Equiborn K.A. Grey stallion, 2012. (QR Marc / Espadrilla) Breeder: Mr. Paul Gheysens, Belgium. Owner: Budhens Stud. Strain: Not Recorded (Milordka, 1816)
Citation by Susanne Bösche
Equiborn KA provided a brilliant end to 2023, with the judging team unanimously choosing the grey stallion at the European Championships in Italy. To the sound of the Belgian anthem, the Budhan-De Haes family of Budhen’s Stud received the prize of honour for the Gold Champion Senior Stallion.
This victory was the highlight of an outstanding career that began in 2012 when Equiborn KA was born at Knocke Arabians Stud, owned by Paul and Ria Gheysens. His sire is the World Champion QR Marc (Marwan Al Shaqab x Swete Dreams), and his dam, Espadrilla, is not only one of the most remarkable mares from Michalow’s breeding programme, but she also brings with her the influence and qualities of Monogramm and Emigracja, all found in Equiborn KA.
Of course, a breeder wants to present such a good, young stallion to the world. That’s why Equiborn’s show career began as a yearling, and his debut was a success, starting with Silver Champion and Best Belgium Horse at the West Coast Cup, followed by the All Nations Cup, a show with strong competition, especially in the yearling classes. Here, Equiborn KA took second in his class.
At yearling age, a few weeks of development make a difference; enough so for the grey horse to finish 2013 as Silver World Champion Yearling Colt in wintry Paris. And Equiborn KA continued to impress as a two-year-old; on the beach in Menton, judges awarded him Bronze Champion, and he would win Silver again in the 2015 World Championships in the junior class.
Again proving his breeder correct, Equiborn KA celebrated his first major success as a senior on French soil. At just four years old, the grey stallion impressed at the Breeders’ Cup in Chantilly, taking the title of unanimous Gold Champion and Best Male of the Show. By 2017, he was Bronze World Champion in Paris, bested only by Wadee Al Shaqab and Equator.
The logical next step being world domination, Equiborn KA left Europe to conquer the Arabian scene in the USA under the guidance of international top trainer David Boggs of the Midwest Training Centre, opening up new prospects for the QR Marc son.
Boggs has trained and shown many great horses in his decades-long career. There were plenty of qualities that he really liked about the grey horse from Belgium. “He has so many wonderful traits: big, beautiful eyes, great ears, correct conformation, a well laid-back shoulder, a naturally high tail set and great movement,” Boggs said once and added, “He should get 20’s for movement!”
Equiborn KA crowned his 2019 stay in the USA with two remarkable titles, waving the flag for excellent Arabian horse breeding in Belgium. He won the championship in his class at the Arabian Breeders World Cup and was also honoured as Bronze Supreme Champion Senior Stallion, while in Scottsdale at one of the most remarkable and competitive shows in the U.S. Arabian world, Equiborn KA won Arabian Breeder Finals Gold Champion.
After returning to European soil, the Budhan-De Haes family decided to send Equiborn KA back into the ring in 2023. Eleven years young, gleaming white, elegant, and full of tips, Equiborn KA was about to appear before the international judges again.
At the All Nations Cup in September, a highlight of the show year, Equiborn KA was awarded 2023 Bronze Champion Stallion. From there, he and his entourage travelled to Italy to compete for precious metal in the European Championships; successfully, as mentioned at the beginning.
Of course, it is not only his personal qualities and show titles that determine the value of a stallion. What advertises a stallion best above all, is good progeny. The Budhan-De Haes family not only enjoys the beauty of Equiborn KA, but they also appreciate his son Apollo KA (x Aria Athena). Born in 2018, this gelding has already won several important championships, including a highlight of his show career so far, 2023 All Nations Cup Silver Champion Gelding.
Other remarkable Equiborn foals of note, are the Knocke Arabians bred and owned son Poseidon KA (x Primera Marc), who as a yearling was named European Bronze Champion, and Melodina KA (x FS Magnums Madonna), a beautiful daughter who earned Gold Champion Junior Filly at the Nordic Open in Denmark in 2018.
Equiborn KA is without a doubt, an ambassador for Belgium Arabian horse breeding, thanks to his breed type, attitude, character, and his many show successes and good offspring. “We love our big boy, Equiborn,” says the Budhan-De Haes family. “He is always so sweet and is always very proud when he enters the arena. He has a beautiful head and has good legs, and for sure, type. We are very proud and honoured that Equiborn received the WAHO Trophy this year after his European Gold medal in Italy and his Bronze medal in Aachen in 2023. We are excited for the future with him.”
An overview of Equiborn’s KA Championship titles:
2023 Gold European Champion Stallion
2023 Bronze All Nations Cup Champion Stallion
2019 Arabian Breeder Finals Gold Champion Stallion, Scottsdale, USA
2019 Arabian Breeders World Cup Class Champion and Bronze Supreme Champion Senior Stallion
2017 Paris Bronze World Champion Stallion
2016 Breeders Cup Chantilly Unanimous Gold Champion Senior Stallion + Best Male of the Show
2015 Paris Silver World Champion Junior Colt
2014 Menton Bronze Champion Junior Colt
2013 Paris Silver World Champion Yearling Colt