Joe and Kim Orr squeezed each other’s hands, nervously anticipating the results of the judges’ deliberations. In a European-like setting of emerald grass rimmed with picturesque VIP tents, the 2021 Arabian Breeders World Cup Supreme Senior Mare Championship winner was about to be named. Their dark bay beauty, Jasminia AS (Soul Of Marwan AS x Jasmine Love), a product of the Arabian Soul breeding program in Mexico, had won the championship for her age group but was the youngest of the senior contenders. The caliber of mares was exceptional, with the title completely up for grabs.
“We were expecting and hoping to get the Bronze,” Joe confides. “When they didn’t call her name we thought, ‘uh-oh.’ It was a sinking feeling as the Silver, too, went to another horse. Then, when she was called out for the Gold, we were elated! It was thrilling to win against such exceptional mares!” Those present saw Joe and Kim leap to their feet, their joy evident and infectious. As Supreme Champion, Jasminia earned the coveted silk saddle donated by the King of Morocco and a spectacular bronze by cherished friend Carol Fensholt Nierenberg that Joe treasures even more.
“The World Cup show committee deserves praise for pulling off this event in such a short time,” Joe continues. “COVID forced the change from Las Vegas to the outside setting at the Polo Field in Scottsdale, and it was perfection. That, and the incredible trophies offered separate the World Cup from other shows.” Having originally selected Jasminia as the entry into the Arabian world for a friend (for whom she won two Scottsdale championships), Joe and Kim consider themselves lucky to reap the rewards of her ownership.
They were staggered by over 300 messages of congratulations from all over the world, celebrating Jasminia and the talents of her handler, renowned horseman Rodolfo Guzzo. “He believed in Jasminia as a young filly and saw her potential when other trainers didn’t,” says Joe. As the only trainer in her undefeated career, Guzzo deeply appreciates Jasminia’s outstanding qualities. “She is a special horse,” he explains. “Very lovely, and very kind. She is super-feminine and elegant, and her movement! Always, when she comes into the arena, she is charismatic and full of trot, that is really the charm. She has a clean throat, pretty face, a super length of neck, great body, and upright tail, and that fantastic movement. Plus, her dark bay color makes a difference. In my opinion, the whole package is incredible.”
When Jasminia first arrived in his care three years earlier, Guzzo assigned his son the job of conditioning the filly. The victim of an accident that robbed him of all but 25% vision in one eye, Rodolphino has a special way of communicating with horses through touch and an open-hearted attention that is fully reciprocated. “There is no filter there,” says Guzzo. “It’s the most authentic love and passion, and for him, Jasminia is ‘The Horse.’ To see my son’s happiness and emotion when she won was worth everything. Joe and Kim respect what he has done for her. I really appreciate that.”
For now, Jasminia will take a hiatus from the show ring to spend time in the Orrs pastures in Washington. “Three people have already purchased embryos from her, and we have bred her to Aria Rakeem,” Joe explains. “Kim and I love the lifestyle and the grounding from the animals. We are in this for the fun of it, and Jasminia will be having some spa years at the ranch before returning to competition. We can’t wait to bring her home. She is, simply, a Rose City Arabian.”