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Saratoga Stud started breeding horses over 15 years ago.
We started with 7 mares, all inspected by our warmblood society with very good marks and comments which was a great start.
We bought our first stallion Carrick (Selle Francais) who was imported into South Africa from France as a weanling and was owned by Gerrie Du Toit of the Alzu stud. Carrick jumped 1.35m by the age of 7 and had fantastic technique and was a very easy ride. He then competed up to higher Novice in dressage showing his versatility as a stallion.Carrick was Saratoga Stud's foundation sire and we have over 20 broodmares by him as well as two young colts by him. Saratoga Talisman is three years old and we are expecting his first foals in the 2013/2014 season and the other young colt is rising 3. There are Carrick offspring country wide competing and winning in all disciplines, they are most known for their extreme rideability.
The next stallion Saratoga Stud imported was Waldemar G, a black tobiano KWPN stallion by Ringo (King/Furioso/Ferro) out of an Oldenburg mare by Levantos I. He has turned out to be as prepotent a sire as Carrick and has had 6 crops of foals on the ground that are all tall and elegant with their sire's fantastic movement and his talent for jumping (he was awarded 93.5% for his jump under saddle at his stallion test and 8.5 for his rideability) and his off the floor paces (he got 9/10 for movement as a foal at the Best of British foal show). Waldemar's progeny have won classes every year at South Africa's biggest showing show The Horse of the Year Show and he is the only fully South African licensed coloured warmblood stallion in South Africa, he has a few sons that are going to follow in his footsteps. He is proving to be an unbeatable combination to Carrick mares.
Saratoga then decided to strengthen their dressage lines and were very lucky to find and import Senergy, a black Hanoverian stallion by Sandro Hit out of a Donnerhall mare. His family in Germany have competed very successfully with Senergy having a licensed full brother who was also the four year old Hanoverian champion, reserve 6 year old world champion and reserve 6 year Budeschampionate. Senergy is very tall with striking beauty which he is throwing very strongly and he has two crops of foals on the ground. He is going to add size and long legs onto our mares as well as his super movement and easy going temperament.
Our next young stallion, Don Colour GF (Zfdp), had his first crop this last season and his foals are extremely impressive being big boned, long legged, very beautiful foals with their sire's head and a lot of Sabino markings.
This year we will see what Saratoga Talisman throws and we have a new young imported colt by Lordanos coming into South Africa ready for the 2013/2014 season.
Our aim as breeders are to breed sound, healthy, well handled youngstock with emphasis being on their temperament and then their ability. We breed horses that can jump and have good movement that can go forward to compete in any discipline to the top of their riders ability.
A bit about the owners:
Guy Benson spent two years in Argentina and the USA playing polo and became a springbok polo player on his return to South Africa. He has brought his fantastic horsemanship skills to the horses on Saratoga Stud. He has very good knowledge of horse nutrition and pastures and is the stallion handler at all the coverings with all the young stallions. He is still very active in the polo world being the chairman of Umpires and now moving onto coaching polo.
Jenni Benson has ridden since 10 years old and was very lucky to get the opportunity to jump in England for two years with the famous Freddie Welch in her early twenties where she gained invaluable experience in producing horses as well as finding out what made a good horse riding 8 horses a day of all shapes, sizes and temperaments and running a professional stable yard in England. When she returned to South Africa she met Guy and wanted to breed herself a warmblood which was the start of Saratoga Stud. Once Carrick became available more mares needed to be bought to make the stud into a viable commercial venture. Great care has been put into finding our mares from imported, proven sport horses to mares we have bred ourselves, we have now bred our fourth generation foal which is possibly one of the best foals we have bred and a definite stallion prospect that we will keep for the studs future.
Saratoga Stud has 200 horses on the stud and over 50 broodmares, our aim is to breed top quality horses with super temperaments and unlimited talent. Saratoga horses are starting to win classes in all disciplines all over the country and the "Saratoga" name is known for producing talented horses with great rideability and ability.
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