The Fable Horse Eukaliptus
March 16th, 2009
The incredible story of Eukaliptus - the sire of monumental impact to world's breeding is the story of some unusual horses as well as exceptional people whose destinies were pleached in some weird and starling ways. This story tracks back to the romantic and gorgious times of Polish aristocracy runninng the prosperous studs with huge herds of oriental horses located at the Eastern borders of Europe in the XIX century. One of them was Antoniny stud in the Volhynia region, 140.000 acres farm with 104 Pure bred horses inherrited by Princess Maria Sanguszko after her father - Prince Roman, owner of one of the very first Polish Pure bred herds in the history. When Princess Maria died she bequeathed the stud to her youngest son - Count Jozef Potocki, the proprietor of the very refined taste not only for making Antoniny one the most elegant manors in Europe but also for breeding the most refined Arabian horses. Count Potocki has imported several of them to improve his breeding stock, including the stallions from Crabbet Park stud in England, from Calcuta, India or from the Middle Eastern desert but none of them was a true sire of quality for Antoniny. The historical moment came in 1907 with Count Potocki's trip to Odessa and the purchase of desert-bred Ibrahim born 1899 at Sh. Obduraham Abdullah in Hedjar, Damascus area. Snowy grey stallion was described by the farm manager Stanislaw Wotowski as „coming from the Hadiaz offshoot, small, possesing a lot of type and characterized by a beautiful head, neck, well-rounded ribs (...) and very fluid in motion". This description was to be up-to-date after ages...
There were three stallions in the barns of Antoniny at that time - including desert-bred Massaoud and homebred Ricordo but Ibrahim was producing the most significant get. The end of the story of this stallion of great value came with the Bolschevics revolution - the family as well as their wonderful herd of pure bred horses including Ibrahim were brutally murdered - as the beautiful symbols of nobless and freedom but the impact of the stallion survived and went beyond Poland to the Soviet Union, Nothern America, Brazil and Mexico in the veins of Ibrahim's get, safekept from the tragedy. One of his best daughters at Antoniny was Kalina foaled 1909, the granddam of Janow Podlaski-bred Piolun (1934) that went to Russian Tersk stud and from there established one of the most known sire lines of Padron who was great grandson of Piolun. Padron is now reigning the world's arena mostly through his significant son - Padrons Psyche and his generations next. It's interesting that Padrons Psyche's pedigree tracks back to Ibrahim three times also through his dam Kilika - two times descendant of Piolun and once of Skowronek - known as the most prominent horse bred by Antoniny stud.
Skowronek, foaled in 1909 by Ibrahim out of Jaskolka, was described as "small in stature, harmoniously built with fine, expressive head and swanlike neck". In 1913 he was, with the group of other Antoniny stallions, to be presented at large show in Kiev but for unknown reasons they never appeared there and soon Skowronek himself was sold in some unusual circumstances... The description of this event survived in the account written by eyewitness - Roman Potocki, son of Count Jozef. In the nothern part of Potockis' estate Count Jozef had a zoological garden, more than 15.000 acres where Polish bison were especially plentiful. At those times, an old bull had been making troubles killing the youngsters so in the spring of 1913 the manager suggested to shot the old one. Meanwhile, Count Jozef wrote a letter to his friend Carl Hagenberg of Hamburg, Germany and received an urgent telegram back reading: „Don't kill the bison, news under way". The message arrived saiyng that Walter Winans - American millionaire living in England was offering 15.000 rubles in gold for shooting the bull himself. The proposal was accepted and Winans arrived escorted by sharpshooter, secretary, reporter and film opertator. During his stay he particularly enjoyed four grey geldings harnessed to his cart being under the care of well known driver Wincenty Grzybowski. After spending the nice time during par-force hares Winans set his mind on purchasing all the four horses. The more complicated was that he wanted to take the cart, harness and the driver with him to England as well! A bit confused after unsuccessfull transaction they took Winans to the stallions barn with the group of young horses waiting for the Russian Army as the replace horses. Winans stood in front of Skowronek's stall and asked if the colt was for sale. When the answer was „yes" he said „I'll take it" - without even leading the horse from the stall. Returned to England Winans sold Skowronek for big amount of money and the stallion was changing the ownership twice until he went to Lady Judith Wentworth of Crabbet Park Stud runned by her well respected Arabian horse breeders family. Skowronek was bred to the highest quality mares in Crabbet and took the leading place amongst the Arabian sires in England, being described as the most perfect horse ever to be imported into the country. His offspring were primarily grey in colour with excellent type, good bone and well defined. In the English Arabian Horse Studbook in 1922, sixteen of his foals were listed as champions in comparison to the other sires with maximum of nine foals being such successive! Skowronek was pure representtive of Saklavi type passing on his genetic power deeply through his sons and daughters producing their get all over the world. One of them was grey Naseem, sold with the group of mares to the Tersk Stud in Russia.
