Memories of LAMAAN
by Marci de la
Torre © 2003
(Reprinted with permission from Marci de la Torre's post to the ArabianPreservation Mailing List
August 30, 2003)
It is such a small world and this post brought back many memories of
happy times with my Lamaan (Zadir x Rabika by Rabiyas), full brother to Zabika.
Lamaan was born in 1959 (Zabika in 1961) and was sold by Cal Poly to a
Doctor in Mexico when he was just a baby. He was approx 15 hands,
chestnut, blaze & 4 tall stockings. Probably would be considered a
sabino today. Lamaan was slated to be a breeding stallion for the doctor.
However, fate had different ideas.
Lamaan was trained for 4 years as a reining horse on the doctor's ranch
and excelled. (Note: In Mexico a well-trained "caballo de rienda"óreining
horse has had much dressage training. His cues are heavily off the leg and
they use extremely light contact with the mouth. On a finished horse, a
rider can set a horse into a sliding stop by just shifting their weight.
Then they can back him the length of the arena with the reins dropped over
the saddle horn, just using your legs). I tell you this because this is
how Lamaan was trained.
courtesy of Marci de la Torre
He came to the attention of our friends, the
Vergara-Ochoa brothers in Guadalajara. Alfonzo and his brother, "Loli",
fought the bulls Portuguese style, from horseback - they do not kill the
bull, only place the banderillas. They were in partnership with
Conchita Cintron, a very famous lady bull fighter from Portugal. She came
from Portugal to their ranch each year and trained horses for the Vergara-Ochoa
brothers to ride, as well as trained them in the Portuguese
"art" of bullfighting. They negotiated the purchase of Lamaan
from the doctor put him in further training at their ranch - another 4
years which amounted largely to dressage training. Lamaan again excelled!
One day, when he was out in his paddock, one of the bulls broke through
the fence and hooked Lamaan in the testicles, very effectively castrating
His future as a breeding stallion gone and with Lamaan now approaching
11 years old with the start of Ringbone, the Vergara-Ochoa brother came to
us to buy a stallion. They offered Lamaan to us as a partial trade against
the purchase price. So, in 1968 Lamaan came back to California. I remember
this so well because we got stuck in the quarantine barn at Caliente Race
Track, Tiajuana, Mexico, for 30+ days. They locked him into a new
quarantine barn that had not passed inspection by the State of Calif. The
day we went down to finally pick him up, they drenched him with some sort
of bug spray (out of a hose) as a parting shot. Before putting a very
bedraggled Lamaan in the trailer, I let him free walk and trot on the end
of a lunge line to work out some kinks. Remember, he had been locked in
that stall for more than 30 days. When he picked up the trot, it was big.
bold, ground covering and simply took my breath away. I was looking at a
natural, God-given Park Horse.
When I got him home, I started to work him
in the cutback saddle. With all the exquisite training he had had, he
collected so beautifully. That year, 1968, he was shown at one show at
Pomona (his entire show horse career). My friend, George Chavez, showed
him since I was pregnant at the time. We showed in the Park Horse class,
competing against and beating the wonderful *Blue Mantle. That was
Lamaan's only show and *Blue Mantle went on to be the US Nat'l Champ Park
Horse that year.
LAMAAN (1968 with George Chavez)
Photo courtesy of Marci
de la Torre
Lamaan was my trail horse and my best friend. He taught my daughter,
Lisa, how to ride. My ex-husband used him in his trick-roping exhibitions.
He loved life and was game for any endeavor you asked of him. Lamaan was
the best trained horse I have ever ridden and he has been the yardstick
that, so far, I have been unable to duplicate. Backing him the length of
the arena without using my hands was something I used to love to show
people (say "unbelievers").
Thanks for the memories.
PEGASUS PARK ARABIANS
P.S. Eons ago I was invited to spend a week in Guadalajara, riding with
Conchita Cintron. To ride, literally, with "no hands" while your
horse maneuvers around a big bull at, sometimes, great speeds and agility,
is an experience and a half. The words "partnership" and
"trust" are totally redefined. (08/30/03)