This message was incorrectly addressed and bounced to me, so I'm
forwarding it back to ridecamp.
Please note the original sender - PONTECORVO@vxjinr.jinr.ru
If you wish to reply, make sure you don't send it to me!
p.s. Lots of non-endurance posts lately....
From: PONTECORVO@vxjinr.jinr.ru [SMTP:PONTECORVO@vxjinr.jinr.ru]
Sent: Wednesday, April 16, 1997 10:00 PM
Subject: Akhalteke, Russia
To whom it may concern.
I have been induced to write this letter by the correspondence
between the American owners of Akhalteke horses and members of the
well-known to us in Russia "International Akhalteke Association",
in particular, with R.Kirsch, president of the said association.
All the correspondence has been kindly sent to me by Lari Shea via
A few words about myself. I, Pontecorvo N. Tito, Ph.D., am owner
of a stud-farm, created for breeding Akhalteke horses (at the end
of this letter follows an official letter signed by T.N.Riabova,
leading Russian specialist in Akhalteke horse breeding). At
present the herd at my farm comprises over 200 horses. I am member
of the direction and one of the founders of the Russian
Association of Akhalteke horse breeding, member of the
International Association of Akhalteke horse breeding, registered
in Russia, the country with the largest and best group of
Akhlateke horses. Moreover, only our Association is authorised to
enter information into the closed studbook of Akhalteke horses. A
horse that is not registered in our studbook cannot be considered
a pureblood Akhalteke horse.
In her sharp and accusatory letter of 6 June 1996, Kirsch claims
that Phil Case and the members of the Akhal-Teke Association of
AMERICA do not breed pureblood Akhalteke horses, because their
horses are not registered in the closed studbook of Akhalteke
For information: it is already two years that the American
Association of Akhalteke horses have been negotiating with the
President of the Russian Association of Akhalteke horse breeding
for registering American Akhalteke horses in the Russian studbook.
This year, in May, Tatiana N. Riabova, the main Russian and World
specialist in the Akhalteke breed, is to visit the USA to work on
registration in the the closed studbook of those American horses,
that will pass the necessary blood tests.
It is only to be regretted that our countries, Russia and the USA,
are situated so far away from each other, resulting in many
problems not being resolved as soon as desired, but one cannot
deny that they are being dealt with!!!
I was astonished by the amount of false information on Akhalteke
horses, on the situation in Russia, on the cost of horses in
Kirsch writes that from the beginning Akhalteke horses were small,
coarse, suitable as battle horses. From where does this totally
erroneous information arrive, and why is it given?
Comparison of modern horses with prehistoric drawings on rocks,
studies of ancient decorations for horses, literary sources,
measurements of horse bones found at ancient burial-grounds all
reveal that the Akhalteke horse of ancient times was a large, dry
and elegant horse with a long neck, very similar to the modern
Krisch writes that Akhalteke horses are not suitable for dressage.
I could address the same to Kirsch concerning the German breeds
Hannoverian, Golstein and others, which only 80-90 years ago
pulled tram-wagons in Germany and have now become known as good
horses for dressage. There is a training (sportive) department at
my stud-farm, where about 40 new horses are taken each year, and
on the basis of my work and experience I am able to claim that the
percentage of Akhalteke horses exhibiting talent in dressage is
higher than in other breeds.
I was quite suprised when I read what Kirsch writes about her
noble mission concerning potential American buyers of horses, that
those who are against selling Akhalteke horses for low prices
should be removed; she calls herself and her comrades-in-arms
I really don't understand what nobility she means - at any rate,
she will certainly not be able to purchase good Akhalteke horses
in Russia for 1000-4000 $; attempts at buying horses for such
prices cannot be considered a noble action. Such activity should
rather be termed an ignoble attempt at beating down prices of
horses in a country, that is one of the monopolists of this breed.
Kirsch does not understand that Russia is a new country, where 50%
(and this number is increasing rapidly) of the horses are owned
privately; the new owners know the true value of their horses and
will not let anyone to beat down prices. For some strange reason
Kirsch says nothing about the prices of Akhalteke horses in
Germany - just to mention prices of 1000-4000 $ per horse would
make anyone laugh.
Kirsch is very aggressive, when she mentions the letter by K S
Swigart. I nothing wrong in Swigart's letter; indeed the situation
in Russia is very dangerous and criminal, at presnt; we actually
do sell our horses at very good prices. R.Kirsch writes that, most
likely, K S Swigart has never been in Russia; reading Kirsch's
letter one gets the impression that it is precisely Kirsch who has
never visited Russia.
