It appears that there is some resistance and/or confusion in regard to the inclusion of the API horses at some of our Affiliate shows. The recent changes regarding API has not changed anything in regard to Affiliate Shows. API horses have always been permitted to exhibit in Youth Classes and MUST not be discriminated against. It is up to the individual show organiser whether they are included with the derivatives or they hold separate classes. However, if separate classes are offered they must be equal to those offered to other Youths.
It is no secret that the Arabian industry does not have the membership that it had a decade ago and that numbers at shows are dwindling. There are many reasons behind this and everyone has a different opinion. However, to keep doing the same thing and expect a different outcome is destined for failure. We need new people into our industry and the Board feels that the inclusion of API may well be the vehicle we need to do this. By bringing in these new people, making them feel welcome and inclusive as well as exposing them to the qualities of this Breed we feel will have a two-fold effect.
Firstly, it recognises those people who are willing to acknowledge that their horse has been influenced by the Arabian. This is something, that over the years, was kept a secret. This in turn has a financial benefit to the Society and eventually there will be a financial benefit for the Affiliates, with a broader group of people supporting their events.
Secondly, we believe, some of the barriers that are around the Arabian horse will be broken and people will embrace Arabian bred horses. This is particularly relevant to our Youth events and we already have positive evidence of this.
This initiative needs to be embraced by us all and we understand will need to grow to realise the viability. The API is growing faster than any of the derivative registries at the present time.
Yes, members voted for derivatives to be of a higher percentage. This was all very well and admirable at the time, however, we do not believe the long term effects were clear. Realistically, we feel that this was not a viable decision for the future of the breed.
We thank the Affiliates who are embracing this initiative and working with us.
We are always open to ideas and suggestions on realistic ways to engage with new people and welcome any person or group to write to the Board.