Breeder: Stadnina Koni Janów Podlaski


Nobody expected the 46th Pride of Poland auction in 2015 to be historical due to €4,500,000 obtained for the sold horses and, first of all, due to the price obtained by grey Pepita from Janów – €1,400,000.


Pepita was born on 29 January 2005. In 2008, she ran on Partynice racecourse in Wrocław on ranges 2000 metres (5 times), 1800 m (once) and 1600 m (once), and her scores in these 7 starts were as follows: she won once, was placed the second once, the third – once, and the fourth – three times. As you see, the racing did not impair her beauty and confirmed the philosophy that Polish Arabian horse must be beautiful and brave Her dimensions are 150 – 176 – 18.75. In 2010, she was placed the fourth at National Show in Janów but in 2014, she won the mare class and became the Older Mares Champion and the best horse of the show – Best in Show.


Pepita is a daughter of grey Ekstern, the multichampion from Michałów, that won all shows participated. In 2000, he became the Older Stallions National Champion of Poland, the Champion of Nations Cup in Aachen, the European Champion and the World Champion. He has also a WAHO trophy granted in 2008 to him as an outstanding representative of pure bred Arab of Polish breeding.

Pepita’s dam – the beautiful fleabitten grey Pepesza – is a daughter of the legendary Eukaliptus. She was born on 4th February 1993 and died on 6th January 2018. She was sold at the auction in Janów in 2006 for €135,000. Her photo with the stable cat was on the cover of the auction catalogue. After sale, the auctioneer said the price included also this cat. Nobody knows if he went with Pepesza to Hennessy Arabians in Florida. Pepesza bewitched with her type, swan’s neck, beautiful head and movement. She left the following offspring in Janów: daughters Polifonia, Pernilla, Pensacola and Pepita; sons Perseusz and Pegasus.

Pepita, the legendary mare from Janów Stud Farm, still provides reasons for pride and satisfaction to her breeders. We hope that both she and her offspring will add many positive experiences and joy.

Read more…

Author: Jerzy Dudała

Click the links below to go to the Polish Digital Equestrian Library (will open in a new tab):

„PEPITA” (2020) – Jerzy Dudała


Breeder: Stadnina Koni Wojcieszków, Maria, hr. Plater-Zyberk

xo grey (Rittersporn – Jordi / Shagya X-3) born on 02/03/1937,
bred at Wojcieszków Stud Farm

You can also read about Ramses on the Wojcieszków website.

Dr. Stanisław Deskur writes on Polish stallion of century, the initiator of the most outstanding breeding line of sports horses in Germany, as follows:

Ramzes was bred in Wojcieszków Stud Farm and purchased by the Stallion’s Depot in Janów Podlaski in early 1940. At that time, nothing indicated that this entire would prove a stallion of century in future and his progeniture would move up in the world at the most considerable equestrian competitions. Thanks to records of the director of the depot in Janów Podlaski, Tadeusz Marchowiecki Eng., (Wojcieszków Stud Farm was in his action area), we know Ramzes’s history beginning from a foal.

Ramzes’s sire was Rittersporn, English Thoroughbred born in Belgium, that was successful steeple-chase racehorse in Germany. Within the war reparations, Rittersporn came to Poland, to the Stallion’s Depot in Janów Podlaski. He was descended from the well-known stallion Le Sancy that transferred jumping accomplishments.

Rittersporn, while being at copulatory point in Łabunie near Zamość, gave 8 very good competition horses in 1926 and 1927 and attain excellent renown, so many cavalry officers wished to have a saddle-horse by this stallion. Thereby, young horses by Rittersporn sold like hot cakes to army. However, the lists of horses registered by Polish Equestrian Association, published in the interwar period, do not indicate any other horses by Rittersporn with more considerable sports successes – except for the mentioned eight. Also, in breeding, this stallion’s offspring was not conspicuous. His 3 sons were purchased by Stallion’s Depots; one of them was culled after two copulatory seasons. Rittersporn, since 1930s and probably for the rest of his life, stood at Wojcieszków Stud Farm (district Łuków). This stud farm included about 30 dams and belonged to Maria Zyberk-Plater that – according to director Marchowiecki – “had no knowledge of horses but she liked them very much and fed them well”. As example of Ramzes shows, in some cases these attributes of the owner-breeder could ensure success.

During auction at the Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski in 1929, Maria Plater bought a one year’s filly, Jordi, culled by the stud farm, so, according to local specialists’ opinion, she did not promise that would be a good dam in future.

Jordi had the very good origin. Her grandmother, Astarte, was born at well-known Austrian Radowce Stud Farm (at present in Romania) and according to nomenclature in force at that place, her original name was 264 Amurath-8. Jordi’s pedigree (see: the enclosed Ramzes’s pedigree) was saturated with oriental blood. She came from the family designated in Radowce with Roman numeral III, going back as far as to beginning of nineteenth century. Three-year-old Jordi was included to dams in Wojcieszków. However unhappily, Jordi broke her front leg. Due to state of the art of that time, the mare was threatened to be put to death but her owner forbade this.

The mare was hanged on belts and a vet set her leg with wooden splints. Its leg healed up but it was crooked. The mare was lame and could not be used anywhere else beyond breeding. Then a small wooden stable was built in Wojcieszków, with a grassy paddock, where Jordi lived with her following foals from spring to late autumn. Her third foal was Ramzes. Director Marchowiecki often visited Wojcieszków on business and observed little Ramzes that seemed to be a stallion for breeding in future. Unfortunately, little Ramzes was persecuted by the familial bad luck. In early spring 1938, well-developed, grown and always defiant Ramzes fell over backward while playing with his age-mates and he couldn’t get up for several days. Also, in this case, Maria Plater rejected a suggestion to put Ramzes to death. Thanks to massages and warm compresses applied on loins for several days, Ramzes started getting up and standing shakily. Then as if he learnt to go for a long time. Nevertheless, his condition rallied and in summer 1939, uninitiated people didn’t notice any post-accident problems in Ramzes. Also, no complaints occurred later in Ramzes. As I mentioned before, Ramzes was bought for the Stallion’s Depot in Janów Podlaski in 1940. According to director Marchowiecki’s opinion, he presented a type of a good-looking Polish Anglo-Arab of height about 160 cm, grey with dark mane and tail, of clean head with expressive eyes, long neck, prominent withers, correct loins and long, well-muscled back. He had normal legs with a bit round front cannons. Ramzes’s movement was beyond reproach as he had the long and ambling walk, the energetic trot and the long canter covering a large area.

