Liviano III x Comico x Regidor VIII
Breeder: Gran Ducado Ganaderia, Granada, Spain
The story from the beginning ...
I found him at the age of 5 at his breeder´s yard in Granada. I was looking for a talented young dressage horse in Spain. I was a bit disappointed by my Oldenburg dressage horse, which has always been some kind of ill and I nursed him more, than I rode him. It was not a horse to make plans for a big dressage career. One day I saw a picture of a tall brown Spanish horse, which was for sale in Germany. And this unspectacular brown horse looked very sporty and absolutely not like those fairytale horses with long mane and tails, just throwing the front legs up into the air without any compulsion from behind. Once I rode this Spanish horse – I never wanted to stop. He felt wonderful.
So I bought this little (compared to the German warmblood horses) Cruzado Andaluz Gelding, Companero. He was easy to handle, didn´t fear anything, was clever and eager to learn. 3 years later I rode my first Prix St. Georg with him. But the quality of his basic gaits was not enough to win. So I decided to go to Spain and look for a good, talented young dressage horse, which would maybe be as easy as Companero has been – who was a gelding (need to say that!). I tried about 15 spanish horses and decided to take the grey one, with the enormous walk and the good trot – straight forward – and canter with such an ability to collect, home. I didn´t care for the beauty- they were all beautiful in Spain. I was just interested in his basic gaits.
Ducado arrived on a cold Novemberday in Bavaria. When the Lorrydriver opended the door I was stunned by the outstanding beauty of this fairytale horse, which was mine now. I excused myself for buying such a beautiful one, for my intention was only to buy a sportive horse. But… in fact … it is no problem if they are beautiful! During times you can´t ride them joyfully – you can just look at them.
Then it took me one year to figure out how to ride a hot tempered Spanish stallion! Ducado was playing in a different league. His reactions were so fast – he has always been in front of my aids, far in front! Already at the end of the arena – when I was just thinking of preparing to canter. It was a hard first year of teambuilding. We discussed a lot about the german interpretation of “contact” and “impulsion”. I could say: We did not speak the same language. An that´s definitely a fact, because I still don’t´s speak Spanish.
As a stallion Ducado was absolutely non complicated. He seemed not really interested in mares, he went to the field like all the other horses – and he still does. He could live a normal horselife as a stallion. So I just let him do. That changed a bit during the years – he is well aware of who he is and what he is capable to. He already had the idea that there might be things more interesting than a bale of hay. But he is still easy to handle. He never bucked anybody off, he never ever reared or ran away. He doesn´t fear anything, never spooks or turns away. He just likes to take the control over the reins and do his individual version of the scale of training or the lessons.
In his first dressage competition he made a fool of me. The second – he won. In the same season he stepped up another level and won many ribbons. Sometimes not, if there were many Haflinger girls on the other track – he could not keep a contact to the riders hand. Those chubby blond girls from the alps were too tempting to show extended walk or stand up with immobility during the halt. But what I have to say clearly: I was not treated bad by the Austrian and German judges with this Pura Raza Espanola horse. They do like him! If we did a good turn – we got high marks. If I made a lot of nonsense – or he did – then not. Sometimes there was a remark in the protocol, that the walk tour was outstanding. Who says the Spanish horses can´t walk?! Ducado-G can!
In the last seasons I was asked, if it would be possible to cover warmblood mares with him. I didn´t buy him as a breeding stallion, but… riders usually like the thought that their horse is far beyond average. So I thought about that – if he might be the right one to breed to german horses. It took me some years to find the courage to bring him to the stallion licensing of “Zuchtverband für deutsche Pferde” (breeding association for German horses). An Austrian brings a spanish horse to a German licencing… sounds ridiculous. The offspring is definitly a European!
The judges should decide if he is good enough or not. I am just a dressage rider and trainer – I will accept the decision and not think of anything until he is accepted or not. I didn´t school him a lot for the presentation, he has proofed himself with several wins and placements in the dressage arena, he should now how to trot and how to canter. I would have liked it to present him under saddle, but that´s unusual during the licencing process. There was just one little problem with presenting Ducado for the licensing… this fairytale horse is really a good guy, no bucking, no rearing, no spooking… but the beautiful one with the big black eyes - is a crocodile! He bites. Everybody, everywhere at any time. Even worse if you lead him through the trotup. So I was looking for someone to present him, who could run so effortlessly that he has both hands to smack him before Ducados teeth clutch to his arm. The young athlete doing the running part was really bitten a lot, but he did a great job and survived unharmed.
And the German jury approved Ducado-G in Germany – of course for breeding him to P.R.E.s – and also that foals of German mares would get full papers as German horse. He was chosen for his beautiful type, which fits perfectly into the dressagehorse breeding programm and of course his walk was mentioned as a strong point. He presented himself very well in the liberty class, showing off his realistic strong basic gaits with a big ability for collection. In the presentation on the triangle – he concentrated a bit too much on biting.
Then I had to care for a breeding career, making him available for breeders of P.R.E. throughout Europe and for German breeders for a crossbreeding project. I handed this over to professionals and found a very competent and noncomplicated partner in the Bachl Families stallion station in Bavaria. The Bachl familiy offers high classified stallions for breeding jumping horses. Ducado is a white dressage spot in the row of the high decorated jumping stallions. Breeding with Ducado is really easy. His semen is of a high quality – sometimes we think it might be enough if he knows the mare on facebook…
Frozen semen is available!