In 1945 Polish-bred mare Taraszcza, captured and taken to Tersk from Janow Podlaski stud in dramatic circumstances of World War II, gave birth to grey colt Negatiw sired by Naseem. Again, snowy white Negatiw was a truly descendant of Ibrahim and Skowronek - stallion of distinctive beauty, correctness and dryness. It was the time when the directors of Polish State Studs were carefully watching the successes of Skowronek's progeny abroad, looking forward to get Ibrahim line back to Poland. The chances appeared after 50 years of the absence, with Negatiw's son - Nabor leased to Michalow State Stud where he left the group of 23 excellent daughters and 15 sons. Two of them: Dardir and Espartero became famous chief sires later on. After few years passed the inspectors of Russian state breeding agreed to the Polish proposal of the purchase of Negatiw himself. For the first season Negatiw went to Janow Podlaski Stud where his most significant son ever was foaled in 1964. It was grey Bandos out of legendary Bandola - for her beauty and quality of offspring known as the „Queen of Janow Podlaski". Bandos was her best produce, used at all three existing Polish State Studs for 14 years siring both race and show champions with: Oaks winner - Nawa, Derby winner - Kabaret, Triplecrowned Oaks, Derby and Criterium stakes - Arra who went also to be Polish National and European Champion in halter, Winda - Polish National Champion Mare, Enklawa - Polish National and European Champion Mare, Polish National Champion Stallions - Enos and Pepton (sire of another National Champion - Ecaho, sold to the US later on) or Europa - named Polish National Champion Mare and one of the best producing broodmares of Janow Podlaski. In the age of 18 Bandos has beaten another record being sold for the price of $806.000 to the US where he kept continuing his breeding career.
Bandos was the sire of five full siblings at Janow Podlaski stud. Their dam was one of the best producing mares at the farm - bay, beautifull and refined Eunice by Comet. One of the results of this cross was Europa mentioned above and her one year elder brother Eukaliptus, born in February 1974. Despite the strong influence of Kuhailan type of his dam soon Eukaliptus was chosen as the future continuator of Ibrahim sire line. Indeed, he was representing and passing all the features described at his legendary Saklavi type ancestors - so the grey colour, long, swan neck, big, dark eyes, outstanding movements and charisma of the royal line descendant. After presenting his good disposition during two seasons spent on the racectrack in Warsaw, Poland (with 13 starts, 2 winnings, 1 second, 4 third and 1 fourth places) Eukaliptus was approved by the inspection committee and qualified to be a chief sire in Polish State Studs in the autumn of 1978. It was the year when the two great figures met each other to turn not only Polish but also the world's breeding upside down - Eukaliptus was chosen as a chief sire by Michalow State Stud director - Ignacy Jaworowski, breeding genius who saw the genetical power of Skowronek, combined with the splendid and elegance of Eunice and Bandola in this young sire that seemed to fit the Saklavi type herd of Michalow Stud perfectly.
