First published in The Arabian Breeders’ Magazine Volume I Issue IV July 2017.
Celebrating the Champions – Yanny
Danna Gowans and her parents, Jackie and Peter Givens, have started the UK showing season with much to smile about, as their two-year old gelding, Yanni, took the Gelding Championship at the Classic Show in May. Known for many years for their superlative big-moving Crabbet gelding, Astrologer (Ibn Aboud x Aureme), the family looked for another horse to continue showing with now that Astrologer has retired.
“We knew that we wanted something very special,” gushes Danna. “Over the years, we had so much fun with Astrologer and we wanted a young horse who we could enjoy just as much. So, we began our search!”
That search led them to the Welsh hills and to Sue and Emrys Jones’ Bychan Arabians. “We knew that whichever horse we got, he had to be special, and we didn’t rush our search,” explains Danna. “We went the Jones’ and this amazing chestnut gelding looked at me. I immediately knew that he was the one.”
The gelding in question was Yanny, sired by double British National Champion Master Design GA (Versace x BEA Society Belle), owned by Sue and Emrys’ son, Rod, and out of their homebred mare, Yannah. Now 18-years old, Yannah is by Elton (Abakan x Elebrema), a powerful Russian/Polish cross, and out of the Russian mare Yakima (Nizjni x Yakouta II).
“The moment I saw Yanny, I knew that he was the right horse for us,” says Danna. “He had bags of attitude, a long, elegant neck, huge eyes, and just the loveliest nature. And to make it even more perfect, Yanny is by Master Design! We have wanted a ‘MD’ baby for a long time now and to find a gelding who met our criteria, and also happened to be by this fantastic stallion, was just the icing on the cake.”
Yanny. Credit Sweet Photography.
Living in Stow in Scotland, on the Scottish Borders, Danna and Jackie condition the horse at home before taking them down to show over the border in England. “We are helped in conditioning by my son, Connor,” Danna smiles. “Connor is four years old and he and Yanny just love each other – and I love to watch them together!”
The first major show this year for many people was the Classic Show, held in north-west England in May. There, Yanny won his class in style, and went on to be named Gelding Champion. “It was the perfect start for us,” says Danna. “We were all thrilled, and we cannot wait for the British National Championships at Malvern at the end of July! Ryan Jones, who showed Yanny for us at the Classic, will once again be on the end of the rope, and we are really looking forward to seeing them together in that famous ring.”
However, it wasn’t just Yanny who the family left the Jones’ with; they also purchased Scarlet O’Hara (Master Design GA x Colour Me Scarlet), a three-year old filly. “We went with a view to buying one horse and we ended up with two,” laughs Danna. “My dad surprised mum with the filly for her 60th birthday! Mum has been breeding for over 20 years now, and we decided that it would be fun to bring in some fresh bloodlines to our little stud, including a Master Design daughter we can breed from. Scarlet will also be at Malvern and we look forward to seeing her show, too. We cannot thank Sue and Emrys enough for giving mum and I the chance to enjoy these special babies.”