Palmira l Farewell to a Polish Powerhouse
2 February 1995 – 17 May 2023
The international Arabian horse community bid farewell to one of the last remaining Polish-bred daughters of Monogramm (Negatraz x Monogramma by Knippel), as the beloved Palmira passed peacefully in her sleep at her lifelong home in Michałów Stud on 17 May.
Palestyna. Credit Stuart Vesty
Born in the second, and subsequently the largest, revolutionary foal crop of her legendary sire at Michałów in 1995, Palmira was eagerly expected, as elder sister Palestyna, born just 13 months earlier, was one of the most celebrated fillies in residence amongst the eldest Monogramm get. Their dam, the precious and prolific Palestra (ex Patera by Bandos) was a matron on ascent in the 1990s, universally admired as one the most enchanting, superbly conformed and athletically gifted daughters of European and Polish National Champion Stallion Penitent (Partner x Penza by Faher), a superlative show horse celebrated the world over for his uncompromising masculine substance, commanding charisma and magnificent movement. Like so many of the members of Michałów’s ‘P’ family of champions, tracing directly to the Tersk-bred import Pienoczka (Pawodok x Naturalistka by Naseem), herself a tail-female descendant of the breed’s most celebrated foundation mare – the iconic desert-bred Rodania who established her unparalleled dynasty at Crabbet Park in the late 19th century – Palestra matured with uncompromising grace and elegance, becoming more beautiful, refined and compelling with each passing decade. Sold at the age of 15 to the United Arab Emirates, Palestra made her international show-ring debut as a mature matron in her late teens, earning accolades at the Ajman Show, Sharjah International Arabian Horse Festival, and the Middle East Championships under the Al Zobair banner for HE Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohamed Al Thani, who still treasures the mare as one of his all-time favourites.
Palestra. Credit Fotograf Mattsson
Palmira. Credit Fotograf Mattsson
Given the high esteem in which elder sister Palestyna was held by all who knew her, the Poles were exceedingly pleased to discover that Palmira appeared to be even more captivating. She possessed an undeniable aristocratic presence, an irresistible feminine charm, an indefatigable show attitude, and the irrepressibly powerful, physics-defying, animated trot of both her treasured sire and dam. Born a dark rich bay, Palmira boasted a dark steel grey coat by the time she was weaned, one that would slowly lighten over the next decade into varying shades of dazzling dappled-ness like nearly all the grey female descendants of her esteemed dam family. While many of the other superstar daughters of Monogramm, the likes of Kwestura, Zagrobla, Fallada, Ekscella, Eskalopka and Emmona, accrued international show ring acclaim in the late 1990s and early 2000s, Palmira contentedly bid her time in the background as a matron at Michałów until her time of triumph arrived with imposing magnitude and nearly unstoppable momentum.
Palmira. Credit Fotograf Mattsson
This excerpt from Arabian Excellence Elevated: The Magnificent Daughters of Monogramm, featured in The Arabian Breeders Magazine Collector’s Edition 2021 and online at thearabianmagazine.com, fondly recalls the incomparable career of Palmira as an iconic show horse that never failed to impress and inspire.
“Once Palmira began to whiten, with significant fleabites developing in her lustrous coat, she became a formidable force in the show-rings of Europe. She would earn her first major title at the age of eight, as World Reserve Senior Champion Mare in 2003 with her explosive trot and undeniable command of the spacious ring in Paris. Four years later at the age of 12, Palmira would earn her three most prestigious titles in the span of six weeks: Polish National Champion Senior Mare and Best in Show on home turf, along with Senior Champion Mare and highest scoring entry at the All Nations Cup in Aachen, winning both the Lady Harmsworth Blunt Trophy for Poland as the most successful country at the highly competitive event as well as the Major Hedley Memorial Cup awarded to the Best Breeder for Michałów, the ultimate honour in the breed.”
Palmira’s most imposing performances as Senior Champion Mare in both Poland and Aachen still endure as pinnacles of standard-raising perfection, ensuring Palmira’s legendary acclaim among the most venerated mares in Arabian show-ring history.
Palmira in Aachen. Credit Erwin Escher – and lead photo
Given her late start as a show horse of global renown, it was rather unexpected for Palmira to be the first of the Monogramm daughters to earn the WAHO Trophy for Poland in 2010. This ultimate honour, bestowed for significant achievements as both a show horse and a broodmare, foreshadowed Palmira’s enduring legacy of genetic greatness in Poland and abroad.
