07 June, 2011


The colt moved effortlessly around the yard, his hind feet easily over-stepping the prints left by his front hoofs. He wasn't even breathing hard and yet, he seemed to cover a lot of ground, his high set tail flying in the wind, like an exclamaion point, used at the end of the sentence for emphasis. The colt had a natural brilliance, which charmed the young boy who had been intently watching him.  "What did Mr. Babson call these horses?" he asked himself.  He noticed the colt's nostrils, which had opened to an extraordinary large size and yet remained so soft looking, so delicate and thin like the oniony paper sitting in the office typewriter and suddenly, he remembered, "Oh yes! Drinkers of the Wind." Now, he understood why that particular description was used for these horses. The colt, joyful, his happy spirit infecting not only the boy but everyone standing along side the corral, watching the charismatic colt at play. Today was a special day and the boy was with his parents, who were looking for a colt to buy for their son.  The boy had spent the last few weeks in pained anxiety, waiting for this day to arrive. It was like Christmas. With each breath he took, the colt appeared revitalized and re-energized, as if he could move like this forever, without ever tiring. The boy studied the colt's substantial but elegant  body. He liked the graceful, flowing circular lines that formed his silhouette. He admired the well-muscled hindquarter; which was round, plump and full, and suddenly he was thinking of one of the balls that he liked to kick around in the school yard with the other boys, during recess. The colt's hocks were elastic, allowing the horse to really reach up, to drive himself  forward, using the muscling in his relaxed, rounded back. The boy was impressed and wondered what it would feel like to be astride the colt's back, as the world whizzed by him. He looked forward to the many adventures he would have, with this colt as his companion. His eyes drifted towards the front end of the colt, to a well-muscled shoulder with a prominent wither. The colt's  muscles rippled with every stride he took, allowing him to reach out, grabbing large chunks of ground as he flew by the spot where the boy was standing. His movement was unrestricted, so beautiful, so free. His neck was long and slender, gracefully arching into his lovely chiseled head with a cheekbone which reminded the boy of the half-moon he saw in the sky last night. His eyes were large and black and watched the boy carefully. The colt wondered who this boy was and why was he looking at him so intently. He liked the boy and wished he would come in with him to play. The boy could not take his eyes off of him, as he had never seen a horse which looked and moved like this colt. The boy was tingling in excitement, all the way down to his toes. "I really want him Mom" he blurted out desperately and continued, "please say that you will buy him for me."

The colt's sire had come to America from Egypt, from the stud of a famous Prince. His dam was bred in Riyadh, in an area of Saudi Arabia known as the Nejd and had traveled to England first, then to Canada, where Henry Babson had first laid eyes on her, falling completely in love with her. He brought her home to Illinois, as a bride for his beloved *Fadl, the famous Prince's horse. Her name was Tarfa back then and this remarkable colt was one of her last sons. *Turfa was famous for her electrifying movement, which she passed onto all of her progeny but what he really loved about her, was how much she loved all people. She looked for any opportunity to get close to a human being and rest her beautiful head on their shoulder, as she let out a very contented sigh, letting everyone know that all was good with the world. She was everything he had imagined a Bedouin horse to look like and act like. And here he was today, to see her charming colt who had been named Fa-Turf. The son of *Fadl and *Turfa. What plans he had for his colt and for the champion get he would sire. What adventures they would share! In that small moment, the boy made a very big promise, a pact with the earth, the sky and all who would listen. He would do everything possible to preserve the blood of *Turfa, so that other little boys like him, could one day stand in awe of these beautiful horses like he had and dream about flying across the sand, on the back of a Drinker of the Wind...a Turfa...of his very own.

Fa-Turf was a 1952 grey stallion sired by *Fadl (Ibn Rabdan x Mahroussa) and out of the Sa'ud mare, *Turfa. Bred and raised at the Babson Farm, he was  purchased by Dr. Keith Krausnick of Shar-Char Farm, as a sire for his breeding program. He sired 51 horses, of which 15 daughters and 8 sons were Al Khamsa-recognized. His son Fa Raad (out of the Ibn Fadl daughter Raada) was an important sire for Darrell Perdue of Rudalaro Ranch in Lamar, Colorado

Dedicated to the memory of a really great mare...*Turfa. She continues to live in our hearts and our minds, inspiring us with her great quality. She was the prize of the desert.



Jacquie Peregoy said...

Hello Ralph, I truly appreciate your article on Fa-Turf, thank you once again.
An important announcement for the Babson Turfa horses - there are now two Babson Turfa breeders dedicated to the preservation of this important group. Pamela Klein of The Weyr Arabians now has NAHR Serr Faraad, a very generous gift from Anne and Bernie Ness, and four beautiful Babson Turfa mares to be bred. Ross Miller in Minnesota has the stallion NAHR Serr Nebah and three high percentage Babson Turfa mares to begin his program.
I have recently completed a list of breeding age Babson Turfa horses. Too many have been lost with papers not transferred. I am very grateful for the efforts of Pamela and Ross, and for the generosity of those that are assisting in this project.
Jacquie Peregoy

Pameladragon said...

Ralph, thank you so much for this informative article about Fa-Turf. I see the *Turfa influence in all my B/T horses but it is much stronger the higher the *Turfa percentage. I am especially taken with NAHR Serr Faraad, who is a perfect gentleman and extremely affectionate. I am very much looking forward to his first foal crop in 2012!

Pamela Klein
The Weyr
Appomattox, VA