our Arieana Notebook: A desert-bred stallion and the original
horse on one of
our failing CMK sire
lines, *Kismet, compiled an impressive record of
Arabian racing achievements in his lifetime. Bred by the Montefiq
Shammar and foaled in the desert in 1877, *Kismet was purchased in Arabia as a five-year old and
then taken to Bombay
in 1882 by his new owner Abdur Rhaman, a famous and highly regarded Indian horse dealer who, in turn, sold him
there to Lieutenant R.S. Broadwood of the British 12th Royal Lancers.
Horseracing was an extremely popular sport during the British
colonization period in India,
and *Kismet was rated one of the best Arabian race horses during those times. In 1883-'84 he swept almost everything before him;
his total winnings for those two seasons in India amounted to £30,000
(equivalent then to $150,000) ~ an enormous amount of money in those days.
Race Wins in India
July 12, 1883, the Mysore Cup, 1 1/4 miles, carrying 139 lbs.
July 14, 1883, the Mysore Purse, 1 1/2 miles, carrying 134 lbs.
July 19, 1883, Aga Kahn's Purse, 1 1/2 miles, carrying 134 lbs.
September 8, 1883, Aga Kahn's Plate, 1 1/4 miles, carrying 126 lbs.
September 11, 1883, Aga Kahn's Purse, 1 3/4 miles, carrying 131 lbs.
Nov. 22, 1883, Deccan Handicap, 1 1/2 miles, carrying 119 lbs.
February 12, 1884, The Derby, 1 1/2 miles, carrying 136 lbs.
February 14, 1884, Aga Kahn's Purse, 1 1/2 miles, carrying 133 lbs.
after this last race Lieutenant Broadwood shipped *Kismet to England.
After a very long and extremely rough sea voyage, *Kismet landed in the latter part of
April 1884, and so confident was his owner of this horse's prowess, that he matched him to run
at Newmarket in July against the famous Asil, without proper conditioning and
training. The younger Asil beat him in this race for one of only
two times he managed do so in *Kismet's
entire racing career. After that July race, *Kismet was sold to Colonel R.D.
Cunyngham V.C. (Victoria
Cross), and racing under the colors of his new owner, *Kismet
twice afterwards turned the tables on Asil.
In 1885 *Kismet was ridden at Newmarket by Fred Archer, who
rode the Derby winner five different times, and he pronounced *Kismet
the gamest horse he ever rode and that he had the most spring of any horse he
had ever ridden. Such also was the opinion of Charles Wood, who
rode him that following year in his races against Asil at Newmarket and Sandown Park; both
these races were for two miles, and *Kismet won "hands down,"
carrying 126 pounds.
After that he was
bought by Honorable John Corbett, Member of the Parliament, who used him as a saddle horse, and
Corbett in turn sold him to the Reverend Francis Furse Vidal in the Spring of 1890.
Now at thirteen years old, *Kismet had his first opportunity to sire
purebred Arabians, but Vidal used him sparingly at stud: his only four
purebred registered foals in Great Britain
were *Nimr (out of *Nazli) and Havilah (out of
Hagar) in 1891, and *Garaveen (out of Kushdil) and Kantaka II (out of Sultana) in 1892.
to The United States
In the Autumn of 1891, Vidal entered into a lease agreement with Mr. Randolph Huntington, of Oyster Bay, Long
Island, New York, at a price of £200 per annum plus insurance and transportation
costs and with the agreement that *Kismet be limited to breeding
20 mares a year and that he not be sold while in the United States. After a long and stormy passage *Kismet
reached New York on the steamship SS Canada
on November 11, 1891, only to die two hours after landing, of pleuro-pneumonia
contracted on the voyage.
So disappointed was Huntington that he returned to Vidal and negotiated
with him for *Kismet's two sons *Nimr and
on the voyage this time
by Vidal himself, these two stallions arrived in New York along with *Nimr's dam
*Nazli in the Spring of 1893. Soon after the horses' arrival, Spencer Borden went
to Huntington's Oyster Bay stud to inspect them. He thought *Nimr
the best two year old he had ever seen and that he was
prepared to give Huntington his entire 200 head of horses for the mare *Nazli." (Blunt, p. 416)
Today at Arieana Arabians we value the
influence for his heart, speed, and stamina as we joyously find his
name weaving in
and out throughout the mid-pedigrees of our CMK horses linebred on
the incomparable stallion Rahas (Gulastra
~Suzi Morris (Updated 06/29/2012)
Borden, Spencer. The Arab Horse. Doubleday, Page & Company,
New York. 1906. pp 74-76
Blunt, Lady Anne. Journals and Correspondence 1878-1917.
Edited by Rosemary Archer and James Fleming. Alexander Hariot & Co.
Ltd. Cheltenham, Glouscestershire, England. 1986. pp 413-416.
Mulder, Carol June
Woodbridge. Imported Foundation Stock of North American Arabian
Horses. Volume 2 (Revised Edition). Borden Publishing Company,
Los Angeles, California. 1993. pp. 218-223.