messiah, later to become world champion, came from the first year's crop.
George and Kath Cann stood Aberlou at Ohaewai for several years, before Don Harrison had him at Dargaville, where he broke the horse in as a ten-year-old. Aberlou was then sold to the Lands and Survey Department, in Whakatane, where Ron Cornelius was manager, and used him over various mares there. When the department was restructured, the Canns bought Aberlou back, by which time he had developed something of a reputation as a sporthorse sire, and was attracting better quality mares. They stood him at Kaikohe, and kept him until he was humanely destroyed at home, at the age of 26.
"There were a few knockers," says Kath. "One comment was, 'He's nothing to look at - if he hadn't been grey, nobody would have bothered with him.' But when his stock started to do well, he went from having a dozen mares in a season to 60."
Kath's strongest memories of Aberlou concern his calm temperament, and 'lovely action', which he seemed to pass on to his progeny without fail.
"He had a wonderful nature. A lot of people said that his offspring were fiery and difficult, but they were very sensitive, and if you treated them right they were good."
Kataia-based Jo Shepherd-da Silva and her mother, Gena, have bred and produced more successful Aberlou horses than anyone. Delta was their first, and she arrived as a six-year-old with a chronic bucking problem. Still a teenager, Jo was supposed to school the mare on, but ended up keeping her, and she went from novice to advanced in one season. Jo campaigned her in England before handing the ride over to Blyth Tait. Delta had four foals, including a filly by Westminster.
"Apparently Delta only started bucking after an accident (they were getting on her and the saddle slipped), but it never went away, and she was always paranoid. She'd never buck after you moved forward a couple of steps, which was her saving grace; otherwise she probably would have ended up in a tin, because she was quite dangerous."
"I started eventing her, not knowing that much and not knowing she was ever going to be a champion, but I was really lucky to get her. She used to do crazy things, like miss out strides, and she was so bold, honest and clever. Blyth actually tried to buy her off me when he was show jumping Messiah - he offered me $6000 for her - but I said no, because she was pretty much all I had then. Even Blyth says that, to this day, she was the best cross-country horse he has ridden."
"Delta is small - she's 15.3 hh - and looking at her you wonder how a horse like her could do what she's done. I would never choose a horse like that now, because she is just not the type that you want to take eventing."
After Delta's success, Jo and Gena started collecting more Aberlou horses: Baxter, Curious George, Sylvester, Torcida and Eze are just a few who've passed through their hands. Tactics (bred by Jocelyn Bailey) won the Taupo CCI** and went advanced with Jo, before being sold to Spain.
."People who are in love with Aberlou will say that every horse was a fantastic jumper, but it wasn't. I would say probably a quarter of them were fantastic jumpers, and about half were good jumpers. They were very bold horses and I found them really easy to train. Whatever you wanted them to do cross-country-wise they would just do it, and most of them had good movement."
Aberjack: the laid-back stallion
Mark Todd had the stallion Aberjack, by Aberlou, in the United Kingdom. He was bred in Northland by Anna Guy, and his dam was the B Grade show jumper, Miss Charlie (Ranger-Relvaro by Alvaro). Aberjack was a medium-size 16hh bay, and Mark bought him specifically to stand as a stallion, because of his type and the fact that he was by Aberlou. He went to advanced in the UK and was placed in all his starts, but unfortunately didn't compete much; he developed a rare virus that kept invading his system, although he did get to one three-day, Blarney Castle CCI**, where he was second.
"He had the most amazing temperament, particularly for a stallion," says Mark. "You could take him anywhere, and anyone could ride him. We used to compete him and cover mares at the same time. His only fault was that he was sometimes too laid-back and lazy, and I would have to ride him with sharp spurs and a long whip. He was a great mover and had a fantastic jump with excellent technique. He was also very brave across country."
Mark points out that Aberlou's sire, Aberconway, was by the phenomenally influential sire Abernant, who can be seen in a lot of Warmblood pedigrees; he was a used extensively to refine a lot of the heavier Warmbloods. Aberconway's maternal grandsire, Big Game, was also a recognised jumping influence.
"I wouldn't say any of the Aberlous I have known have been great equine beauties, but they are mostly good types and athletic. The only other Aberlou I had was a horse called Warratah. He was a little, wiry horse who had quite a fiery temperament, but was a totally brilliant jumper. He would have definitely been top class, but sadly was not sound enough. I think the thing that stands out about Aberlou horses is the fact that they all JUMP, and that is a huge plus when you are trying to breed a horse for that specific job."
Aberjack stood for a season at Clissy and Edward Bleekman's Whorridge Farm Stud in Devon. Afterwards, they sent him to the States, where he stood at Denny Emerson's Tamarack Hill Farm in Vermont.
"He has proved very popular over there, covering books of about 65 mares each season so Aberjack will literally have progeny all over the world, which is very fitting for a horse of his ability."
The new guard
WEG squad member Kate Lambie has had two mares by Aberlou: Nufarm Alibi (who competed at the WEG in Jerez) and Victoria's Secret, who she evented to intermediate before selling her to the Cottle yard as a show jumper.
"Both are quite similar, in that they are absolute bitches to catch!" says Kate. Victoria's Secret had a halter on permanently, and it can still take up to 25 minutes to lay a finger on Alibi. While they are good to handle, says Kate, there is an underlying sensitivity and nervousness and it takes them a long time to develop trust.
Kate didn't know Alibi was by Aberlou when she bought her, and only found that out afterwards. She saw the mare at a showjumping show, and asked if she was for sale - she was. Kate says in some ways 'Lou' has been easy, but there have been hiccups along the way: at one novice trial, she was stopped in front of a bullfinch drop, and when re-started Kate intended to just pop over - instead Alibi ballooned over the fence and, landing in a heap, gave herself a fright, and ran straight through a fence. She also bolted off a cliff with a previous owner.
Event rider and trainer Megan Finlayson, from Waimate North, has several horses with Aberlou bloodlines, her most successful to date being Lion Heart, one-time New Zealand national advanced three-day champion.
"They can all jump and they can all move," says Megan of the Aberlou horses. "But they are sensitive, so you have to be a certain type of rider to handle them. And they either buck or they don't - my mare bucks, but Lion Heart doesn't. All the ones I've had anything to do with have been really special, and if they like you, they are totally in love with you: all these guys are waiting for me at the gate before I get there."
Megan believes they are probably late developers; although Lion Heart went advanced as an eight-year-old, when he turned ten she noticed a big development in his strength and brain: "You can't rush an Aberlou - if you tried to, they would say no."
It would seem that the influence of Aberlou is on the wane - at the 2007 NZ Championships at Taupo, only Lion Heart bore his name, and surely Lionheart is due to call it a day.