Pistoria. Credit Stuart Vesty
Among the best of the Palmira descendants worldwide are three exceptional daughters bred at Michałów. Chief amongst these is the glorious Pistoria (by Gazal al Shaqab), a superlative show horse in her own right as European Junior Gold and Senior Silver Champion, All Nations Cup Senior Bronze Champion, Austrian International Senior Bronze Champion and five-time World Top Ten Champion, twice as a filly and three times as a mare. Purchased for the royal sum of €625,000 in the 2015 Pride of Poland Auction, Pistoria is now proudly owned by Al Zobair Stud where she, not unsurprisingly given the success of her prodigious predecessors well into their teens, added the prestigious titles of Abu Dhabi International and UAE National Gold Champion Senior Mare to her long list of accolades at 14 years of age. Moreover, she is cherished as the progenitress of the Palestra legacy for Sheikh Abdullah.
Prawica. Credit Sweet Photography
Palmira’s eldest daughter, the colourfully marked chestnut Prawica (by Ararat) born in 2001, was sold as a maiden mare in the 2005 Pride of Poland Auction to Paul and Frances Atkinson in the United Kingdom, where she has since established herself as a respectable matron. Shown to great success all over Great Britain under the Cullinghurst Stud banner, Prawica earned the titles of North Western Arabian Gold Champion Senior Mare, HoCon Champion Senior Mare, and class winner at the AHS National Show, as well as a trio of triumphant titles at the Southeast Arabian Horse Show as Senior Champion Mare, Supreme Champion Female and Supreme Champion Arabian Exhibit. Aging with peerless perfection in the ‘P’ family tradition, Prawica was honoured with her final show-ring accolade at 15 years of age as class winner in senior mare class at the British Breeders Alliance Show in a memorable line up of mares.
Parmana. Credit Erwin Escher
At Michałów, the Palmira legacy continues through the youngest of her daughters: the precious Parmana (by Al Maraam) born in 2008. Earning the Reserve Championship at the Białka Spring Show and Polish National Top Five honours in the Junior Female competition as a yearling, Parmana was leased and campaigned by Athbah Stud of Saudi Arabia for several seasons following. Under the lesseeship of HRH Prince Abdulaziz bin Ahmed Al Saud, Parmana competed at many of the elite shows in Europe and the Middle East, always finishing amongst the top scores while earning the Gold Championship at Arabian Horse Days in Ströhen, Germany, and Top Ten honours at the World Championships in Paris.
Ptolemeusz. Credit Patrycja Makowska
To date, Parmana is the most prolific producer of champions of all the Palmira daughters, having produced three champion progeny to date: Moroccan National and El Jadida International Gold Champion Lammah Athbah (by Aja Justified); European, Polish National and Białka Spring Show Silver Champion Ptolemeusz (by Złoty Medal); and All-Polish Silver Champion Parmania (by Kahil al Shaqab). Parmania continues the succession of champion descendants for the Palmira family with two and counting: Białka Spring Show Silver Champion and European Cup Bronze Champion Porto Rico (by Złoty Medal); and Białka Spring Show Gold Champion Pesalina (by El Omari). All three successive generations – Parmana, Parmania and Pesalina – are still essential members of the Michałów broodmare band, ensuring Palmira’s legacy is one that will continue to thrive for the benefit of the breed in the years ahead.
Parmania. Credit Erwin Escher
Porto Rico. Credit Patrycja Makowska
Michałów Stud has long been world-renowned for its glorious grey mares, ethereal white beauties of beguiling femininity and abundant broody goodness that were the speciality of the unparalleled breeding genius of founding Director Ignacy Jaworowski. Palmira will forever be affectionately remembered as one of the all-time greats among these meritorious matrons, one whose indomitable spirit and world-class excellence will be exceedingly missed not only in Poland, but the world over.
Palmira. Credit Fotograf Mattsson
Farewell, Palmira. May the memory of your brilliance in the show-ring and your confident maternity at Michałów forever endure in our hearts, and may your descendants continue to magnify your luminescence for generations to come.
Palmira Show Achievements
2003 | Champion Senior Mare – International Championships, Poznan, Poland
2003 | Reserve Champion Senior Mare – World Championships, Paris, France
2004 | Champion Senior Mare and Best in Show – All-Poland Arabian Horse Show, Bełżyce, Poland
2004 | Champion Senior Mare – International Arabian Horse Show, Falborek, Poland
2005 | Reserve Champion Senior Mare ¬– All-Poland Arabian Horse Show, Bełżyce, Poland
2006 | Top Ten Champion Senior Mare – World Championships, Paris, France
2007 | Champion Senior Mare and Best in Show – Polish National Championships, Janów Podlaski, Poland
2007 | Champion Senior Mare and Highest Scoring Horse – All Nations Cup, Aachen, Germany
2007 | Top Five Champion Senior Mare – European Championships, Verona, Italy
2007 | Top Ten Champion Senior Mare – World Championships, Paris, France
2010 | Top Five Champion Senior Mare – International Arabian Horse Show, Wels, Austria
Palmira. Credit Fotograf Mattsson