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  1. #1
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    Default Totilas not to stand at stud in 2013

    Very interesting decision from Schockemohle not to have Totilas stand at stud in 2013. The turning point?

    http://www.eurodressage.com/equestri...tand-stud-2013
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  2. #2
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    Let me first qualify my comment: I am not a breeder and certainly only a duffer at dressage. But can someone please tell me what else this horse has left to prove? If he were a race horse of equivalent accomplishment, wouldn't he have been retired to stud long ago? Such thoughts lead me to believe that it's the egos of the humans getting in the way here, not some cool calculation of what is the most profitable use of the horse.

    He's hardly neglected, I'm not a PETA person, but for the love of all things horsey, take him out of competition, let him breed to his heart's content, and find a super up and coming horse for Herr Rath. Poor Toto!


    4 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
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    I'm sure they have made sure there is lots of frozen semen available for 2013.
    Visit Sonesta Farms website at www.sonestafarms.com or our FaceBook page at www.facebook.com/sonestafarms. Also showing & breeding Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.


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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldernewbie View Post
    Let me first qualify my comment: I am not a breeder and certainly only a duffer at dressage. But can someone please tell me what else this horse has left to prove?
    That his success comes as much from his own, potentially inheritable qualities as Edward Gal's?

    Rumors that Toto's offspring tend to favor their mothers probably haven't helped much in that regard, and are complicated a bit by Toto himself having been late to develop the gaits that have made him famous-- gaits which seem to have fallen apart a bit under Rath. I think the whole enterprise likely to be highly educational for the dressage world-- especially with the British upsurge in the mix!
    Last edited by fish; Nov. 21, 2012 at 08:47 AM.



  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldernewbie View Post
    If he were a race horse of equivalent accomplishment, wouldn't he have been retired to stud long ago?
    Yes, a racehorse of equivalent accomplishment would probably be retired by now, but a 12 year old warmblood competing in the international dressage world is extremely common. Your average thoroughbred race horse has been backed as a yearling, lightly raced as a 2 year old, and hits their (racing) prime somewhere beween 3 and 6 assuming they stay sound. Then they retire to stud or to other careers.

    Compare that to your average warmblood, who is probably not backed until 3 and isn't heavily competed until 5 or 6 depending on the discipline, and its not uncommon to see warmbloods in their teens competing and winning in dressage and show jumping. Anky Van Grunsven and Bonfire won Gold in dressage at the 2000 Olympics. Bonfire was 17 at the time. She won individual gold on Salinero in 2004 (age 10) and 2008 (age 14) and competed on him in London as well (18), getting 6th in individual dressage. Ian Millar was competing on Big Ben (show jumping) when Ben was 16. Those are just some that I can think of off the top of my head.

    I'm not a fan of the way Totilas has been ridden by Rath, but as long as the horse is sound and happy I see no problem continuing to compete.
    It is only through labor and painful effort, by grim energy and resolute courage, that we move on to better things.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by fish View Post
    That his success comes as much from his own, potentially inheritable qualities as Edward Gal's?
    Could you elaborate on this please (not being snarky here BTW)? Do you mean that he is a made horse rather than being naturally talented and that it may not get passed along?



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldernewbie View Post
    Could you elaborate on this please (not being snarky here BTW)? Do you mean that he is a made horse rather than being naturally talented and that it may not get passed along?
    I hope that's not what she meant. The horse obviously has talent AND rideability. Dressage is not all about "big" gaits, although as you can see for yourself in the video below Totilas is a naturally big mover.

    Vid of Totilas as a 5-year-old: http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=QbpiL...%3DQbpiL2arT4A



  8. #8
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    What makes Totilas so special isn't his big trot. There are a lot of horses around with huge trots.

    Its the fact that he has great gaits with a huge knee action and freedom of shoulder... and at the same time can collect and have those amazing piaffe and passage. Now, thats rare!

    But thats not even what matters the most. Totilas is an amazing horse, who was lucky enough to be ridden by Edward Gal, who most of us agrees has made him the star that he is. But what has he be shown to pass on? Average movement of the foal and correct but far from stellar conformation. The mare seems to be the one stamping the foals, and Totilas only really stands out as far as temperament goes. And 8000€ for temperament is a bit too much.