In the first season only 15 mares were covered by the young Eukaliptus who, in the meantime, went to achieve the title of the first Polish National Champion Stallion in 1979. It was his only appearance at the showring but this stallion made his biggest show achievements... standing in the barn of Michalow State Stud being the unbeaten sire of champions. Soon, he didn't need to attend the shows - he made the spectators attending his stall just to have a glimpse on the incredible sire - the future legend. Only his first crop of foals brought World Reserve Champion Mare - Passa and Emfaza - second in the yearling fillies class at Polish Nationals. Both mares gained the gold medals of All Nations Cup in Stockholm. There was also the most entitled Eukaliptus' son so far born in his 1980 get - Edykt, twice Salon du Cheval Champion Stallion, twice World Reserve Champion and European Reserve Champion Stallion. Eukaliptus didn't have too much time to prove himself as a sire at Michalow when he was discovered and leased by one of the most important Arabian horse studs in the US those times - Lasma Arabians. During the four years lease Eukaliptus greatly enriched North American breeding with his elegant and refined presence combined with correct conformation and performance abilities siring the broodmares that produce both halter and performance champions when crossed with US-bred stallions of various types and bloodlines. Amongst Eukaliptus' winning get born in the United States was National Champion Western Pleasure - MH Poet, National Champion Hunter Pleasure - Duet VF, Reining Junior Champion at Scottsdale - Marajj and Acquaintance (out of Bask-daughter Acquanette) - dam of S Justadream, known as the most entitled halter champion mare ever, 15 times winner at US Nationals, Regionals and at Scottsdale show. It's interesting that Eukaliptus' blood is now being spread back in the US but also in Europe including Poland through S Justadream's son, US-bred young stallion Justify that is one of three full siblings out of S Justadream sired by Magnum Psyche but the only male get of this couple.
In 1984 Eukaliptus was back to his homeland and again, on request of talented breeder Ignacy Jaworowski, placed at Michalow Stud barns where he spent another four years - years that made Eukaliptus known as the one of most significant stallions for Polish breeding program ever. Director Jaworowski with great help of Eukaliptus found the key for Michalow Stud's everlasting success - the golden cross with the daughters of Palas - Aswan' son bred in Tersk Stud and purchased to Poland in 1973. One of these daughters - Emigracja beacame the mile stone for the dynasty of champions. The first product of this couple was Emigrantka foaled 1985 that gained the title of Junior Reserve Champion Mare of Poland and Europe and went back to the showring in the age of six to complete her titles collection with European Champion Mare and Polish National Senior Champion one year later. The next one to go was her one year younger full sister Emanacja - named Polish National and European Junior Champion Mare as well as World Reserve at the very beginning, then Polish National Reserve Senior Champion Mare, All Nations Cup Champion Mare and Polish National Senior Champion Mare in the end. Both Emigrantka and Emanacja established the next generation of national and international champions, with European and Polish National Champion Stallion, World Top Ten - Emigrant (sold to Valley Oak Arabians, US this year in the age of 17), twice European and Polish National Champion Mare, World Reserve Champion and All Nations Cup Champion Mare - El Dorada (both out of Emigrantka), Polish National Champion and twice Reserve - Emilda, entitled also as European Champion Mare, All Nations Cup Reserve and British National Champion Mare, Emanda - World and European Champion, Polish National and All Nations Cup Reserve Champion Mare, Emanor - Polish, Canadian and US National Champion Stallion, Champion at Scottsdale show in halter and champion in Park Horse and English Pleasure in Canada and US (all three out of Emanacja). 1985 crop of Eukaliptus' foals brought also the incredible mover Esklawa - that gained the title of 1994 European Champion Mare, 1995 Polish National Champion Mare, twice Scandinavian Open International Champion Mare, Top Ten World Championships and International Championships in Ajman in the age of 19. She was also the dam od Polish National Champion Stallion Erbil. In 1985 and 1986 the full siblings by Eukaliptus out of El Paso-daughter Gildia were born. Both of them finally went to the US where the elder one - Goliat is a chief sire at Marsha's Parkinson Canterbury Farm and his younger sister Gloria after producing few generations in Poland (including one of very few Arabian twins ever raised) was sold to the family Reed of Toshkara Arabians where she produced the generations of reining champions before her unexpected death this year. Another Michalow-bred multichampion producer sired by Eukaliptus came in 1988 - it was Grenlandia, again out of Palas daughter - Getynga. Grenlandia became 1996 Polish National Champion Mare and amongst of her several international champion titles was the Reserve at Masters Open, Bordeux in the age of 17 when she was competing for her new owners - Maxwell family from Great Britain. All of these Michałów-bred mares are the unbeaten producers of next generations of champions, unbelievably even and high quality in type.
