There is no doubt that Om El Arab have bred some of the best Arabian horses in the world, and this month’s cover star is proving himself to be the next in a long line of Om El greats. Om El Shawan, a showy, typey four-year old bay stallion, is fast becoming a sire for the future.
Om El Shawan, bred by Om El Arab and owned with lifelong friend Diane Brown of Antheia Arabians, is representative of the incredible vision of the farm’s founder, the late Sigi Siller, a vision that is continued in style through her daughter, Janina Merz. Om El Shawan has a rich pedigree, being sired by the international giant FA El Shawan (Marwan Al Shaqab x Foxbriar Shakita), a multiple-garlanded champion stallion who passed too soon. Notably, Om El Shawan is the first leading Om El stallion in recent years not sired by one of the farm’s own studs; however, Foxbriar Shakita (ZT Shakfantasy x Selket Mirror) is a granddaughter of El Shaklan (Shaker El Masri x Estopa), Om El Arab’s first global homebred stallion. “This was one of the reasons FA El Shawan appealed to me,” explains Janina. “Using him, with the El Shaklan connection, tied the blood in nicely.”
Janina with Om El Shawan. Credit April Visel
Looking to Om El Shawan’s dam, we have the typey mare Om El Beladeena. Sired by Al Lahab (Laheeb x The Vision HG), Om El Beladeena is out of Om El Benedict (Sanadik El Shaklan x Om El Beneera), a star both in the show-ring and the breeding barn, including being dam of Titan AS (by El Nabila B). Through this damline, Om El Shawan marks the fourth generation of Om El Arab – and he is now siring the fifth in some style.
Credit April Visel
At his show-ring debut, Om El Shawan was Champion at Region 1 and in 2019, he was Region 2 Champion Two-year Old Colt. He was also lightly bred then as to test his potency, with Janina being thrilled by the results. His first foal was the beautiful bay filly Om El Enchanted (ex Om El Envie by WH Justice), and Janina immediately realise the potential of Om El Shawan as a future sire of note from the moment she was born.
Alamina with Om El Alazzurra, 2021 filly
This year, however, Om El Shawan really has proven himself. “His first foals showed me that Om El Shawan had the qualities needed to become an important sire for Om El Arab,” explains Janina. “However, his 2021 foals truly prove to me that he is a sire! Not just for our programme, but for the world.”
Om El Shawan x Om El Justadorable, 2021 filly
Three fillies in particular stand out for Janina. The first are two bays, one out of Om El Belita (WH Justice x Om El Bellafiore) and the other from Alamina (Om El Bellissimo x Alameda), named Om El Alazzurra. Then there a grey filly from Om El Justadorable (WH Justice x Om El Shahmaandura).
Tamimih Mudhar OEA (Om El Shawan x Om El Belita) has been sold to Sheikh Hamad Ali Al Thani’s Mudhar Stud in Qatar
“Tamimih Mudhar OEA, the Om El Belita filly, has just been sold to Sheikh Hamad Ali Al Thani in Qatar as foundation stock for his new farm, Mudhar Stud,” says Janina. “It is an honour that one of our beautiful Om El Shawan fillies will not only be heading overseas, but also to one of the most important breeders in recent years.
Credit April Visel
“From the very beginning, the interest by breeders around the world in Om El Shawan has been incredible. He truly is a cross-over stallion, appealing to those who have long been Om El Arab fans as well as those who have bred bloodlines different to ours. He is so complete structurally, and he is also very beautiful. He is passing this on to his progeny, stamping his mark each time. With this year’s foal crop, I am more excited than ever to watch his impact on our breeding programme, as well as those around the world, unfold.”
Janina and Shawan. Credit April Visel
There is no doubt that Om El Shawan comes from a long line of remarkable Arabian horses, each generation of which had an impact on a global stage. All the signs are there that he is now showing himself to be a sire for the future, one whose legacy will endure for years to come.
All photography unless stated Kelly Campbell
The Arabian Breeders’ Magazine: The Breeders Interview – Janina Merz, Om El Arab