Roll of Honour

MESSIAH (Blyth Tait): World Champion, Olympic individual bronze, team silver. 16 hh brown gelding, out of the Thoroughbred Portia. Produced to B Grade show jumping by Colin and Penny MacIntosh. Amazingly talented, but described by Blyth as having a 'fragile' temperament, and became increasingly difficult at competitions as he grew older.

DELTA (Blyth Tait): 2nd Badminton, 2nd Burghley, 1st Scottish Open Championships. 16hh bay mare, out of a Northland rodeo mare, bred by Ken Lewis. Produced and owned by Jo Shepherd-da Silva. A quirky 'bush pony' with a four-beat canter, owing to her dash of standardbred blood, but a cross-country machine.

EZE (Blyth Tait): Grey gelding, bred by Mary Glossop, and produced by Jo Shepherd. Advanced eventer,. Quite different to Messiah and Delta: 'A good technician, but really rather lazy.'

ALIBI (Kate Lambie): 5th Badminton, 1st Puhinui CCI***, 2nd and 4th Taupo CCI***. Bay mare. Started her career show jumping, before Kate produced her as an eventer. Dam was Della Rose, by the Irish Draught stallion, Kingsway Diamond. On her dam's side, Alibi is a granddaughter of the prolific Thoroughbred broodmare Rosica.

LION HEART (Megan Finlayson): 1st Taupo CCI***, Young Event Horse winner. 17.1hh bay gelding. A laid-back character; late maturer.

CURIOUS GEORGE (owned by Greer Drinkrow): 2nd Taupo CCI***, ridden by Vaughn Jefferis.

Also: Fair Child (advanced eventer, full sister to Lion Heart); Gentle George (advanced eventer, gone to England); Gemima Puddleduck (winning Grand Prix show jumper); Tactics (advanced eventer, sold overseas); Aberrose (intermediate eventer); Six Thirty (intermediate eventer); Mrs Robinson (intermediate eventer, sold overseas); Greenwood (intermediate eventer, sold overseas); Cause For Applause (show jumper); Aberwho (show jumper); Abacus (show jumper); Aba Chief (show jumper and intermediate eventer); Abalon (champion hack and hunter); The Gambler (champion hunter and intermediate eventer).
Keeping the line alive: commercial stallions by Aberlou
Abba's Lad
16.3hh brown stallion, standing at Cheleken Stud, Matakana. Dam: Thoroughbred mare by Lord Sassinoff. Bred by Ron Cornelius. Helen Rattray, of Cheleken Stud, describes him as very laid-back, and an excellent mover.
Progeny: Barbara Wallis' advanced eventer, Tried 'n' True; Jayne Craike's open medium dressage mare, Showfields Sunrise. Some offspring have also been sold overseas.
17hh grey stallion, standing at Kia Kaha Stud, Waimauku. Dam: Tinseltown, by Super Stud.
Owned by Diane Seager. Prior to this season, he stood at Croftlea Stud in Canterbury where he was well patronized by sporthorse breeders.
16hh grey stallion, standing at Paihia, owned by Debbie Langwell. Dam: Conquest (TB), by Frontal out of an Abridge Member mare.
15.3hh grey stallion, standing at Martin and Karen Gow's Craighaven Stud, Whakatane. 7/8 TB, 1/8 stationbred. The stud's foundation sire, and father of many of their current broodmares.



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