In 1987 it was decided that Eukaliptus should share his incredible prepotency with other Polish state studs. He was moved to Kurozweki where - as a continuation of genius idea began at Michalow, Eukaliptus covered the large group of Palas and El Paso daughters. Indeed, one of the most important broodmares sired at that time were full sisters out of Palas-daughter - Heraldyka: Hulanka (Scandinavian Open Reserve Champion) and Heroldia, class winner at Polish Nationals. The good combination of Eukaliptus went also with Banat-daughters - with Nejtyczanka at the top, who was the dam of first Eukaliptus son to be used as a chief sire. Chestnut Nimb left four crops of foals in Poland and was sold to Great Britain where became the champion under the saddle. The performance abilities of this cross came later on also with the success of first European Champion in Arabian Showjumping title gained for Poland twice in a row by private bred and owned Niniwa - daughter of Niwa, full sister to Nimb and with the only Eukaliptus daughter to win Polish Oaks - Atencja from 1991 crop at Kurozweki.
As it was not far away from Kurozweki to Michalow stud, director Jaworowski didn't waste the time to repeat his breeding success with mating his E-line mares to Eukaliptus. The best Michalow mares went to Kurozweki in 1989 and again in 1990 delivering the proofs of director Jaworowski 's genious idea. Another daughter of Eukaliptus and Emigracja was born in 1990: Erlanda, Polish National Reserve Champion Mare, international champion of Babolna show and class winner of Europen Championships. Unfortuntely, before her unexpected death she gave birth to one daughter only - but what a daughter! Elandra, sired by another stallion of merit for Polish breeding - Monogramm (US) went to be World Top Ten mare and after her spectacular sale in 2005 for the record price of $290.000 she gained the title of US National Reserve Champion Mare and Champion at Scottsdale.
In 1991 Eukaliptus found his way to Michalow Stud again. In consequence, a year later the excellent Palas granddaughter was born - Larissa, Polish National Reserve Junior Champion Mare and fifth Eukaliptus' daughter born in Michalow to become Polish National Senior Champion. 1992 was also the year of birth for Erlan Cup Champion Mare and highest selling horse of 2001 Pride of Poland sale - Egna and Ekspozycja, dam of Esparto - twice Polish National Reserve Champion, Reserve Champion of All Nations Cup, Top Ten World Stallion and several titles winner while on lease to Ajman Stud. The year of 1992 was also a special one for Eukaliptus maternal stud - finally, after 12 years of his breeding career Janow Podlaski kept the 17 years old stallion for itself - for three breeding seasons. The first crop of his Janow-bred foals brought the very special horse, the next son to be used as a chief sire in Poland and abroad - Polish National Champion Stallion Harbin. It's not surprising that his dam was Palas' daughter - Halfa... Harbin was the true epitome the ideal of Polish bred Arabian - combining beauty with braveness, he was also the excellent proof of exceptional performance abilities of Eukaliptus' progeny - during his two racing seasons spent at Warsaw racetrack Harbin was placed 17 times in money out of his 18 starts, winning five including two important stakes and placed second in four another, beaten only by racing phenomenon - Druid, named the best in 75 years of history of Polish races for Pure bred horses. With valuable representative of famous P-damline of Janow Podlaski - Pestka (by Probat) Eukaliptus sired one of his best daughters in Poland - dapple grey Pepesza, dam of two young stallions included into Polish breeding program already - Perseusz (by Laheeb) and Pegasus (by Gazal Al Shaqab). In the 1995 crop, the last one for Janow Podlaski in this three years period the East Budleigh show Champion Stallion was born - Ekwipunek, that gained this title purchased by the world known authority and Polish Arabian horse lover Patricia Lindsay for her Holmes Farm in UK.
