AHT's May Leader Of The Times
Leader Of The Times: Eleanor’s Arabians
by CHRISTY EGAN
Eleanor Hamilton’s horse program is now over 35 years old and the venerable horsewoman and breeder of National winning Arabian and Half-Arabian working western horses is herself a very young and spirited 83. Still breeding, raising and riding reiners at her farm, north of the twin cities in Minnesota, Eleanor is the first to point out that she owes her love of horses and probably much of her strength and determination, to a childhood of riding and cattle ranching in the Sandhills of Nebraska.
“We did everything with the horses at the ranch,” Eleanor remembers. “We rode them to work cattle, to work the fields and to get us kids to school in all kinds of weather. Those horses of my childhood are the reason I will always breed and own horses with sound conformation and great, people-oriented temperament and trainability. My Arabian horses will always be working horses first. I love a handsome horse, but it’s critically important that mine be honest and get their jobs done. My dad’s horses worked cattle in the Sandhills day after day, all four seasons, and never let us down. This memory of sound, dependable horses is the very soul of my Arabian and Half-Arabian breeding program.”
Eleanor’s initial bloodlines are based on the *Muscat son, Crown Musc+, a solid and reliable stallion, and Eleanor’s first, good show horse. Then, Eleanor brought home the great national winning stallion, Hesa Zee+/ in 1995. Hesa Zee+/ took Eleanor’s Arabians to an entirely new level. In the past several years (almost continuously after his passing in 2015), Hesa Zee+/ has consistently been the leading working western Arabian sire in the breed. At the 2018 U.S. National Championships, Hesa Zee+/ was the sire of National Champions Zee Fire Storm, Hesa Cassanova+, Zee Fire Ball and Art By Hesa. At that same show, National and Reserve National Champions out of Hesa Zee daughters included WGA Ima Copy Katnic+//, Nspiring For The Top+//, Dunit My Way RA, Half Spoon Of Pepto, Dunit On Fyre RA, Hollywood Firecracker+/ and EAF Hesa Little Whiz. It’s not hard to see that this is a bloodline and program breeding on strongly into the future.
At the 2019 Scottsdale show, Hesa Artfull Zee (2018 Canadian National Champion Open Reining) was Scottsdale Reserve Champion Arabian Reining Futurity (with Gary Ferguson), and Art By Hesa was Scottsdale Reserve Champion Arabian Reining/ARHA Maturity (with Colby Powell). Both horses are sired by Hesa Zee+/.
Eleanor’s breeding manager, Mark Coombs, says that the farm is expecting 2019 purebred and Half-Arabian foals sired by Hesa Zee+/, and Half-Arabian foals by Busy Winning Chex, Justa Genuine Jack and Romanek. Quarter Horse mares Shiny Wranglers (Roosters Wrangler) and Paddys Nu Diamond (Paddys Irish Whiskey) are both expecting foals by Hesa Zee+/ in the next few weeks. Sheza Velvet Rose (Hesa Zee+/), a Region 10 Reining Champion, produced the first foal of the season by San Jacinto Jullyen V on February 18th. The new baby has a beautiful face and a classy little star. On March 13th, Miss Muscana (Hesa Zee+/), a full sister to 5-time National Champion and Reserve Reining, EAF Hesa Wizard+, delivered Eleanor’s foal number two, a handsome buckskin filly by Busy Winnin Chex (Nu Chex To Cash).
Eleanor’s Arabians are trained at home by Rod Matthiesen, and sent out for training to Gary Ferguson, Pam Rose and Lance Scheffel.