Every year, we look forward to Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show with great enthusiasm and anticipation. While there were some shows in the Middle East and in parts of the southern hemisphere being held, in the United States, the Scottsdale show marks the beginning of the show season. With many of the shows canceled last year, due to the pandemic, this year, people were more excited than ever to gather and celebrate our beloved Arabian horses. Extraordinary measures were taken by the organizers to assure everyone’s safety and to comply with the strict health regulations. However, even the strong precautions did not diminish the thrill of competition, the jubilation of victories, the pride of breeders and owners, or the beauty and talent of the horses.
Perhaps the number one reason the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show has earned the name, “The Greatest Horse Show On Earth”, is that it truly offers something fun for everyone. There are a wide variety of halter and performance classes offered for youth and amateur competitors, as well as classes in virtually every equestrian discipline for professionals, ranging from reining, cutting, and working ranch horses, to dressage, jumping, western, English, and more. This year marked the show’s 66th Anniversary!
Everyone was just happy to be able to attend the show and participate – more or less – as usual. Although there were fewer than normal commercial vendors, the number of horses entered was only slightly less than in past years. One interesting change was the venue for the International Halter and Breeding classes, which were moved to the evening session. Also, they were held outdoors at the Wendell area, which allowed for social distancing and a much larger arena for the horses to show their movement.
Each year, the competition has a unique energy. Even with the travel restrictions, there was still a huge international influence in the Halter and Breeding classes. Marwan Al Shaqab continued his dominance by siring four of the top champions including both the Champion and Reserve Champion Senior Stallions, Soul Of Marwan AS, and Rhan Al Shahania. Emerald J sired three of the top champions, while RFI Farid and Sultan GK each sired two of the top champions. Once again, Brazilian and South American breeders were at the forefront with their spectacular horses, and breeders from the Middle East also took numerous top honors.
Still, the American dream lives on through the efforts of the “grassroots” breeders, the small breeders in the United States, who pour their hearts and souls into their breeding programs and who produced some of the most stunning and talented horses of the show. Small breeders, although often overshadowed by others, remain the lifeblood of the Arabian breed in America. Congratulations to all the champions and to those who followed their dreams all the way to The Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show – The Greatest Horse Show On Earth!
The dates for next year’s show are already set: February 17-27, 2022. We invite you to make plans now to join us. For additional information please visit our website at: www.scottsdaleshow.com
by Beth Ellen Hunziker