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Mares and Foals

Flower of Scotland - British Foal 2003

Robert DonaldsonScottish breeder Robert Donaldson of Viewmont Stud, Peterhead, is no stranger to winning championships – for the last several years he has certainly had plenty of experience!

His latest win with his colt Wagner VU at Addington Manor E.C.(sponsored by Meadow Stud) will however be a tough one even for him to surpass. Wagner VU, his latest home-bred colt foal has returned to Scotland as the Best British Foal, (show jumping) 2003 - an accolade that the majority of British breeders can only dream about.

Vesuvius Robert surprisingly enough has been horse-breeding for a relatively short time – only four years. His first mare, which he still has, was an advanced eventer called Dancing Daisy.

Dancing Daisy a thoroughbred mare is now fifteen and her present foal at foot is by the thoroughbred Grade A show jumper Tranquil Bay, (owned by the Aikens in Abderdeenshire). Her first foal however was by Animo and was later to be graded 1st Premium with the Scottish Sports Horse – as have all of Robert’s foals. Last year alone he had six foals all awarded first premiums, and this year’s crop are all on line to follow! (Photo above Vesuvius VU- 2002 Champion SSH Summer Show) Robert joined the S.S.H. in 2001 and became a committee member in 2002 – all his mares and foals are registered with the assocoaition.

The exceptional brood mare and dam of the Addington winner Wagner VU is Jolandy S.S.H. by KWPN Grand Prix show jumper Edison. Her previous two foals consecutively won champion foal at the S.S.H. North of the Border Foal Show (2001, 2002), with last year’s Vesuvius V.U. (sired by Jurius S.S.H.) also winning Champion-in-Hand at the S.S.H. Summer Show 2002. This year Jolandy is in foal again to Jurius – the last of this stallion’s semen.

Wagner VuTo produce this year’s Addington winner ‘Wagner VU’ however, Jolandy was put in foal last spring to Sandra Lyn Cordiner’s (of Howemuir Stud Aberdeenshire) S.S.H. Approved stallion Ludwig H. This talented son of Goodtimes was once summed up in a remark made by K.W.P.N. Judge Gert Van Der Veen to a Scottish breeder: ‘It is crazy to go anywhere to find a stallion when you have one such as this upon your doorstep.’ Ludwig is currently being successfully show jumped by Scottish rider Andrew Hamilton. (Photo above Wagner VU)

Pandora B, another one of the illustrious Donaldson herd of brood-mares, was born in Scotland and produced, among others, the reserve champion at last year’s Scottish Sports Horse Show. This year she is in foal to Sandra Lyn Cordiner’s Pall Mall S.S.H. (Galoubet A) a stallion being show jumped again by Andrew Hamilton.

‘I like to use stallions in Scotland and S.S.H. graded where possible,’ said Robert. And the results are certainly there for all to see if this year’s Addington winner is anything to go by!

Colt FoalIn a class of thirty representing the world’s best/most famous blood lines from Chin Chin to Cruising, Wagner beat into reserve a colt by Cavalier Royale (Cor de la Bryere) and into third a foal by Handel. At the Brightwell’s Auction, Wagner achieved the second highest bid of the whole show (including event and dressage foals) but did not reach his reserve – Robert withdrew him unsold at six thousand seven hundred pounds.

‘I’d quite like to keep him and later get him graded as a S.S.H.stallion,’ said Robert, ‘Although if the right money meanwhile came along, I would consider parting with him.’

So, for us lesser mortals, what should we be doing to achieve similar success?

'‘I look for conformation matches to improve upon the mare and obviously study the stallion and his offspring’s performance,’ said Robert. ‘And my horses are all fed on Bailey’s horse feeds and trained by myself and my friend/stable manageress Elaine Helyer.’

SSH Summer Show, well cloudyAnd, the missing ingredient - a sprinkling of fairy dust perhaps!

Adding to his triumph this year before traveling all the way North to Aberdeen, Robert called in at Balcormo Stud, in Fife to have his champion colt stand again before the judges, this time for Grading. Needless to say KWPN judge M. T. Hoeffs could not find fault with this expressive dark youngster and once again Wagner VU headed the line up showing off his first Premium award - a bright Orange rosette!

As to Robert’s future plans/aspirations?

‘Well, I will certainly return to Addington next year (with my Jurius and Pall Mall foals, all being well) and then I would like to take a foal to show in Holland. I would also like to have a stallion graded.’Well, certainly with Wagner VU, Robert must certainly be well on track - and while Addington may well be a tough win to surpass, we’re sure Robert will do it!

Aileen Stormonth


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