But Eukaliptus seemed to be as noble as the finest wine - his best sons were sired during the last six years of his life. Eukaliptus was already 21 when he came back once again - and for the last time to Michalow Stud. Year before, in 1994 the great creator of Michalow's successes in the world was awarded with the Breeding Oscar - the Trophy granted by Arabian Horse Trust of America for the outstanding breeding achievements - horses bred by director Ignacy Jaworowski gained the titles of US National Champions five times and Reserve five times as well by the year of 1994. Michalow was the place where the horses of great genetic potential met the genius of horse breeding art. One of these horses was Eukaliptus without a doubt. With the knowledge of the breeder, the strength of the stallions pedigree and a bit of good luck they changed Polish breeding and its influence to the world forever.
After gaining the spectacular successes with Michalow' mares in the past Eukaliptus once again proven himself while crossed with the younger generation. In the group of new born fillies were Panika - the future dam of Palanga, twice Polish National Reserve Champion Mare, Reserve Champion of Europe, All Nations Cup, World Top Ten and European Champion Mare. Also well proven cross with incomparable Emigracja produced another valuable full sister to Emigrantka, Emanacja and Erlanda - it was Egeria, who joined her paternal halfsiblings - Goliat and Gloria becoming the best broodmare at Marsha's Parkinson Canterbury Farm across the Ocean. As a kind of thanksgiving for the trust in his big potential during his last stay at Michalow barns Eukaliptus left his three sons. All of them born in 1996 and all became champions and chief sires in Poland and abroad: Polish National Reserve and Region VII Champion Esperanto exported to the US, Reserve Champion Emerald Trophy - Werter purchased by Jadem Arabians, Belgium and another one, proven at the farm of Christine Jamar, the one that still hasn't said his final word: Grafik - four times Polish National Reserve Champion, Reserve Champion of Europe and Top Ten World Championships, still progressing as a show horse and as a sire of champions - as young, private bred and owned by Belzyce Arabians in Poland Garuna - class winner at prestigious ECAHO A-show in Wels and Junior Champion Mare at St. Petersburg Open. At last but not least - Eukaliptus came back to his maternal stud of Janow Podlaski in 1997 - this time for ever, making an obeisance to his breeders with the last four crops of foals born untill the 2001. With the first one - in 1998 Polish National Reserve Junior Champion Stallion and chief sire - Aslan arrived accompanied with another descendant of Janow's P-damline of champions - Polish National Reserve Champion Mare Pianosa, that wrote the name of Janow Podlaski with golden letters in the history of world's breeding as a dam of probably the most beautiful Arabian horse born at the stud ever and the one most talked about starting with 2004 througout the world - Triplecrowned Pianissima (by Gazal Al Shaqab), Polish National, All Nations Cup, European and World Champion Mare, the US National and Scottsdale Champion Mare that comes back in the ring with the next spectacular successes as a senior while her full sister - Passionaria is one of the most promissing young fillies at stud. Another crop of 1999 brought the beautiful daughters and valuable future broodmares - Altona and Psyche - dam of Polish National Reserve Junior Champion Stallion - Porto (by Gazal Al Shaqab). In 2000 the full sibling to Aslan - Alwaro was born. Although not so successful as his elder brother he was admired as a sire of some foal crops in Polish private breeding. Their relative was beautiful Junior Champion Mare and Best in Show at Bialka Spring Show - Amra (Eukaliptus - Albigowa). The millenium year of 2000 was a birthdate of another brave Janow-bred racers sired by Eukaliptus - Derby winner Padus and Calderon - the winner of Produce.
Eukaliptus sired 188 foals during 18 years of holding the title of chief sire in Polish breeding and the large number of those born while on lease to the US. Moreover, several Eukaliptus daughters and sons influences the worlds breeding being sold abroad during the sale held at Eukaliptus maternal Janow Podlaski stud annually. As the breeders around the world highly esteem the value of Eukaliptus offsprings, many of them went to be the highest selling horses - as Emfaza sold in 1991 for $90.000 or Eleuza the highest selling horse of 1996 sale for $71.000. According to the tradition, each sale held at Janow Podlaski is accompanied by the studs breeding parade. And no one could ever imagine this event without an exceptional line of Eukaliptus daughters to be presented followed proudly by their sire wearing woolen Arabian halter, leaded by the chief groom of Janow Podlaski. In the evening of 9th August 2001, again 18 beautiful Eukaliptus' daughters with foals at side and two of his sons - Harbin and Ekwipunek appeared on the arena from the dark. But this time, at the end, in the overwhelming silence the groom came out - with empty woolen halter in his hand... - Nearly three weeks earlier the stallion of one of the greatest impacts to the world's breeding passed away. Two days after the parade one of his most beautiful daughters - Egna was the highest selling horse of the annual 2001 sale...
