News from SUMA



An Anniversary Tribute

PRIDE never got the write up he deserved on our site, somehow we were so busy with the others that his bio was never finished. So here is an expansion, read more...




We're offering two for sale: Georgie Girl 2 year old filly by Crosstown Dancer, Lot 589 and the foal Independence by VDL Arkansas, Lot 698 are being offered at the Cavan Breeding stock sale on Sunday, 1st December.

(Update: Both two horses are SOLD)



GREAT NEWS for us – The Sales Topper at Cavan!! An Arkansas filly foal bred by Ian Heslin from a young Clover Hill mare topped the Breeding stock sales at Euro 6,000! A beautiful bay brown with the lovely loose step that all his foals seem to have, bidders were falling over themselves to get her. She had not gone unnoticed in the showring as she had previously won at a couple of shows including placing at the National foal finals in Moate. Other breeders did very well too, congratulations to Gerry Goodwin, Allen Tubman and Karen Glendinning who all received over the Euro 3000 mark for their Arkansas youngsters. Also to Jacki Doherty who produced an outstanding early colt by Crosstown Dancer.

We wish all their purchasers the best of luck.

Our own foals are still with their mums, in the best of form, waiting for the November sales or private buyers on the farm. We think they are every bit as good as those in the sales but circumstances dictated they couldn’t be brought. (See Foals 2002 link)




VDL ARKANSAS who returned home to Holland to convalesce after his below par performance in Dublin made a surprise appearance at the WYHBC in Lanaken representing Guatemala. This unlikely event was prompted by the stallion’s return to fitness and the availability of a wildcard from Zangersheide to that country. Juan Andres Rodriguez only met up with Arkansas 3 days before their first class but the horse jumped consistently well with unfortunate time faults preventing a final day qualification. With requests for semen pouring in from ringside pundits Arkansas will remain at the VDL stud to have semen frozen before returning to us in the spring and to regular pilot Clem McMahon wit whom he has had such success.

Meanwhile a very sad day with CROSSTOWN DANCER returning to his owner/breeders Fintan and Stephen Branigan.)

We are very sorry to see him leave here but stallions do not settle easily into new homes and since we are getting older it was important that he moves while still young enough to accept the change. We all miss him as he has been a part of our family for so long and after Pride of Shaunlara departed he took on the role of dominant stallion. We wish all parties the very best of luck as there are few horses of his calibre on the register today. All future enquiries should be sent to Stephen ( although obviously we will be helping them any way we can.

Troubles on the home front meant we were unable to have three I.Ds inspected which is very disappointing. All by Huntingfield Rebel, they are a 4 y.o. daughter of The Thatcherite, a 4.y.o potential A.I.D. out of a Lakeview Pride and a lovely 2 y.o out of the former Supreme Champion Pride of Kildalton.

The loss of a foal is always sad and after a 5 week struggle we lost Skylark. Luckily Sky's Ablaze took it well and is in foal again to Archie. Her Lux Z yearling is a picture.




An excellent show in Dublin for our stallions stock again. Huntingfield Rebel had the winning I.D. colt and VDL Arkansas had the best non pure-bred. She was Res. Champion to the Blue Rajah purebred filly (whose sire we had bred). This outstanding foal whose mother was well down the line is owned by Patricia McKinney and is for sale. Crosstown Dancer had his usual excellent results, Lord of the Dance and Freddie Kruger both maintaining Championship form.



JULY 2002

VDL ARKANSAS travelled to Chester International Show in the U.K.where he jumped extremely well to take an equal first in the Aon 6 yr. olds and a third in the Foxhunter. But on returning he was off colour and off form for a while up to and sadly including the Kerrygold Show.

Our final two mares foaled at last, a lovely colt from Vixen's Frolic, and a pretty filly from Disco. See more details about these and other Foals 2002.





JUNE 2002

VDL Arkansas is in superb form. Today he finished 2nd in the Leinster region RDS qualifier for 6 yr. olds. He jumped 3 lovely clears finishing against the clock on a 1.30 course. With shows being cancelled everywhere due to the extremely wet conditions his next target is probably the N.I. Championships in Balmoral which he won in 2001.



MAY 2002

New book by Nick O'Hare, "The Modern Irish Draught", highlights Pride of Shaunlara and many other Suma Stud horses and their relations. An entire chapter is dedicated to PRIDE and his progeny. The book includes special mention of Crosstown Dancer, who is pictured on the books cover, and Huntingfield Rebel as well as their dams, Tara Sky and Whippy.

Finally another colt, Bay born 24/5 by Arkansas out of Music. A humdinger. Nine down, 2 to go but not till July for Disco and Vixen.

News from shows:
Both Crosstown Dancer and Huntingfield Rebel had winners at Balmoral.

Rosie, Suma's Sky's Ablaze has a gorgeous filly, bay, very pretty and athletic. Should be a queue for her with her jumping record, and its dads.

VDL Arkansas jumped last weekend, really pleased Clem, double clear on Saturday to qualify for the Final and finished 7th in that over a 2nd round 1.30 against the clock. He didn’t push him as it’s the first outdoor show this year. We were delighted as he retains all his bounce and ability.