During all war period, Ramzes was sent to procreation points in neighbourhood of Kałuszyn in copulatory seasons. Every year after return from these points – as all young stallions in the Stallion’s Depot in Janów Podlaski – as a rule, he had to take part in hard hunting runs behind dogs in the field with many difficult obstacles. Ramzes was distinguished by good and precise jumps but he did not like water obstacles and this defect was transferred to some of his offspring. He had to be a good saddle horse, since he was constantly mounted during quadrilles by the head groom of that time and the director of stud farm in Janów Podlaski in future, Andrzej Krzyształowicz, Eng. Independently from this, Ramzes was trained in carriage driving and he was a part of Four-in-Hand team.

In July 1944, Ramzes with the whole Stallion’s Depot from Janów Podlaski was evacuated and reached Cleverhof L. Lubeck as his final stand. Upon termination of the war, the most of Polish breeding horses located in Germany were returned to Poland; several horses, especially talented in sport, were left in the area of West Germany to represent our breeding. Ramzes was among them. He was mounted then by lieutenant Bielecki.

When lieutenant Bielecki emigrated to Canada, Ramzes was bought by baron Clemens von Nagel-Doornick, the owner of the stud farm Vornholz (Westphalia) with about 30 dams. Baron von Nagel – as I mentioned in the previous “Zootechnic News” – was a commander of the stud farm in Racot during the war and, because he kept a civil tongue in his hand according to opinion of his Polish workers, he was allowed to deal with horse breeding after the war. His idea was to breed good horses, first of all for dressage and show jumping events, to ensure continuation of achievements of the interwar period to German horsemanship. As a son of the director of the stud farm in Beberbeck, he had opportunity to come to know these horses and decided to realize his plans based on them. He found few horses of Beberbeck blood that were left in Germany. He used the stallion Oxyd (Irrlehrer-Oxalis) and Hanoverian mares by Beberbeck stallions. He also used Polish stallion Zew bred by Jezierski from Worotniów, Łuck district). Zew was by English Thoroughbred stallion and the original Beberbeck mare.

In Vornholz, the first German after-war Olympic team was prepared to start in the dressage event in Helsinki in 1952; their horses were bred in this very stud farm according to the above-mentioned breeding concept. This team won the bronze medal. There were odds to send the same horses for Olympic Games in Stockholm in 1956 but one of horses became lame and was replaced with another one. This team also returned with the bronze medal and one of horses from Vornholz breeding won the bronze medal individually, too. The further Olympic successes of horses bred by baron von Nagel were impressive. In Tokyo in 1964, the FRG team was first in dressage. A member of this team was Remus that won the silver medal individually. In Mexico in 1968, the FRG team repeated the success from Tokyo and its member Mariano won the silver medal individually. In Munich in 1972, the gelding Robin was a member of FRG team that won the gold medal in show jumping. These three horses – Remus, Mariano and Robin are already the sons of Ramzes. During the first years of his stay in Vornholz, Ramzes started in show-jumping events under Brinckmann, the perfect German rider, and got quite good results on a national scale. Probably, baron von Nagel wanted to check his value in use. Ramzes ended his sports career in 1948 while breaking his leg during training. Surely, this was a bad omen because, as you can remember, his dam broke her leg, too and his sire Rittersporn broke his legs twice. In this case, baron von Nagel could be afraid of hereditary predispositions; fortunately, such cases didn’t occur in Ramzes’s offspring.

Breeding failures in Racot in the interwar period – trials to combine Hanoverian mares and Holstein stallions from Racot – could estrange for use of Ramzes in breeding; certainly, baron von Nagel knew these failures. Moreover, no cases are known in horse breeding history that a stallion having such a great infusion of Oriental blood in his pedigree like Ramzes could give a prominent in show jumping offspring. Therefore, baron von Nagel showed his great breeding intuition while appointing Ramzes as a leading sire in Vornholz. Ramzes stayed at his loose-box of the head stallion until his death in 1966. In opinion of German breeding circles, no other stallion, whether of local or foreign origin, achieved equally positive results with local mares like this Polish Anglo-Arab. Ramzes gave a numerous group of sports horses well-deserved in breeding, too. There was a period when each of well-known riders in FRG mounted a horse by this stallion. Radetzki and Raimond were these sons of Ramzes that were distinguished in breeding. Rembrandt, the great grandson’s son of the former, was described as an unequalled horse anent the movement dynamics. Under his young equestrienne Nicole Uphoff, he won individually and in a team the gold medals at two successive Olympic Games – in Seoul 1988 and in Barcelona 1992. This was a performance unrecorded in history of Olympic Games hitherto.

Whereas, Raimond’s son, Ramiro, is the sire of superb horses – jumpers. His daughter, Ratina-Z won the silver medal individually and the gold medal in the Dutch team at Olympic Games in Barcelona, 1992. Moreover, under the leading German rider, L. Beerbaum, she was placed first at the World Cup in Gothenburg, 1993. At the latest Olympic Games in Athens, Ramiro’s son, the perfect jumper stallion Royal Kaliber won the silver medal in the team and the bronze medal individually for U.S.A.

Author: Dr Stanisław Deskur
source: Horse breeding in Poland (VII) – Ramzes
“Zootechnic News” (no. 4/2004)

The licence granted by Dr Stanisław Deskur and Zootechnics Institute in Balice – Horse Breeding Department – for BoberTeam for the needs of the project Polish Equestrian Legends. Copyright reserved.

Click the links below to go to the Polish Digital Equestrian Library (will open in a new tab):

„Hodowla koni w Polsce (VI)” (2004) – Stanisław Deskur

Rodowód Ogiera Ramzes

red: English Thoroughbred horses
blue: Arabian horses and purebred horses
black: Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horses


Honorary Patron: Joanna Jaśkowiak, Member of the Parliament of the Republic of Poland

Sponsor: Ryszard Bober, Senator of the Republic of Poland

Guardian: prof. Jadwiga Rotnicka, Senator of the Republic of Poland

The countess has been remembered as a good woman and an unattainable landlady at Wojcieszków estate [1].


