2021 Lifetime Achievement Award – Arabian

Acaciavej Shadowy Prince S24078

Owners and Breeder: Adam & Tracy Nutting

From the moment this colt hit the ground he has had an endearing, delightful, easy temperament. This has made it very easy to campaign him successfully in a variety of disciplines and partake in many other ‘fun’ events.

As a yearling Prince was shown in hand regularly, establishing our ground rules for appropriate colt behavior when out in company. As a 4yo he was lightly shown under saddle in readiness for our main equine pursuit, endurance.

Prince competed in endurance rides (80km plus) from November 2009 until October 2014. In this time Prince was breeding mares, a small amount of showing and the occasional different type of event for fun ie a navigation ride. On all occasions Prince was never concerned by other horses about him, he had his job to do and that’s all that mattered to him. He was never a problem at an endurance ride with many occasions on the endurance track inexperienced riders asking why I was wearing a blue bib and what did it mean! Prince was so well-behaved that people didn’t realise he was a stallion. He never required anything to dull his sense of smell, as some stallions do, and I only ever handled him in a rope halter and for riding, a simple snaffle bit. Many times he helped a horse complete their leg, as they were young and inexperienced and needed a buddy to keep them going. His first 100miler(160km) completion was done by himself for the last 150km! At many rides we rode in a variety of mixed company with absolutely no fuss or bother. Prince would happily lead or follow, fitting in with the other horses around us to make it easy for everybody. Prince acquired many ‘fans’ with his no-fuss attitude at rides and there are now endurance riders proudly stating that they own a Prince ‘baby’.

At the Tas ARAB’s Navigation Ride, he rode along with a mare, leaving her a couple of times to go onto a diversion track to get the tag, coming back to meet up with her again a little further along. Once again out on track when meeting other horses Prince displayed his usual self-confidence in himself and me. There was a job to do, so let’s do it, with minimal fuss and superb manners and we continued with our friend and her mare, to complete the course very well. Once again acquiring admirers for the sensible Arabian stallion.

At a couple of shows he was challenged by another stallion, Prince calmly looked at him as if to say ‘it’s ok buddy, my mares are at home and I am not fussed as to your intentions’.

In 2014 we had a bad accident with me requiring shoulder surgery and Prince sustaining a very bad suspensory ligament tear. This forced us out of endurance but has opened our minds to other disciplines since 2016!

As my favourite riding horse pre-injury and once we had the all clear from the vet, Prince was not going to stay in the paddock as an ornament and breeding stallion only!

We turned our attention to the pursuits that we were allowed to partake in. First of all there was showing under saddle. We got serious about this pursuit, had lessons to improve me as Prince’s rider to help him. We have competed at Arabian Shows, All Breed Shows and in open company at Agricultural shows for 2 years in a variety of classes including hunter, pleasure, bridle path hack, costume as well as the usual age group classes. As always Prince was very polite and well-mannered with all other horses at the ground and in our classes, endearing himself to the other competitors around us.

In this time we also had a look at obstacles in the format of TEXCA(Tasmanian Extreme Cowboy Association) and used a Tas ARAB’s Fun Day to get us started. There were some obstacles that Prince did really easily, surprising me, and others were to take more practice. But once again acquiring admirers of the Arabian breed.

We also participated in a Working Equitation day which we both found very interesting but sadly there were limited opportunities on the North West Coast of Tasmania for clinics allowing stallions.

Tas ARAB’s group were asked to do a demonstration of Arabians in costume at a Horse Expo and Prince and I were asked to be part of this group. It was a great spectacle and Prince performed his part very well. It was a small arena for 8 mares, geldings and Prince to be cantering around together in beautiful costumes. We had many compliments on his behavior as a beautiful, well-mannered stallion from spectators afterwards.

A couple of years ago a friend was buying a new horse for her daughter and wanted me to take them out on some bush trails. Prince was the trusty steed, again, to help out. He is a great fun trail riding buddy, being very settled to help youngsters feel secure with the various challenges that can happen on our bush trails. Over the years I have regularly trail ridden Prince with a variety of people and their equine friends, and escorted group trail rides. Everybody seems to enjoy going out on a trail ride with Prince, complimenting him on his manners and how pleasurable it is to ride along with him.

At the beginning of 2019 I was lucky enough to participate in a Heath Ryan clinic at a private property where there were several other breeds of horses in use in the two-day clinic. Once again Prince ‘charmed’ his way with the various onlookers with his lovely manners and easy trainable temperament.

Also in 2019 I approached the Northern Adult Riding Club about being a member and being able to use Prince as my ride, as stallions are normally not allowed. However, due to Prince’s ‘reputation’ as a very solid, dependable, well-mannered stallion our membership was granted. He is now one of only two stallions who have been allowed to take part in the activities of this particular club.

Towards the end of 2019 we tried dressage, starting at the absolute lowest level as I was concerned that I wouldn’t remember the tests! We enjoyed this so much that we are looking to compete in more and to work up to the next level of testing. Once again people complimented Prince on his work ethic and trainability with some lovely compliments from the judges. The judge in our first test, at an agricultural show, commended us and said that he was the ideal of an all-round Arabian, doing all that was asked of him.

This year, 2020, our new challenge has been to have a go at reining. We both quite enjoyed the clinics that we attended. We did well enough at the clinics that we were strongly encouraged to try the Training Show in October. In this show we had a go at Ranch Riding class as well as a couple of Reining classes. We hope to pursue this equine pastime a little further early in 2021. Once again Prince endeared himself to the other competitors and onlookers, in an environment based on the quarter horse breed.

Who knows what we shall try next, but I do know that, as always, Prince will put his best hoof forward. Showing the general equine community, and anybody else observing, that Arabians are a wonderful, beautiful, trainable, versatile breed.