While Warmbloods and Thoroughbreds may be viewed as the darlings of the competition arena, statistics are indicating that other breeds are climbing the ranks in terms of popularity. EquineSA recently picked up a growing trend towards Quarter Horses, which are currently in the Top 5 popular breeds with buyers searching for horses for sale.
Equine SA recently spoke to Tiaan White, of Twin Ranch Quarter Horse Stud who submitted an advert on EquineSA.com to market and sell the Quarter Horse colt, Tiaan's Big John. Big John was marked as SOLD within just TWO WEEKS of submission.
View the Ad here...
Tiaan's comments and info below...
I bought my first Quarter Horse in 1997. The stud was established in 2002 when we registered our first foal. It was the same year our twin sons were born. That is where the name Twinranch came from. We farm commercially with sheep, cattle and almonds. We are very passionate about Quarter Horses and the western way of riding and working. Our small stud only keeps five broodmares to ensure that our youngstock get personal attention. We grow our foals out on pasture until they are two and then slowly start them. They are normally sold before they are three years old. We want to give our customers a horse with a good foundation that can excel in any equestrian sport. Although they are not schooled much before three years we try to get them well-handled and gentle. They can stand tied, box easily and are used to dogs, tractors, cars and other farm activities, noises and terrain.
We breed firstly for disposition and then for conformation and athleticism.
We want a good all round horse that can run a barrel race, herd cattle on the ranch and also look good in the show ring. Our horses are raised on the farm, which makes them surefooted and exposed to all kinds of obstacles and terrain that horses can otherwise find very intimidating.
Our ranch geldings are used for herding cattle and sheep and we also compete in Western Mounted Games. One of our horses was 5th overall in the 2018 National competition and was also selected for the National SAEF team. Horses we have sold are used for breeding, ranch work, hacking, western riding, reining, show jumping and mounted games.
A Quarter Horse is a people pleaser and will do his best to please his rider. They are very athletic, but easy to control. They can run hard the one moment and when ask to stop, will settle down immediately. They can keep their cool at all times.
Buyers must buy horses that are registered with the SA Quarter Horse Association. I see a lot of horses advertised as Quarter Horses or Quarter Horse crosses, but if you enquire about the Quarter Horses in the horse’s pedigree, no information is forthcoming. Buyers must buy horses that have the typical build and disposition of a Quarter Horse.
The Quarter Horse is known as the most versatile horse in the world, but still certain bloodlines will do better in the disciplines that that they were bred for. It is therefore for better to stick to proven bloodlines.
A green broke (i.e. basically backed and schooled) Quarter Horse would cost anything between R35,000.00 and R50,000.00. If it has very specific bloodlines for which there is a big demand, then the price can be much higher. Certain reining bloodlines can cost four times the average price. Well-schooled Quarter Horses are very hard to find, simply because their owners don’t sell them.
I would say, educate yourself so that you know what is expected from you and your horse and then buy a horse that can fill those expectations. Go to clinics and speak to local and international trainers before you buy. Buy a horse that is already at least green broke so that you can see what it is capable of.
I think that in the specialized disciplines our horses are still behind the top international horses. But that is not all the horse’s fault. But the amateur Quarter horse that is an all-rounder that must run barrels and do some eventing and be a steady hacker, compares well with the international amateur Quarter horse.
The dollar price makes it very expensive to buy something worthwhile abroad. I think we do need some new blood in South Africa, but our horses are actually very trainable.