Maria Pia Elżbieta Apolonia Plater-Zyberk was born on 5th November 1872. She was the third of five children of Tadeusz Plater-Zyberk and Zofia Aleksandrowicz. She died on October 4, 1964 in Warsaw. She is buried in the Powązki Cemetery in the family tombs of the Plater-Zyberk family.

The countess’s father was an outstanding breeder and a farmer. He started horse breeding in Wojcieszków and his horses supplied military stables up to 1939.

In the interwar period, the Stud Farm in Wojcieszków had about 30 half-bred mares and stallions from the Stallion Depot of Janów Podlaski based there. Among others, the world famous stallion Ramzes was born in Wojcieszków.

In 1929, Maria Plater Zyberk bought a mare Jordi at auction at the Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski; the grey mare Jordi was born in 1928 by Schagya out of Demeter by Bakszysz oo out of Astarte by Amurath (Weil) out of Dahoman XII. Three years old Jordi was included into dams in Wojcieszków.

Ramzes’s father, English thoroughbred Rittersporn, that had good results in steeple-chase in Germany, stayed and mated (probably for life) at the Stud Farm Wojcieszków since 1930 (district Łuków).

In 1937, dam Jordi gave birth to a colt named Ramzes.

In early January 1940, German invaders started reconstruction of the stud farm and the stallions’ depot in Janów Podlaski. The dozen or so young stallions saved at the training institution in Kozienice were brought; in addition, stallions from East Prussia arrived. Tadeusz Marchowiecki remembers in his article “Ramzes”:
“I took advantage of the fact that further stallions were sought to purchase and I informed Gustaw Rau about four Rittersporn’s sons in Wojcieszków. All stallions were bought for PLN 20 thousand.” [2]

The countess made also a contribution to foundation of the parish Polish Young Women Association. The Association had its own banner, a library, a stall with devotional articles, conducted retreat, organized agricultural courses. Members played volleyball, organized Nativity play, sang at chorus. They participated in various courses; they even went by farm trailers to the cinema in Łuków. They conducted collection for poorest people for Christmas.

At first,the countess Maria Plater-Zyberk lived with her daughter Marylka in Wojcieszków but due to introduction of a German administrator and several robberies committed on her home, they moved from the palace with nothing and then lived at Krakowskie Przedmieście in Warsaw.

The countess Maria Plater – Zyberk died in Warsaw on 4th October 1964. She has been buried at Powązki cemetery in the Plater – Zyberk family grave.

Memory of people and horses that made Poland famous worldwide did not get lost at the Ramzes’s birthplace, the commune Wojcieszków. Ms Jadwiga Józwik, the president of Wojcieszków Friends Association, said: “We want at last to inform wide circles of people on Wojcieszków. Our commune can build its identity and future on Ramzes’s history. It was a city in 16th century. Within 1970s, we still were first in the province as regards horse breeding. We have weak soil and no industry but by contrast – excellent conditions to develop tourism. I think, Ramzes can become an attraction that, besides the glorious church and the regional exhibition room with numerous showpieces, will attract people here and the agricultural tourism will develop. Not only the commune will earn due to this but also the district.”[3]

[1]http://wolabystrzyckafotografie.blogspot.com/2015/11/maria-plater-zyberk-hrabina-z.html, access of 20.11.2019, 14:00

[2]Koń Polski, 1968 no 4 p. 20

[3]http://www.lukow24.pl/wiadomosci/informacje/pomnik-konia-w-wojcieszkowie,p29687820, access of 20.11.2019, 14:20


Breeder: Stadnina Koni Janów Podlaski

oo bay (Ofir — Federacja by Burgas or. ar.) born in 1938,
bred at Janów Podlaski Stud Farm

History of a horse not overcome by the war; after the long exile, the horse gained a new homeland, exerted huge influence on Arabian horses breeding and lived to see his own museum while alive.

Among others, four colts, reckoned to the ‘Big Four – 4W’, were born at Janów Podlaski Stud Farm in 1938. They were sons of stallion Ofir: Witraż, Wielki Szlem, Witeź II and Wyrwidąb (known later in Germany as Wind).

Director Andrzej Krzyształowicz that started his work in the stud farm as an apprentice in 1937, quoted the current opinion at that time that the first foals by Ofir promised well. They were correctly built, distinguished by their beauty and good movement. Unfortunately, the most of them got lost in September 1939.

According to estimation of Stanisław Pohoski, Janów Podlaski Stud farm director and a talented breeder, Ofir was the best stallion bred in Poland in the last century. He was a son of Kuhailan Haifi or. ar. imported by Bogdan Ziętarski for Roman Sanguszko’s stud in Gumniska and recognized as the best of Arabian horses brought in Poland ever. This stallion died after only two years in the stud farm; he left 14 descendants including Ofir, the best of them.

Director Pohoski decidedly appreciated horses of Kuhailan type. Surely for that very reason, he placed Witeź third after his contemporaries – Witraż (out of Makata by Fetysz) and Wielki Szlem (out of Elegantka by Bakszysz) favoured by him by virtue of their female lines. Witeź II, son of Federacja by Burgas or. ar, a typical Saklawi mare, was smaller than they but very elegant.

Someday, during turning out yearlings to grass, one of colts crowned Witeź with his croup and crushed Witaź’s arcus superciliaris; this could cause eye loss. Eng. Krzyształowicz immediately brought the perfect vet from Łódź, Dr Wilczyński. He removed numerous bone splinters and saved the eye. After two years, a trace of the injury disappeared and the contusion was almost imperceptible.

On 04 September 1939, German combat aircrafts attacked objects of the stud farm in Janów. On 10 September, Witold Pruski, chief of Horse Breeding Department at Agriculture Ministry, ordered evacuation of the stud farm southeast and did not specify a destination. On the same day, the stallions (some of them under grooms) left the stud farm. Next day, 260 horses and 19 horse carts with equipment and forage left the stud farm. A column of two kilometres moved only at night to avoid airstrikes. One night, horses were scared and frightened with lights and noise of a military truck and 80 of them escaped. Witeź was among them.