We now have our 6th filly! Gloria foaled 2 weeks early but both well. Arkansas of course, a bay although she is chestnut. For more details see Foals 2002.

Whippy has had a massive colt, by VDL Arkansas, bay at present, probably go grey. Her 6th foal in 5 years! Super quality, no white at all. See more details about this foal and others, Foals 2002.



April 2002

Arkansas jumped once in Cavan just to confirm to people he really is back in Ireland, his usual double clear, before Clem headed off for nearly a month to Europe with his G.P string.

VDL Ricochet was inspected for the Irish Horse Register Stallion Approval and with 72.4% has been accepted for Performance Testing. We are delighted and fully expect him to receive full approval at the end of his 5 y.o. year when he can be re-inspected with sufficient points under his belt. He has also taken to his stallion role with great zest!

Rob, George and Archie all have their first mares in foal so spring is definitely under way.

More foals arriving, Cafe au Lait. by Pessoa VDL ex Sumas Horlicks. Grey filly. See more Foals 2002.

We've added a new Photo Gallery to our website so that you can see more of our horses. Hope you enjoy them as much as we do! Click on the photo gallery button (in the above menu).



March 2002

VDL Arkansas has his first foals of the year
Beautiful bay colt by VDL Arkansas out of "It's an Ology", first day out.






February 2002

VDL Ricochet jumped a double clear round to win a rosette at his first appearance at Cavan and was in his first Irish stallion parade on 9th February 2002, he looked beautiful.



January 2002

Firstly, the major news that we have VDL ARKANSAS (Archie) for at least another year, now a newly Approved Stallion . This is great news not only for us but also for all those who have seen him jumping and who have seen his foals. They are in great demand and fetched excellent prices. (Up to £8,000)

Final Jump in the Five Year old Cavan Classic, winning on time

ARCHIE completed another fantastic Season, and has now won 4 out of the 5 Championships he has contended i.e. RDS 4 y.o, Indoor Cavan 4 y.o, Balmoral N.I. 5.y.o Jumping Championships, and the prestigious Cavan Classic. In the Final Jump off against the clock, Peter Gillespie had the fences up to 1.50m! Some test for the 5 year olds. Recently he received FULL APPROVAL for the I.S.H. Studbook after his performance test and full veterinary including X rays.

Clem McMahon hopes to take him to a couple of small International Shows this season and to aim for some top competitions here but we will also make him available to cover as often as possible. We do ask for your understanding if he is not always at home. As with all the stallions that actually DO something, there must be a balance between proving themselves and passing it on to the next generation.


Our partners, the VDL stud in Holland have asked us to stand a beautiful young stallion, VDL Ricochet by AHORN (Keur) ex dam by LORD, whose second dam is by the Irish bred Waterman by WATER SERPENT. We always said the KWPN success was founded on our lines! His pedigree is outstanding and the horse matches it with his jump and in looks. Also we can see this fella getting many show winners with his action and quality. Standing 170cm, bay with very little white he has a sweet nature, and will follow the programme that Arkansas did at 4. Let's hope he's even half as good!


CROSSTOWN DANCER (George) made the RDS his own this year! He sired the outstanding 4 y.o. Middleweight Champion Lord of the Dance, and to boot the Res. Champ. 4.y.o. heavyweight, Freddie Kruger. In addition he had three finalists in the loose jumping, one of which was full Irish Draught and another was the result of an embryo transfer. GEORGE also took part in the Irish Draught National Show at Necarne where he was ridden by his owner, Stephen Branigan, who, with his business commitments could only manage a couple of rides beforehand. Nonetheless he finished a worthy reserve Champion to stablemate HUNTINGFIELD REBEL, and also competed in the Dressage, placing 2nd. He sired many winners and placed stock including the Young mare winner, Derrynagara Clorin,

HUNTINGFIELD REBEL (Rob), who maintains his "all-grey" gene, rode beautifully for his student rider and Head Girl at Suma, Catriona Shanley, to win the Ridden Championship and his stock from his first Irish crops did exceedingly well. Also the Supreme Champion and winning mare Nancy Steele is expecting an early foal by him.The Reserve Champion was Peter McHughs by his sire GLENAGYLE REBEL. Next year will see his first progeny under saddle.


The forgotten horse at SUMA is Murphy! But none of the others has had a Horse of The Year Show prizewinner, which Murphy did! COOLBAWN out of a T.B. mare was a constant Show Hunter winner through the year culminating in a fifth place in Wembley. His ID son, out of a Heather Breeze dam, Castleroche Red Alert is also doing him proud in Amateur Jumping with a new rider. He himself is now competing at weekends with Catriona, enjoying every minute of it.


One of you, out there, still has our Number Four Blue Equitainer which travelled to you in May/June with semen from one of the stallions. Is it YOU???? Can you guarantee that yours was returned to us? Please look again, in the garage, in the back of the barn, the boot of the car even, as it represents a huge loss to us and means we have to take more precautions this coming season.


Read our News 2007

Read our News 2006

Read our News 2005

Read our News 2004

Read our NEWS 2003

Read our NEWS 2002






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