Established in 1967, Gerzanne Stud on New Zealand’s beautiful North Island continues to remain very successful in the show-ring. Over the current summer show season, their homebred mare SS Tiflaa has, in particular, been incredibly dominant.
Gerzanne Stud, founded by Sue Spratt and run with lifelong friend, Bev Jones, specialises in breeding straight Egyptian Arabians, with their foundations coming from the acclaimed Simeon Stud in Australia. While the Simeon stallions influenced the Gerzanne programme immensely, Sue’s imported mare, Simeon Setami (Simeon Sadik x Simeon Sucie by Raadin Royal Star) was also extremely significant in the Gerzanne breeding programme. Predominantly a colt producer, Simeon Setami nicked particularly well with Gerzanne’s imported stallion, TF Fezzan (Botswana x Ramses Forever by Prince Ibn Shaikh), bred by Talaria Farms in Georgia, USA. The 2009 New Zealand National Champion Stallion, TF Fezzan has made his mark on Gerzanne Stud. The cross of he with Setami proved potent – first with the 2006 stallion SS Farid, who followed in his sire’s footsteps to win the National Champion Stallion title, then full brother SS Kais, a double New Zealand National Champion, and now with SS Tiflaa.
Foaled in 2008, SS Tiflaa was a star of the stud from the moment she was born; indeed, her name means ‘little girl’ in Arabic. Elegant and beautiful, with a lovely length of neck, great form and beautiful movement, it was clear that Simeon Setami had produced a very special daughter for Gerzanne Stud. “We very much believe in not pushing our horses,” explains Sue. “We never have rushed them and, after 50 years of breeding, we are not going to start now! Instead, we let them develop at their own pace, and their own personalities shine through, and has always worked well for our horses. Gerzanne-bred horses have gone on to excel in halter, ridden, endurance and dressage, and we are delighted that they have done so well for such a wide range of owners. SS Tiflaa was a case in point – we didn’t want to push her in the show-ring too soon, and our patience has paid off.”
A beautiful grey, SS Tiflaa was competitive from a young age and now, as a mare, she is truly making her mark. At the North Island Arabian Championships, held last December, SS Tiflaa won her class and was named Champion Purebred Mare. Then, this last week at the all important New Zealand National Championships, held in the country’s South Island, SS Tiflaa was named New Zealand National Champion Mare – a huge honour, and following in the footsteps of her brothers and sire in winning a top National title.
“We are incredibly thrilled that Tiflaa has taken this title,” says an emotional Sue. “We are so honoured to have bred many National Champion horses, but each one is just as special. With Tiflaa being Setami’s only daughter by Fezzan, she means so much to us. It was a big decision to send her all the way down to Christchurch – a journey of 1,000km and taking almost 20 hours there and back – and to see her shine in such wonderful company was a magical moment.”
Plans are now in place to breed SS Tiflaa and continue this majestic straight Egyptian line found in New Zealand. And who knows, she may well have a foal at foot by the time the 2019 WAHO Conference is held in Australia. There will be pre- and post-conference tours to New Zealand, and Gerzanne Stud should firmly be on your list of ‘must visit’ farms while you are in Australasia. You won’t be disappointed.