After Soviet army attack and occupation of the eastern regions of Poland, the column turned back to Janów. After twelve-day exhaustive migration at distance of 350 km, the horses reached the stud farm on 24th September. But their rest lasted not long. The Soviet troops incited civilians from villages located beyond the Bug river to rob and destroy the stud farm buildings. 5 Arabian stallions and 24 mares were taken away to a stud farm in Tiersk at Caucasus. It was such an unhappy end of the splendid development of the Janów Stud Farm.

After Red Army withdrawal from areas where Janów was situated and their occupation by German army, the invader – while appreciating value of Polish horses – started reconstituting the Arabian breeding. The buildings were brought to working order and some horses, distributed during evacuation, were gathered therein. Witeź II was also found. A forester who had looked after him, reconducted him to the stud farm when forage ran short. Horses in Janów was brand-marked, so the brands were helpful in horse retrieval and recognition. Witeź II had a brand showing a crown with a letter J on his right shoulder and a number 222 on his left shoulder. Witeź was directed from Janów to copulatory points and in 1942, transferred to Volhynian stud farm, Młynów, kept by a talented breeder Leonid Ter Asaturow.

In autumn 1942, Col Gustaw Rau managing horse breeding in occupied Poland and all countries subjugated by Germany started breeding ‘super horses’ in Czech stud farm Hostownia in Sudeten. 1500 horses were gathered therein including these of different breeds. The following Polish Arabians were among them: the stallions Witeź II and Lotnik, and the mares: Chloe, Iwonka III, Kalina, Karabela, Lituania, Sokora, Tarnina, Wierna and Zalotna. Soon after the stud farm organization, the American and Soviet armies started drawing on Hostownia. German vets, V. Leasing and W. Kroll, who attended the stud farm, suspected Russians to use the conquered horses as meat; so, they got across a front line to Third Army staff of Gen. George Patton. Gen. Patton, who was a cavalryman and crazy horseman, was easily convincible to ‘evacuate’ the most valuable horses into the American zone. On 28 April 1945, the horses were shifted to Monsbah Stud Farm in Bavaria distant by 300 km. They were transported with freight cars and trucks, and some of them, under command of William Quinlivan who was responsible for the operation, travelled this distance under saddle; Witeź II, Lotnik and Wierna were among them. After short rest, Gen. Patton, despite protests of Polish Stud Farm Management acting in the British occupation zone and these of Polish government, issued a command to send the horses with ships to the renowned American stud farm at Fort Royal in State of Virginia. At that time, a journey on a heavy sea in the height of winter was not easy but Polish horses spent it fit. Aboard, Wontez was born, out of Iwonka Ul by Witeź II.

Polish horses’ arrival to the United States changed the course of history of Arabian horse in this country. This resulted in a breeding shock and opened a way for the next invasion of Polish Arabians in 1960. The stallions impressed breeders at the very most. Lotnik was a faultless horse. Only his head, although of Arabian type, did not represented such a classical oriental type like Witeź.

Gladys Brown Edwards, the worldwide authority in Arabian horse breeding and their well-known lover, describes Witeź as follows: the stallion has a beautiful head, full of expression, big eyes and thin ears. And also, a good upper line, short back, horizontal long croup and perfect formation of front and hind legs.

After acclimatization at Fort Royal, the horses were sent to Fort Robinson and then to Kellog Farm (the army’s property at that time) at Pomona, State of California. Witeź II was a leading sire there until the United States’ government decided to use the horse no more in the army. On 25 May 1949, there was an auction organized in Fort Reno where 12 Arabian horses were sold. The average price was USD1,467.70. Witeź II was bought by a Polish horse’s lover, E. E. Hurlbutt, a president of International Arabian Horse Association, for a record price of USD8,100. For comparison, a price for a yearling filly was then USD600.

At Hurlbutt’s farm, Colarabia, in California, Witeź II, highly esteemed stallion, spent calmly his last years of his adventureful life far away from his intense war-past. This splendid stallion was visited by numerous breeders and admirers.

After a great and dangerous fire that ruined 70 thousand acres of forests adjacent to the stud farm, the owners decided to transfer horses to Barrow and Lou Bettsthe, the friendly breeders who popularised Polish horses for many years now.

Witeź II, his son Witezar, 20 mares with Witeź’s blood and 8 mares with Skowronek in their pedigrees were transported to Colorado with a giant car – „Palas Car”. The car for transport of such a great number of horses and their maintenance in comfortable conditions was built especially by Union Pacific Railroad. After 62-day journey, the horses came to their destination and were welcomed by movie sets, press crews, cameramen and enormous crowds. The horses were placed at the farm Circle 2 Arabians, in new-built stables with new- established pastures.

To fix and celebrate memory of Witeź II that was recognized a ‘super sire’ in his second home country and aroused general admiration and worship, Lou Betts built a museum of the stallion’s keepsakes at the farm.

At inauguration, she said: Here, at the cross-road of the West, we hope “Witezeum” to be Mecca for Arabian horse lovers from all quarters of the world. We want it to be not only an expression of homage and recognition for a great contribution of Poland for the Arabian horse world but also for a liberty love, a symbol of which is Witeź II.

In the United States, memory of Witeź is fixed by “Witeź II Fan Club” incorporating breeders and admirers of this stallion’s offspring as well as by great groups of young people interested in Arabian horses breeding.

Linell Smith described a life history and adventures of this great stallion in the book “And Miles To Go” .

One of the greatest experts of Arabians’ breeding, Carl Raswan, who accompanied Bogdan Ziętarski during purchase of Kuhailan Haifi, Witeź II’s grandfather, for duke R. Sanguszko, defined him as “Living Treasure of the World”.

Witeź II, representing the best Polish lines, was an ideal, classical type of Arabian horse. He transferred strongly his features to his offspring: a perfect, lively and gentle character, ease in training and use, great beauty, speed, endurance and regenerative abilities. Horses with his blood are characterized by a long complete stride, quick trot and good action in canter.

