Classic Andalusian Stallion
1988 – 2000
The equestrian community and the Andalusian breed has lost one of it’s finest ambassadors.
On Saturday, April 29, 2000, Hamid Hill Farm’s twelve year old Andalusian stallion, Embajador XI and his classical dressage trainer Bettina Drummond enjoyed a beautiful ride together. At the hilltop arena, basking in the sun of the glorious spring day, they harmoniously performed their classic piaffers, passage and pirouettes. With the wind blowing in their faces, they shared what was to be a last fleeting moment of pure joy.
On Sunday, April 30, Linda and Allan Hamid’s beloved Andalusian stallion Embajador XI,. passed away. Like the candle in the wind, his fragile flame was extinguished forever. Two years prior, surgery had saved him from his rare form of colic, but this time, it was not to be…
Embajador XI was the Hamid’s purebred pride and joy, the first-born son of their imported Spanish stallion Embajador IX and lovely mare, Bandolera.
Embajador is the Spanish word for ambassador. Embajador XI was the perfect ‘Ambassador’ of the Andalusian, as he embodied all the attributes of the breed: classic beauty, courage, natural collection, lightness, temperament and nobility. Linda Hamid comments that “Embajador XI was a living symbol of the partnership of horse and rider. With Embajador XI and Bettina, there was a sense of oneness. they projected an image of grace, artistry and harmony.”
Embajador XI was honored to be selected as a Breyer horse model representing the Andalusian breed. The likeness if the dapple-gray Andalusian in a classical pose was re-created in a traditional size model with his name, Embajador XI, on the Breyer box and sold internationally in 1996 and 1997. Collectors loved seeing the Breyer model in person. Allan Hamid fondly recalls what happened after Embajador XI and Bettina’s performances:
“Children would come up and ask if they could touch him or kiss him. Embajador seems to like their gentle caresses. At one charity benefit on behalf of Cystic Fibrosis, children and adults lined up to have their pictures taken with the sweet stallion. It was truly heart-warming to see.”
In Spanish attire, Bettina and Embajador XI presented classical exhibitions at the Greenwich Polo Club and always featured Embajador’s signature ‘levade’. Even polo players were impressed at the end, as Bettina and Embajador charged across the field at full gallop to the William Tell Overture.
The strong bond between Embajador XI and Bettina was unique and rare. Her deep feelings for the stallion can only be expressed in her own words.
“Embajador’s answer, no matter what I did or tried to change in order to make him feel right was always the same: he smiled at me. He smiled with his whole being, from his ears always eagerly forward, to his tail happily swaying. He embodied what I had always known I loved in Iberian horses: their joy in sharing. How could one not match that devotion with every fiber of one’s talent and being? Today I had a moment of hesitation, putting his saddle on his brother’s back, but I did it because his special, loving kindness needed to go on and be shared by becoming a part of all my efforts with the horses in the barn he had left.
“His story has been heard, and its tale is one of loving glances, quiet effort and unconditional support. We weave magic with horses, and the magic in this little horse was in the greatness of his heart. The special memory of the pleasure we shared in dancing together will only be equaled by the enormity of the privilege it was to be known by him.”
Embajador XI loved and was loved.