My path crossed with Jim Andreson when he had a successful nightclub in Philadelphia and I was a singer. But, it was the love of Arabian horses that kept our friendship going and later merged our stables.
Jim started his horse-breeding program well over fifty years ago in North Dakota, but it was those Philadelphia years that really made the difference for him. Being a tall man (well over 6 feet) he wanted "more daylight" under his horses, and he was shopping for the right stallion. He was in Florida checking out some possibilities, when he noticed a young Arabian stallion being tacked up for a breeze on the track. That young stallion was a champion in several European countries and he had just made a spectacular impression at the Salon du Cheval in Paris. He was masculine and powerful (standing a documented 16.2 Hands) and he would change the look of Selket Arabians forever. The stallion's name was *Furno Khamal.
Jim went back to Philadelphia and pulled together an offer for Khamal, whose owner in Holland laughed it off and said, "That couldn't even buy one of Khamal's legs!" (Jim's offer was a quarter million dollars). But, the following year, an agreement was reached and Khamal, along with several important mares, belonged to Jim.
Over the years, there were many Arabian horse lovers who discovered the power and magnificence of *Furno Khamal. Being a designer at heart, Jim traveled the world for mares that were right for his stallion. They came from Germany, Russia, Poland, Canada and the U.S. They were the dams of national champions in halter, performance and racing. His efforts paid off. Jim Andreson and Selket Arabians had beautiful Arabian racehorses who could win in the halter ring as well.
Today, all of the Selket Arabians are related to *Furno Khamal and the mares Jim found for him. Our collection of Khamal daughters is the largest in the world, and, among our herd are their offspring to Marwan Al Shaqab, Ghazal al Shaqab, Da Vinci FM, Selket Marquis and a few others. Our Khamal son, Selket Advocate (out of an Aswan daughter and owned by Jim's dear and loving friend, Kelly Ordway) is here with us. Selket Angelo, a Khamal grandson, was one of Jim's special favorites and now belongs to Jan Campbell of Echo Lane Farms. Selket Mystery (belonging to Amy Pahl in New York) is a Sport Horse stallion of which we are very proud, but it is Selket Louchiano who became a real ambassador for the breed when he was featured in our TV documentary (Fate of the Stallion) and was seen on millions of TV screens across the country and abroad. A brief scene of Jim playing with Louchiano in the film is wonderful to see.
Jim admired and loved Russian-blooded Arabians, and infusing the right kind of Russian blood into his horses was one of his secrets. With that in mind, he always had Russian-blooded Arabians available.
Thank you, Jim, for your guidance in the Arabian horse industry and for everything you taught me. I hope you are racing your chariot across the desert sands, adorned in gold, fighting for the kind of world we believe is possible. Being your partner was the greatest adventure of my life ... and I hope you will always be smiling.
On With The Show!
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