Witeź II’ offspring used to win at all show competitions. The horses by Witeź, in the first generation, won 19 National Championships and in the second generation, as many as 63 National Championships.

Already in the first performance at shows in 1953, Witeź II won a title “Pacific Coast Champion” and his son Zitez became a Vice-Champion in this competition. The father’s success was repeated by his sons, Zitez and Natez (twice).

The horses by Witeź came in Top Ten at National Championships of U.S.A. and Canada: Yatez, Fertezza, Nitez, Nirzan, Witezar, Black Magie, Tango (twice), Natez, Faro, Ibn Witez, Amatez and Bolero, the son of which, Zarazo, won National Stallion Championship in 1968.

Witeź’s name occurs many times in pedigrees of the best “cutting horses”. Classes for these horses, introduced in show programmes in 1950, become more and more popular.

Witeź’s blood occurs in pedigrees of horses moving up in the world in long-distance rides. Witeź II’s grandson, Wotezarif, Witezar’s son, won Trevis Cup three times in succession.

The winner of the first race for Arabian horses organized at the United States in the distance of 2.5 mile in 1959 was Ofir by Witeź II out of Tiara. He won this race twice more and was the second once.

Witeź II’ offspring showed jumping accomplishments and used to win steeple-chases.

The best horses were descended from connection of Witeź II with daughters of Polish stallion Skowronek’s sons bred in England: Raseyn and Raffles. This pedigree combination was called the “golden cross”. Thanks to such a “golden cross” – Witeź II x Raseyn – a great number of champions occurred in performance classes, especially in racing, long-distance rides and trials. Raseyn transferred outstanding athletic accomplishments.

One of the most outstanding Witeź II’s sons, Nitez, was just a result of such a “golden cross”, out of Raseyn’s daughter, Nafa. This stallion was also well-known due to transferring black colour, not very often in Arabian horses.

Instead, horses out of Raffles’s daughters, by Witeź II, were both athletic and beautiful.

As you can see, Witeź II without a doubt pioneered as regards the heritage of Polish Arabian horses in the United States.

Witeź’s son, bay Wisok also participated in popularization of Polish Arabian horses in U.S.A. at the same time. He was bred at Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski, born in Hostownia in 1944, out of Sokora by Hardy, missing together with his dam during the war in 1944. Both horses were found in Germany. Sokora returned to Poland and two-year Wisok came to the United States with the group of horses sent by Gen. Patton. He was severely injured during his journey to California. The animal for slaughter was “adopted” by an employee of stud farms for army. Until 1960, Wisok was used in half-bred horses breeding and had only one pure-bred Arabian descendant. He served as an ideal horse for children, at parades and to work with cattle. He was able to walk very quickly. Over the recent years of his life, he left a series of pure-bred Arab foals.

A stallion that played a significant role in European breeding after the World War II was another Witeź II’s son, Wisznu, of spectacular brown and copper colour, bred by Fryderyk Piotraszewski. Wisznu was born in Ołyka in 1943, out of Malaga (from Janów) by Mazepa II. As a yearling, the colt was evacuated with other horses in 1944. They tramped through a half of Europe to northern Germany. He was out of condition and was sold to a German farmer. He resold him to the circus Apollo11. In the circus, he was shown in dressage. As a result of a mishap, he lost his eye during training. On order of Gertraute Griesbach – a well-known breeder (called a German Lady Wentworth) and an owner of the famous stud farm Achental (compared to Crabett Park) – Wisznu was found after long research and taken from Apollo Circus11 to Achental by a young admirer of Polish Arabian horses, Liselotte Tarakus. Mrs Griesbach’s daughter Imielin, a vet, succeeded love of Arabian horses. In the second half of the sixties, Imielin moved to Argentina with some dams, one Wisznu’s son and a stallion Birbas by Witraż, imported from Poland. She established a stud farm that exerted great influence on breeding in South America.

Wisznu stayed in Achental where he gave a highly esteemed offspring with perfect mares gathered by Gertraute Griesbach. In 1964, in consequence of different circumstances, G. Griesbach moved her stud farm to Stróhen belonging at that time to Ismer family. Wisznu, under lease to Stróhen stud farm, reached his last days therein. He died suddenly on 22 August 1968.

The remaining Witeź II’s offspring born in Poland – i.e. the mares: Wieszczka, grey, out of Kalina, born in 1943, bred by the duke J. Radziwiłł in Ołyka and Wiklina, chestnut, out of Kalina Wnuczka, born in 1943, bred by Władysław Kołaczkowski in Dobużek; and the stallions: Wiwat 1943 and Wiktor 1945 out of Iwonka III, both chestnut and born in Hostownia – did not come into being in breeding.

Witeź II died calmly on a pasture on 10th June 1965. He left behind 215 foals in U.S.A. and he is a grandfather of 3534 horses. His offspring includes several thousand of horses now.

Read more…

Author: Zenon Lipowicz

The licence granted by Mr Zenon Lipowicz’s family to BoberTeam, for the needs of the project Polish Equestrian Legends.

Click the links below to go to the Polish Digital Equestrian Library (will open in a new tab):

„Witeź II – Wielki Wędrowiec” (2007) – Zenon Lipowicz

„Witeź II – The Great Wanderer” [EN](2007) – Zenon Lipowicz


Breeder: Stadnina Koni Janów Podlaski

oo bay (Kuhailan Haifi or. ar. — Dziwa by Aby Mlech) born 1933, died 1948; bred at Janów Podlaski Stud Farm

Ofir 1933, bred in Janów, is considered as the best stallion in Janów in the period between the World War I and the World War II.

Phenomenon of Ofir
Prof. Witold Pruski writes about Ofir as follows:

“Certainly, he wouldn’t win such a praise internationally like in Poland and he wouldn’t receive the best mares. In Janów however, with local beautiful mares, he left the superior offspring, e.g. Witraż 1938, Wielki Szlem 1938 and Witeź II 1938. Unfortunately, Ofir mated in Janów only for three seasons, 1937-1939. Seeing that he gave three such perfect stallions like these mentioned straight off in the first batch, it is expectable that he was especially suitable stallion for Janów. However, he didn’t stay long at his native stud farm. He went to Tersk in north Caucasus where he didn’t give offspring of such a class as in Janów. Ofir mated in Tersk in the period 1940-1948 and died there in1948. He became the main continuator of foundation stock of Kuhailan Haifi imported from Arabia in 1931 by Prince Roman Sanguszko.


