A rare and exclusive breed, the Spanish-Norman blends the genes of the Andalusian of Spain and the Percheron of France to re-create the phenotype of the courageous horse that thundered across the battlefields of Europe. These were the noble horses, bred for courage, strength and stamina that left an indelible imprint on the history of the western world.
Research shows that early Spanish horses influenced the development of the now lost Norman horses of medieval France. Norman horses infused with Barb blood contributed to the equine type that would eventually come to be known as Percheron, after the Les Perches region of France. Both the horses of Andalusia and Normandy possessed an infusion of Barb blood from the Moorish invasions. Blood typing studies by Dr. E. Gus Cothran of the University of Kentucky, have located similar genetic markers in both breeds. With their common oriental ancestry, breeding Andalusians to Percherons produces offspring approximating the type of the old Norman horse, prized for carrying the knights to victory centuries ago.
Allan and Linda Osterman Hamid of Hamid Hill Farm, Ltd., Woodbury, Connecticut founded the Spanish-Norman Horse Registry in 1991 to record the pedigrees of this unique breed.
A versatile sporthorse, the Spanish-Norman physically embodies the heritage of its noble ancestors. From the regal Andalusian comes its elegant beauty, boldness and natural collection. From the Percheron comes its strength, size and bone density. Endowed with the unique combination of presence and docility, the modern Spanish-Norman is 15.3 to 17 hands and is predominately gray with some bays and blacks. Physical characteristics of this athletic breed are large expressive eyes; long graceful necks; laid back shoulders that blend smoothly into short backs; strong hindquarters; and sturdy feet and legs. They are bred to move freely from the shoulder with elastic, fluid movement, featuring engagement and elevation with extension. Spanish-Normans have the potential to excel in a variety of equine disciplines including jumping, eventing, dressage and driving. They perform in medieval games and historical re-enactments, are also excellent pleasure, parade and exhibition horses.
Since Spanish-Normans carry at least 50% Andalusian blood, they can be dual registered as Half-Andalusians with the International Andalusian and Lusitano Horse Association and are eligible to compete as such in shows sponsored by I.A.L.H.A. Percheron mares selected for this breed must be registered with the Percheron Association of America, the Canadian Percheron Association or the Société Hippique Percheronne de France.
An outstanding representative, and ambassador of the Spanish-Norman breed, is the Hamid Hill Farm, Ltd., 1992 stallion, Romántico H.H.F., 16.1h, gray, sired by the late Embajador IX, imported from Spain. The legendary Andalusian Embajador IX, owned by Linda and Allan Hamid, was the first foundation sire of the Spanish-Norman Registry, Inc., with his son Embajador XI as the second sire.
Hamid Hill Farm’s Embajador XI, the 1996 and 1997 Breyer model horse, representing the Andalusian breed, is trained and exhibited in classical dressage by the gifted haute-ecole rider, Bettina Drummond. Following the precepts of her mentor, the renowned Master Nuno Oliveira of Portugal, Ms. Drummond is the sole individual in the United States licensed to represent the Oliveira School. Performing together, Bettina Drummond and Embajador XI, project an image of beauty, grace and harmony; the perfect combination of artistry, elegance and style, reflecting the principles of lightness and collection, important attributes of classical art.
The Spanish-Norman Horse Registry sponsors an Annual Highpoint Award. Competition in all disciplines, presentations at horse shows and fairs, as well as participation in exhibitions, medieval games, parades, clinics, or any other equine related event qualifies! For more info on the High Point Award and to view the list of winners go HERE!