Kirsch writes that Germany has a third priority in the row of
countries with horses of the Akhalteke breed - I would like to
remind her that during the whole period that there exists a market
of Akhalteke horses between USSR and Germany not one horse above
the average class has been sold in Germany (this is the official
opinion of the direction of the Institute of horse breeding and of
the Association of Akhalteke horse breeding).
I, for example, consider noble an action undertaken by the Dubna
Rotary Club, a member of which I am, with the purpose of
collecting money needed to operate an ill child. Kirsch considers
it noble (she calls herself and her comrades "naive idiots") to
take advantage of economic and social difficulties in Russia for
trying to buy from the Russians splendid horses at really funny
I wish to inform all individuals interested in Akhalteke horses,
that in spite of the numerous difficulties in everyday life in
Russia, we are not so crazy, at present, to sell good horses to
intermediaries from various countries at anomalously low prices,
when we are quite aware of our monopoly in Akhalteke breeding.
By the way, the price for a good Akhalteke horse in Germany or
Sweden is not lower than 20,000 $; for some reason Kirsch does not
mention this. We, owners of Akhalteke horses in Russia do not need
the services of such intermediaries as Kirsch.
I was surprised by the strikingly shameless false information on
the transport, which apparently is supposed to fly from Mineralnye
Vody in Russia to the USA with horses at prices between 1000 and
4000 $ in the spring or the beginning of summer of 1997. That is
all lies. Why Kirsch needs to flood INTERNET with all this false
information remains a puzzle?!
In the nearest future, the direction of our Akhalteke association,
whose attitude toward the activities of R.Kirsch and her comrades,
severely impeding the prosperity of the Akhalteke breed everywhere
in the world, is strongly negative, intends to issue some document
presenting its opinion on the situation.
We, owners of Akhalteke horses in Russia, are certainly to blame
that for such a long time we did not react in any way to false and
pretentious information on Akhalteke horses.
On behalf of the following group of owners of Akhalteke horses:
Studfarm "Chagorto" in Kalmikia - over 100 horses;
Studfarm "Of Gi Huri" (Moscow region) - 40 horses;
Studfarm "Akhaltekinets" (Moscow region) - 200 horses.
Owner of "Akhaltekinets" T.N.Pontecorvo
P.S. In 1997 I plan to export 70 pure-blood Akhalteke horses
registered in the studbook; the ages of the horses vary
from 1 year up; the prices are like in Europe: the price
for a grown-up horse will not be lower than 20,000 $.
P.S. For communication:
3 Veksler st.
Phone: +7 (09621) 62288
Fax: +7 (09621) 66824
+7 (09621) 65346
+7 (08236) 31663
P.S. Information on the studfarm "Akhaltekinets" can be found in
INTERNET at: http://www.dubna.ru/horses/
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF AKHALTEKE HORSEBREEDING (IAAH)
All-Russia Scientific Research
Institute of Horsebreeding
391128 Ribnoe, Riazan, Russia
29.03.97 No. 20/97
Dr. Tito N.Pontecorvo, Ph.D., owner and CEO of the studfarm
"Akhaltekinets" is one of the founders and member of the Board of
the Russian Association of Akhalteke Horsebreeding (AATH) and
member of the International Association of Akhalteke Horsebreeding
"Akhaltekinets" owns a herd of over 200 pure-blood Akhalteke
horses with over 50 breeding mares. The share of the horsebreeding
farm "Akhaltekinets" comprises 20 percent of the total number of
Akhalteke horses in Russia. The horses of the "Akhaltekinets" are
on the list of the International Studbook of pure-blood Akhalteke
The mares and stallions kept at the farm belong to the
leading blood lines and have earned top marks for parentage, type
The unique equestrian complex has been built to accomodate
the animals and includes stables, paddockes, an indoor manage, a
veterinary section, a hotel, and numerous auxiliary buildings.
There are paddocks, training onefulds and graying fields.
All the above mentioned allows the private farm
"Akhaltekinets" to carry out pointed selection, to produce and
raise high class horses, which in certain aspects surpass the
production of other studfarms.
Leading specialist of the
All-Russia Scientific Research
Institute of Horsebreeding,
PH.D. in biology Tatiana N.Riabova
Sealed with IAAH seal