Sponsor: Zamek Janów Podlaski, Grupa ARCHE


The first auction of pure-bred Arabians, in Poland and Europe, was organized by Pedigree Animals Breeding Federation, Foreign Trade Headquarters Animex and Farm Animals Turnover Federation at the premises of the Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski on 5.06.1970.

43 horses bred in stud farms Janów Podlaski and Michałów were presented during the auction including 18 stallions, 15 three-year and older mares, 7 two-year mares and 3 one-year fillies.

The stallions were shown in three categories. Five stallions (Espartero, Gazda, Ariel, Kumys, Cebion) prepared at Stallions’ Depot Kwidzyń by eng. Andrzej Orłoś were presented in typical American competitions Park Horse and English Pleasure, and then in five-in-hand driven splendidly by their trainer himself. The stallions Pentagon, Elfur, Złotnik, Dambor, Doman and Litawor, trained at the Racecourse in Warsaw, were prepared for flat races. (…)

Read more… (click to go to Polish Digital Equestrian Library)

Author: edit. of Koń Polski (Polish Horse) magazine

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„Pierwsza aukcja koni czystej krwi arabskiej” (1970) – Artykuł własny redakcji czasopisma „Koń Polski”

Five Arabian stallions led by their trainer – A. Orłos; drawbars: left – Kumys (Negatiw – Cumparsita), right – Ariel (Sędziwój – Arfa), commanders: left – Cebion, middle – Espertero, right – Gazda. Photo: Zofia Raczkowska
Og. Cebion (Negtiw – Celia) presented by Eng. Andrzej Orłos according to the accepted rules of showing horses in America. Photo: Zofia Raczkowska
Og. Bajdak (Comet – Bajdara) bred by the Horse Stud in Janów Podlaski, purchased to the USA for 30 thousand dollars. Photo: Zofia Raczkowska


Honorary Patron:


Guardians: The Krzyształowicz sisters (Jadwiga, Barbara, Anna and Marta), Marek Trela

The Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski is united inseparably with his many years’ director. He became a legend already while alive.


Andrzej Krzyształowicz was born in Vienna in 1915. He died in Janów Podlaski on 9 September 1998 and was buried at the local cemetery.

He was bound with agriculture since childhood thanks to his father that was an agent for Dzieduszycki’s estate in Zarzecze at that time. The family moved to Łańcut in 1923 where Kazimierz Krzyształowicz became a governor of count Alfred Potocki’s estates. Numerous count’s possessions included also Albigowa with the English thoroughbred stud farm. In that very place, the young man took an interest in horse breeding and horseback riding in the custody of Bolesław Orłoś, the stud farm manager. Where, he saw a pure-bred Arab for the first time, namely a stallion Kafifan brought from Egypt. This horse was his owner’s mascot and his pride and joy, and he was presented to numerous count’s guests who visited the stud farm. Maybe, this first contact with an Arabian horse decided further vicissitudes of the young man.

However, after obtaining the secondary-school certificate in Lvov in 1933, Andrzej Krzyształowicz decided to dedicate himself to aviation that was very fashionable among young people and he filed his documents to the school in Dęblin. Some health problems discomfited these plans and he had to choose another profession. In this situation, he chose agriculture, the closest domain to him from childhood. He studied at Agricultural and Forest Faculty at University of Poznań to know the profession to be performed by him for the rest of his life. His family moved to Surochów that time, because his father started working for Czartoryscy in Pełkinie. While visiting his parents, the young student confirmed his interest in horse breeding, in particular Oriental horse breeding since Czartoryscy had pure-bred Arabs and Anglo-Arabs.

Within the third year of the study period, he had to choose a final branch of study, so he started working at the horse breeding department. A year later, prof. Tadeusz Vetulani gave him the theme of his thesis, namely development of “Monograph of the Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski”.

Andrzej Krzyształowicz’s first visit in Janów (then beloved for the rest of his life) was on 5th July 1937 when he came to collect materials for his thesis. In Janów, he met Władysław Bielański, a student from Veterinary Medicine Academy in Lvov who just finished his apprenticeship, the further professor and world famous specialist in the field of horse reproduction; they became the many years’ friends.. The apprentices spent their time in Janów extremely laboriously – apart from collecting materials for their theses, they got the feel of everyday stable duties and had to learn to recognize all horses as this was required categorically by manager Stanisław Pohoski. Andrzej Krzyształowicz’s stay in Janów finished in September 1937. Then he began working out the collected materials and preparation for defence of his thesis. Finally, once he passed the exam, he graduated as an agricultural engineer on 24th June 1938, Today, his thesis is the unique source of knowledge on the stud farm in the interwar period. It comprises descriptions of the stud farm facilities, their architecture and functionality as well as the characteristics of horse breeds that were bred then in Janów, together with zoometry measurements. The war destroyed many buildings including stable buildings and some of them were not rebuilt after war; this fact rises the documentary value of the work even more. Presentation of breeding goals of the stud farm of that time and methods of their realisation is the source of information of extreme importance for contemporary breeders and it support them in their work since continuation of the breeding policy of that time made the contemporary successes of Polish breeding possible.

Manager Stanisław Pohoski and dr Witold Pruski, then chief of Horse Breeding Department at Agriculture Ministry, proposed jointly the elevated position of the assistant director of the Stud Farm in Janów Podlaski to the young graduate. As a result, on 1st December 1938, Andrzej Krzyształowicz acceded to a such responsible office at once; forthy authorities’ confidence to the young man’s abilities. Unfortunately, a dream come true on working at the stud farm of Janów happened in the tragic period for Poland – loss of independence and extinction of the splendid breeding of Janów.

