My big bay, earned his name the day he was born, as you might imagine. Born to be a “show-off” some say, he made his debut on February 14, in front of an adoring group of immediate “fans”, who even toasted his long life with champagne. At four months, he proved himself to be a “quick-study” of his his mama: no obstacle too small. Each in turn jumped a 4’6” fence seeking to be reunited the very day he was weaned! Even today, that same quick mind shows up in training, and the determination shows up in the show ring.
Valentine’s dam is Sofia Car (a full sister to Quincy Car), but Valentine’s sire remained an unsolved mystery for years. (Yes, “this sort of thing” happens, even to experienced breeders, but THAT is another story.) Valentine had indeed been sired under cover of darkness one night, by a very able bodied colt, not yet two years of age. But… which one of the eligible three? All was not immediately forgiven, but his jumping prowess mandates the mystery be solved by DNA testing. Just as we expected: both dam and sire were descendants of the original horses my father
imported from France in 1988, hence…his jumping is in the genes.
Today, Valentine is still all of the above: a show-off, a barn favorite, a quick study, a legitimate heir, and even a bit of a celebrity since he consistently brings home the ribbons. Best of all, Valentine’s story is stilla work in progress. He’s right on schedule for full grand prix eligibility and careful, too, rarely bringing down a rail as long as we warm him up over something blue which looks like a water jump! He covers a lot of ground very quickly without being reckless, so time faults are rarely a problem, either. In short, I’m trusting him to go the distance, and take me with him.