Stallion Welcome S Reported Dead, Aged 22
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SLATINGTON, Pennsylvania, Aug. 11–The Hanoverian stallion Welcome S (World Cup I-Grebina/Grande) has been euthanized due to infirmities of age. He was 22 years old. Welcome was owned by Jan van der Kamp and was managed by his daughter, Patricia Stemerdink of Dekstation de Havikerwaard in De Steeg, Netherlands.
Mo and Jim Swanson of Rolling Stone Farm leased Welcome for breeding after a chance meeting in Germany with a mutual friend who made the arrangement.
Welcome was champion stallion at Verden, Germany in 1989. He was trained from a three-year-old German Olympic champion Isabell Werth, and successfully competed at Grand Prix Level. He held first place in the world ranking of international dressage horses and won a total of €89,951 (US$127,000) in his lifetime.
His sire World Cup I, together with his grandsire, Grande, represent two of the most successful dressage sire lines. Welcome’s victories included: Munster Grand Prix, 1995; Amsterdam Grand Prix World Cup, 1996; Brussels Grand Prix, 1996; Berlin Grand Prix, 1996; Vlotho-Exter Grand Prix, 1997; Bremen Grand Prix and Grand Prix Kür, 1997 and Frankfurt, Grand Prix Kür, 1997.
Before April 1998, Welcome was not used for breeding. His first crop of foals was born in 1999, and rewarded with a super foal report by the KWPN. One of his first sons, Sledgehammer (damsire Ladalco) was third in the foal championships at Arnhem. His offspring have expressed a lot of dressage ability under saddle. His daughter, Trix DDH (damsire Donnerschlag), won the ability test in Varsseveld in 2003 as a three-year-old. His son Scotch (damsire Flemmingh) won the Gelderse Championship in 2004 at M Level and the full sister of Trix DDH, U2 DDH was second in the ability test for three-year-old dressage horses in Varsseveld. A son of Welcome (damsire Weltmeyer) was sent through the 2003 Den Bosch stallion selections and a Westphalian branded four-year-old mare (damsire Brentano II) was sold through the P.S.I auction in 2004 for €56,000 (US$79,000).
In the U.S., Welcome S foals have been tall, leggy, surprisingly typey in many cases and super movers. A 2005 Welcome filly out of a Thoroughbred dam was chosen as the top foal at the American Hanoverian Society Idaho inspection site. The first two foals by Welcome bred by Rolling Stone Farm both received Premium Foal Awards at the German Oldenburg Verband inspection held at RSF in 2007, and one out of two Welcome foals received premium status at the GOV inspection in 2008. The colt sold immediately at weaning, while the filly is being retained by RSF for a future riding and breeding career. In 2009, three Welcome S foals were born at RSF and two very beautiful, typey filly foals were presented to the AHS. The birth of these foals completes the requirement for Elite Mare Status for their dams. A third filly was presented to the Oldenburg Horse Breeders Society, and received premium status. Rolling Stone Farm is looking forward to starting the oldest homebred Welcome offspring under saddle in 2010. There are several pregnancies for next year.
The Swansons described Welcome S as “magnificent, masculine and massive, standing 17.1 hands (175cm) with large bone and frame. His movement was surprisingly light and expressive, and he loved to show off his extravagant extended trot. He was a gentle giant and will be missed terribly.”