After outbreak of war in 1939, in the absence of the manager, he had to deal with completely unusual situation caused by mobilization of some employees and to provide care and fodder to horses as well as to prepare the stud farm to war conditions. According to the authorities’ instruction on the stud farm evacuation, almost 200 horses, being led by about 40 people, left east on 11th September. They marched by nights to avoid (if possible) air raids that decimated columns of refugees on Polish roads. Under the guidance of Stanisław Pohoski, Andrzej Krzyształowicz together with retired colonel Jakimowicz, coach of young horses, and apprentice Adam Sosnowski led the over two-kilometre column of horses southeast to surroundings of the cities Kowel and Kamień Koszyrski (at present Ukraine). In Wierchy village, in the face of growing hostility of indigenous population that, in anticipation of invading soviet army, began threaten the people and horses safety, the decision was made to return to Janów.

The column of the exhausted horses and people returned to Janów on 24 September at 5 a.m. and soviet military vehicles transporting forces to take control on the stud farm drove in at 6 a.m. These armed forces dealt mainly with watch of safety of civilians coming from beyond the Bug River that started bestial plunder of all that could be taken. In the first instance, the horses were taken and then the fitting, fodder and stable equipment.

While being unable to counteract plunder of the stud farm and deprived of duties and his bread and butter sources, Krzyształowicz escaped from Janów at the beginning of October 1939. He returned in January 1940 to occupy a post of a groom at the stud farm being already in the area under German occupation. Under colonel Hans Fellgiebel’s command, he worked to reconstitute the breeding of Janów as a stud groom at the stallion’s depot and then as a technical assistant at the stud farm. He took part in finding the horses missing during evacuation and distributed in the field; they became a base of Polish breeding starting almost from nothing because after Russians’ departure, only two mares, Wierna and Wilga (yearlings), were found in the forest plus the orphaned foal Zalotna out of Makata. After several weeks, the next mare, Najada, was brought; she was stored by a farmer Zaręba.

For the whole period of German occupation, engineer Krzyształowicz worked actively to reconstitute the herd of Janów; at the end of the war, the number of horses was finally the same as before the war but their quality was of course not the same.

The next evacuation of the stud farm occurred on 16th July 1944, this time to the west – to Germany. Krzyształowicz did not leave the horses and accompanied them in the dangerous exile together with his wife, Zofia, and his daughter, Jaga. First, the stud farm was transported by railway from Biała Podlaska, through Gostynin, Görlitz, Lobau to Reichenbach and then they went on foot to Sohland at Saxony where they stayed until February 1945. On 13th February, the horses and the people left further towards Dresden. The night between 13th and 14th February 1945 was surely the most tragic one in the town history. The carpet bombing of allied bombers took place this night and the most of buildings in Dresden disappeared. Unfortunately, the stallions that moved faster than the mares and the young stock were found at the air attack zone and 22 stallions were lost. The survived stallions, the mares and the young stock reached Torgau on foot on 23rd February and then, by railway, Nettelau estate close to Kiel where the stud farm lived to see the final fall of Germany and the Allies’ arrival. In May 1945, the Polish Stud Farm Management in Germany came into being; Lt Col Władysław Rozwadowski was its first commander. All Polish stud farms and stallion’s depots located in the area of Germany were subject to this Management. The stud farms were reorganized after English fashion in autumn 1945 and the Stud Farm of Janów was included in the Polish Horse Depot No 2 as the Nettelau Department with Andrzej Krzyształowicz as its manager Once he arranged everyday activities of the stud farm, then starting from autumn 1946, he sent the following transportations of horses and equipment homewards; he himself came back to Gdynia by the last ship together with the most valuable pure bred Arab mares.

As the result of the war damage, Janów was not ready to receive horses and the Stud Farm of Janów found its temporary seat in Posadowo. Engineer Tadeusz Rudzki staying in Posadów between 1947 and 1948 wrote about this in his report as follows: “Thus, thanks to Polish stud farm personnel, managers relegated to dependent positions, grooms that left their homes and went on dangerous exile to the unknown providing only with the beloved horses, Poland and Polish breeding recovered this valuable material without which the situation of horse breeding in Poland would be critical due to the present war damage” (“Oriental Stud Farm of Janów in Posadowo. The report of one year’s stay developed by Tadeusz Rudzki, eng.”, 1947-1948; the Stud Farm Archive. The further quotations come from the same source). Once all 392 horses came from Germany to Posadowo, the inspection of the horses took place on 11-15 November where, according to Tadeusz Rudzki’s report, the following participants attended: “Chief Inspector of National Stud Witold Pruski, eng., inspector of District of Poznań Stanisław Hay, eng., manager of PSO Gniezno Bronisław Walicki, eng., manager of PSK Posadowo Czesław Hincz, eng., and the man who never left his horses – Andrzej Krzyształowicz, eng.”.

However, the post-war reality deviated considerably from that expected by the homecommer Krzyształowicz. He counted on possibility to continue his work with the horses of Janów in accordance with the breeding philosophy of Stanisław Pohoski, his teacher and creator of the pre-war successes of Janów. The new reality following other values brought however decisions that changed the breeding position of Janów for long and overshadowed this so well-deserved for the country stud farm. The source materials do not include any reasons that could justify meritoriously the decision on division of the Arabian depot into three separated stud farms; therefore, the opinion that it was an attempt to protect the Arabian breeding against communists’ liquidation endeavours seems doubtful. Unfortunately, this was the reality where ideas ignoring the pre-war achievements of Janów prevailed; the Carl Raswan, i.e. Karl Shulz’s rules on breeding the Arabian horses while maintaining the foundation stock purity were assumed despite they were shook by authorities of that time (Witold Pruski, Michał Jankowski); they are denied by contemporary scientists, too.

The surely objective observer, above-cited Tadeusz Rudzki noted as follows: I don’t know whether dr Skorkowski’s opinion prevailed during the last division of the pure bred Arabian or necessity (in absence of a facility to locate a greater group of horses within the Arabian region). Break of the pure bred into smaller group favoured dr. Skorkowski’s concept, anyhow three Arabian stud farms came into being; two of them have horses of Kuhailan type as far as possible and the third one of Saklawi type”.

