Spanish Riding School 2005 American Tour

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Fran Jurga
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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

How Old Are The Stallions?

Did you know that Lipizzans are one of the slowest breeds to mature? Many of the Spanish Riding School's stallions are reaching the heights of their careers long after performing sport horses of the same age have retired. Their secret is in the methodic, classical training and in these horses' remarkable soundness and strength.

Here are some age facts about the 30 stallions coming to the USA this weekend:

Oldest: Siglavy Mantua I, born 22 January 1979; followed closely by Neapolitano Nima I, born 11 April of the same year. "Mantua" is the oldest of all the stallions at the stables in Vienna. You will be hearing much more about this horse; in spite of his age, he is the horse who performs the beautiful solo routine, with Oberbereiter ("senior rider") Klaus Krzisch.

Youngest: Three stallions are only nine years old. They are Maestoso Cattinara, Maestoso Virtuosa,and Favory Bartonia. They are the youngest. In Vienna performances, younger stallions present a group display as part of their training at the lower levels but no younger ones will be on the USA tour.

Photo: I hope this photo is clear enough for you to be able to read the lovely stall marker on Siglavy Mantua I's stall at home in Vienna. It was an honor for me to be able to visit him at his stall. Each stallion's name is similarly handwritten on his stall sign, with the year of his birth. If you look closely, in the background you can see one of the ornate plaster horseheads embellishing the vaulted ceiling of the stable.


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