Eukaliptus was especially admired for the quality and some features of Arabian horse that he was certainly and very deeply passing on his get - so the refined and exotic type, swan neck, large eye, excellent movement, stamina and mostly grey colour. All these features survived the history drifts from the very beginning at Antoniny stud and can still be found in the next generations. Eukaliptus himself was a class-conscious stallion to the manner born king of world's breeding - and an Arabian of outstanding charisma with the crowds making their first steps while at Janow Podlaski Stud to the historical Stallions Barn with the box of this historical figure. Marga Sanderse, the Dutch breeder was one of those impressed by his charisma at the first sight: "The first time I met Eukaliptus was in the evening at Janow, the stables were so quiet and there he stood looking at me with this sensitive look. It will be in my mind forever" - she recalls and almost everyone who ever met Eukaliptus has similar memories. "He can see the man's soul" - Urszula Bialobok the breeder from Michalow Stud used to say.
It's getting impossible to count all the winning get, grand and great grandget of Eukaliptus all over the world but the more impressive achievement of this magic stallion is that if you take any of top Arabian horses pure or part Polish lines the chances are very high that it will be carrying Eukaliptus blood. If you were one of those happy people who met him personally you will find this special, Eukaliptus-like look in many champions around the world. And if you never had a chance to see him alive - you are able to touch the history of this aristocratic sire in every of his descendants, one of them can stand in your nearest barn... q
Izabella Pawelec-Zawadzka, the Polish Arabian Horse Breeders Society President and the world known Arabian horse authority:
EUKALIPTUS was one of this God's creatures which pleased each sense of human being. He emanated of pride, dignity and aristocratic look. When standing, one had a feeling that - this is the King! At the same time that horse was so gentle, delicate and respectful in relationship with people. The depth of his big, dark eyes seemed to discover the essence of something great and eternal. There is a fabulous photo of EUKALIPTUS by Rick Van Lent Sr. in his fabulous album showing the horse and the man. That unbelievable photo in like in sepia colours was taken in Kurozw˛eki State Stud in late 80 -ies. In shadowy golden light the head of a white horse close to the wrinkled face of an elder groom. Full confidence and understanding! The exemplification of everlasting friendship between horse and a man.
People loved him and he loved people. His stall was the most frequently visited place in all three state studs. Everybody liked to be photographed with him. He was kind of a "duty teddy bear" but he just loved it and begging with his front leg for a sugar he posed like a movie star. Being a great breeding stallion EUKALIPTUS was like a horse pet.
I had the privilege to know personally his famous parents - sire BANDOS and dam EUNICE. If anybody remembers Eunice, she was one of these great ladies of the Arabian breed whose it is just impossible to forget. One of the most beautiful Comet daughters, golden silk bay of an extreme refinement and beauty she exemplified the sense of a beauty and motherhood. One could say - like mother, like son!
I remember well, probably one of the most dramatic moments in the history of post-war Arabian horse breeding in Poland when the management of the Polish state studs and studs directors were discussing the offer of Lasma Arabians of leasing EUKALIPTUS to the United States. It was a tough and arguing discussion. The emotional determination of Michalow director Mr. Ignacy Jaworowski asking to keep EUKALIPTUS as a breeding stallion in Michalow, from one side, and economic and promotional arguments from the other side, both fighting for the future and interest of Polish breeding. The final decision to let EUKALIPTUS go to America was not easy and certainly painful to Mr.Jaworowski.
When came my time in 1998 to retire from my official post as the inspector of a state studs, EUKALIPTUS was the Master of farewell ceremony what was for me the most wonderful reward.