Lack of a facility to locate the Arabian stud couldn’t be a rational argument because despite the stables in Janów were partially destroyed but they were quickly repaired and the part-bred Arabians and Anglo-Arabs came back home already on 30 October 1950. Before then, a training centre for young stallions was in operation and the stables held hackneys and Polish cold-blooded horses “kopczyki podlaskie”.

However finally, the horses of Janów were distributed among newly created stud farms in Albigowa, Nowy Dwór and Klemensów-Michałów. Andrzej Krzyształowicz, deprived of the horses saved by him, received the official command in December 1951 to accede to an office of a regional inspector of horse breeding for the south-eastern provinces and the order to move to PSO Białka together with his wife and four daughters. He fulfilled his new tasks perfectly, as usual. He supervised breeding at national studs at the region where the Arabians breeding was located, so he didn’t lose contact with his recent charges, however he dreamt constantly on their comeback home. At last, he came back to his Janów on 1st July 1956 where, some time later, he acceded to an office of a manager. Half-bred horses were already at the reconstructed stables and in 1960 and 1961, after liquidation of the stud farms in Albigowa and Nowy Dwór, the pure-bred Arabians were joined to them. The exile period ended and the period of the quiet breeding work began.

The pure-bred Arabian horses bred at Polish national stud farms arrested the foreign breeders’ attention and export of the horses started beginning from the early sixties on a more and more large scale. The growing interest in Polish horses resulted in necessity to arrange the trade and to this purpose, the first auction was organized in Janów in 1970. The success of this auction proved advisability of such a form of sale and the effects can be observed at present, when the auction of Janów celebrates the following jubilees and it became the event of the longest tradition worldwide. Andrzej Krzyształowicz was the organizer, the host, the “good spirit” and the living legend of the following auctions. The success in selling the horses of Janów and in arrangement of the next auctions shall be owed to him. The booming popularity of Polish horses and their successes at foreign shows indicated the necessity to arrange breeding shows also at our country; apart from being qualification of horses to international competitions, they should present the actual achievements of Polish breeders. Self-evidently, Janów and the days preceding its auction were chosen for this event. This increased the range of tasks of the manager of the Stud Farm of Janów and of course Krzyształowicz perfectly coped with new challenge: these events were organized excellently and the results of the horses presented by the Stud Farm of Janów were impressive.

Andrzej Krzyształowicz stayed on the position of the stud farm manager until retirement on 1st April 1991. After retirement, he did not lose contact with horses while offering advice and help to his successors.

His numerous pupils’ successes at breeding shows, racecourses and hippodromes in Poland and worldwide bear testimony of his superb breeding achievements. Thus, at the department of the pure-bred Arabians, the horses bred by Andrzej Krzyształowicz won as follows: 22 titles ‘Champion of Poland’; wins in the championships of USA, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, England, Canada, Brazil; 18 wins in Arabian Derby.

The department of the part-bred Anglo-Arabians delivered innumerable stallions to PSO (national stallion’s depot), priceless dam for local breeding and many excellent horses for sport.

The gold Olympic medal won in show-jumping by Jan Kowalczyk on Artemor from Janów is the best evidence of the highest quality of horses bred by Andrzej Krzyształowicz that was also an educator of all post-war generations of horse breeders in Poland while being a pattern of competency, conscientiousness, personal commitment and honesty for them.

Read more … (click to go to the Polish Digital Equestrian Library)

Author: Marek Trela

Andrzej Krzyształcowicz died on September 19, 1998 at the age of 83. He was buried at the Roman Catholic Cemetery in Janów Podlaski (52.190278, 23.215833).

Click the links below to go to the Polish Digital Equestrian Library (will open in a new tab):

„Andrzej Krzyształowicz” (2020) – Marek Trela

Andrzej Krzyształowicz and Marek Trela
Andrzej Krzyształowicz and Aloes sold to USA in 1987 for the price of USD350,000


Honorary Patron:

Sponsor: Marek Gawlik

Guardian: Jan Ziniewicz’s family

A groom from Janów Podlaski Stud Farm, that saved horses Witraż and Wielki Szlem during a carpet bombing of Dresden.


He was born in 1898.

Jan Ziniewicz started working with horses as the eighteen-years-old in 1916, in the period when the stud farm was evacuated during World War I far inside Russia.

After coming back to Poland, he worked as a groom in the stud farm, at first with mares and then with foals. In 1921, he began working at the racing stable. Every year during the season, he went to racecourses in Lvov, Lublin, Piotrków and Przemyśl. In 1937, he won the Oaks on Olsza and the Criterium on Lowelas (by Koheilan I) in the same season.

The war found the team in Lvov in 1939. Under the coach Szyszko’s command, they rode on horsebacks to Białka but their horses were taken by the army there. Then, the following horses disappeared from Polish breeding: Skrzyp, Kasztelan, Sumak, Rozmaryn, Robak, Rdest and Ramajana.

They walked back to Janów Podlaski for 5 days. During occupation, Ziniewicz worked at the leading stable as a groom. He took care of, among others, Witraż, Wielki Szlem and Werset. In 1943, he shipped off the stallion Witeź and two mares, Wierna and Zalotna, to the stud farm Hostownia (Czechosovakia).

During the stud farm evacuation in 1944, he took care of 8 horses at the beginning. During the stop at the rail station Biała, he wanted to come back home but he was alone in the car and “he had no heart to leave the horses without attendance”.

He reached Dresden together with the horses during a carpet bombing of the town on 13 February 1945. He led Witraż and Wielki Szlem. He did not release the horses even then when firebombs fell next to them. He mentioned the exceptional calm of our Arabians within the surrounding “hell”. After their arrival to Nettelau, he became a commander of the leading stable until return to Posadowo in 1946. Within his holiday, he went to Janów and stayed there (induced by R. Kajetanowicz).

He worked there with stallions and used to go with them to copulatory points for 3 years. Once the stud farm of Janów came back, he worked there as a commander until retirement in 1963. Waćpan was his beloved horse and Zimiewicz took care of him until the stallions’s death.

Jan Ziniewicz died on April 26, 1975 at the age of 77. He was buried at the Roman Catholic Cemetery in Janów Podlaski (52.190278, 23.215833).

Jan Ziniewicz with Almifar (Witraż’s grandson) and Czort (Wielki Szlem’s son).