    When he was first put at stud, every single breeder with money went on for him. But now he has foals on the ground and people are starting to see maybe he's not that worth it.

    Well, the word on the street is he was bought for 16 000 000€. Even if Schockemohle only paid half, its still 8 000 000€. Totilas probably hasn't paid for himself yet, and we all know Schockemohle is a business man. So I consider this a business decision more than anything else - "lets allow Rath to work the horse, have him functioning again, and increase the mare owners interest once again".



  9. #9
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    Again, an honest question. How old are Totilas' oldest offspring? Is it fair to say that it's hard to tell at this point whether he throws nice but not spectacular foals that can be made into spectacular upper level horses by good training? I mean, if he threw foals like himself, would that be such a bad thing? It seems to me, from perusing this forum, that it's not uncommon to have stallions that produce great young horse competitors who never make it to the upper levels. Is it too early to tell exactly what he throws, performance wise?

    If I were a serious performance horse breeder, I wouldn't be worried about his performance record - that's a given. I want to see what his foals will do. So showing him more isn't going to increase my interest. But that's just me....



  10. #10
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    I believe Toto has proven, without a doubt, that he is a talented horse that deserves a chance to breed some nice mares. His pedigree seconds that statement. However, the issue is what his stud fee was set at. It was set above that of most proven stallions, so if they want to charge "those" prices they have to bring the hype, the fanfare with it. And it would be hard to back down on that price at this point. (BTW, I would bet anything that the really nice mares got a big discount).
    But there is something to prove by the new owners and the rider, they bought a legend but did not do him justice. I think "they" have more to prove.



  11. #11
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    Maybe PS inc have finally just come to their senses that He can not be both a breeding machine and the best dressage horse in the world at the same time.

    I think you have to pick a horse in top competition shape or a busy breeding stallion.
    "I would not beleive her if her tongue came notorized"



  12. #12
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    PS is a selfmademan and he would not be if he would not know how the make the best of things.
    For me it is rather astonishing to take the horse out of business meaning having no income from it, from breeding business. Either Mrs. Stepmother paid even more to have him solely for riding or I dunno. Maybe they offer him frozen for conditions as of fresh to breeders, but economically this is a rather strange decision looking from the outside.
    I am not responsible for spelling misstacks - just my PC
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  13. #13
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    Default Totilas

    A well known warmblood breeder and rider, who I forget his name, has said in numerous articles that GP dressage horses are made, not born. Whether the offspring of Totilas will become GP level, we won't know for a while. Just because you can afford to breed to Totilas, doesn't mean you are breeding the right type of mare for him. You would assume the people breeding to him are breeding their best mares, but are they the best mares for him? We won't know for a while. The cool reception towards stallions happens all the time in the thoroughbred world. After a couple of years before the first babies are running, the stude fees drop (usually). If the babies start to perform, then up the fees go. Storm Cat started at $40,000, dropped to $ 20,000 after a couple of years before shooting up to $ 500,000. Give the offspring a chance to perform before we judge what type of stallion he is.


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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by fish View Post
    That his success comes as much from his own, potentially inheritable qualities as Edward Gal's?

    Rumors that Toto's offspring tend to favor their mothers probably haven't helped much in that regard, and are complicated a bit by Toto himself having been late to develop the gaits that have made him famous-- gaits which seem to have fallen apart a bit confused under Rath. I think the whole enterprise likely to be highly educational for the dressage world-- especially with the British upsurge in the mix!
    Regarding the British competitors, and the other German team members, their horses all go with more correct and balanced gaits than Toto does/did, and it seems the judges are starting to reward lightness, suppleness and correct gaits more now, not just the powerful, robotic movement that seemed to be more in vogue 2 or 3 years ago.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  15. #15
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    [QUOTE from rodawn]Not having him collected for fresh just means it saves his hindquarters and the horse will probably have much greater focus and composure...There are a great many stallions who have difficulty focusing while performing as an active breeding stallion.
    [QUOTE from Lynnwood] Maybe PS inc have finally just come to their senses that He can not be both a breeding machine and the best dressage horse in the world at the same time.
    Bingo. I have been saying for the past year the horse obviously cannot be a top riding/competition mount and a busy breeding stallion at the same time.

    Add into the equation that MR is now training with Sjef Janssen, and SJ has never had much tolerance for breeding stallions in his training program.

    Now PS and AK have reached an agreement for Totilas to be used exclusively for riding/training/competing , and see how he does when he is not taxed physically and mentally by breeding. If he is successful, everyone wins - yes, PS loses breeding fees for 2013, but the horse's reputation as a top dressage mount is embellished, which will help secure breedings in the future. If Totilas bombs in the show ring, he will come back to PS to take up his breeding duties again. We can only wait and see if their strategy works.

    As for his worth as a breeding stallion - he is royally bred, and has very desirable qualities hard to find in other horses.

    [QUOTE from SCMSL] Its the fact that he has great gaits with a huge knee action and freedom of shoulder... and at the same time can collect and have those amazing piaffe and passage. Now, thats rare!..."
    And while he hasn't shown himself to be a star "foal maker" - i.e., fancy, flashy, big trotting, elegant offspring (and preferably all dark-coated) - perhaps his true worth as a breeding stallion will be revealed once his offspring go under saddle and start showing if they are true upper level prospects. Remember how many years it takes to make a GP horse - we are still a decade away from being able to truly assess Totilas' ability to sire GP horses.


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  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by oldernewbie View Post
    Could you elaborate on this please (not being snarky here BTW)? Do you mean that he is a made horse rather than being naturally talented and that it may not get passed along?
    First, I'd like to say that despite a thumbs down for my post (would really like to see those thumbs and notifications go!!), I am pleased by the directions this discussion has taken. To elaborate a little on what I wrote, I would like to refer to something George Williams said years ago--- "if I want to know how well I rode, I look at the score for gaits." A great deal has been made of Totilas' gaits, which have become less competitive under Rath, not to mention the rise of horses (with a whole lot less knee action!!) ridden by the Brits and other Germans to challenge and beat Totilas' record scores. When PS bought Totilas, he seemed almost invincible. That's now far from the case, which does give Totilas (and Rath and PS) a bit more to "prove" than seemed to be a case a couple years ago.

    Personally, I've never been a fan of extravagant knee action, though I did appreciate Totilas' relaxation, balance, obedience, etc., etc., etc., under Gal. I'm very, very glad to see dressage returning to an evaluation of qualities such as these rather than particular movement styles so that flatter kneed horses (e.g. Uthopia) are receiving as much recognition for the beauty of their gaits as those with extreme upward action and flexion. In dressage, as in other arts, "expression" can and should be allowed to take many different forms, with varieties of style enriching the discipline as a whole.

    And yes, rideability does seem to be inheritable. If Totilas can continue to demonstrate his-- and pass it on to his offspring-- he will prove himself a valuable
    stallion whether his foals show extravagant knee action or not.


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  17. #17
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    He is part Trak and even at that level, Traks are not for everyone. Super smart and will go above and beyond for the right person but they have their own minds. It is a different type of ridability. I have seen my mare be so kind and patient with some people and will have nothing to do with others, she definitely has her biases. They have always had the double edge sword attributes.


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  18. #18
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    Flip flop! Now PS says Totilas will stand for several months before competition season gets in full swing.

    http://www.eurodressage.com/equestri...tand-stud-2013



  19. #19
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    A well known warmblood breeder and rider, who I forget his name, has said in numerous articles that GP dressage horses are made, not born.


    This is such BS. When the next gold medal winning team is riding $1500.00 Quarter Horses then I will believe this sentiment. Of course any talented sport horse has to be trained and of course the trainer has a huge influence on the horse. But if GP horses were truly "made" and not "born" then all of these world class riders would simply pick a cheapy horse of whatever breeding out of the field and have at it. And if that were the case then why even breed "dressage horses" if there is really no such thing??

    A gifted GP rider friend of mine always says "we train talent" and I think that sums it up a lot better.
    www.svhanoverians.com

    "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.


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  20. #20
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    Well, problem solved, it seems PS decided (or at least reviewed his decision) Totilas will stand at stud after all.

    http://www.eurodressage.com/equestri...tand-stud-2013



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