It’s hard to imagine a more striking figure than the incredible Khemosabi++++//. This stallion holds a special place in the hearts of Arabian horse enthusiasts, but his impact goes far beyond breed affiliations, cultures, and countries. In the form of poetry, stories, models, statues, and artwork, people all over the world have contributed a piece of their hearts to this remarkable horse.
Often referred to as the “Superhorse of the 20th Century”, Khemosabi was not only one of the most influential stallions in the Arabian horse world, but also an incredibly successful performance horse in his own right. Khemosabi was the quintessential ambassador for the breed, setting a standard for excellence that others strive to emulate.
Khemosabi++++//, the “Superhorse of the 20th Century”, didn’t come into the world through an extravagant breeding barn; he was actually born in a backyard in Whittier, CA, by Dr. Bert and Ruth Husband.
Despite his humble beginnings, Khemosabi was immediately recognized as a special colt with his striking bay coat, four white stockings, and a distinctive blaze on his face. Perhaps due to his upbringing or his close bond with Ruth, Khemosabi was known for his friendly and curious personality, making him one of the most visited Arabian stallions in history during his 34 years of life.
Born a Champion
Khemosabi’s talent was not only limited to his physical abilities, but he also had an endearing personality that captured the hearts of many. He didn’t realize he was special, just a horse who loved people, adventure, and attention. His popularity grew when his owner’s son, Paul, created a series of cartoons featuring a masked horse and his red-haired companion, Ruth, fighting for truth, justice, and the Arabian way.
The cartoons made Khemosabi even more popular among Arabian enthusiasts, and his fan base grew rapidly. Later on, in the 1990s, Breyer created a model of Khemosabi, which became one of their top-selling models to this day.
Khemosabi’s rise to legendary status is undoubtedly remarkable, particularly in 1976, when he achieved a double win at the Canadian National Championship, being crowned both Halter Stallion and Western Pleasure Champion at the same event. This feat is a rarity in the world of horse shows, with only a few stallions able to claim national championship titles in both halter and performance categories.
Furthermore, Khemosabi’s ability to excel in both areas set him apart from many other stallions, who are typically retired from the showring after gaining notoriety as breeding stock. Khemosabi’s athletic and showy talents were passed down to his offspring, which only added to his legacy.
Khemosabi’s lineage can be traced back to the W.K. Kellogg breeding program, which relied heavily on horses from the Crabbet Arabian Stud in England during the 1920s. His sire was Amerigo and his dam was Jurneeka++, both of whom were products of this program.
It is noteworthy that during the 1960s and 1970s, the trend in the Arabian horse industry was to import horses for breeding purposes, but Khemosabi was considered an “All American” horse because his closest imported relative was his granddam, *Szarza, who hailed from Poland.
Khemosabi was born in 1967 and began his breeding career two years later in 1969 at Varian Arabians located in Arroyo Grande, CA. He played a pivotal role in Shelia Varian’s prestigious breeding program, owing to his exceptional western athletic abilities.
After securing several national-level championships in the United States and Canada, the stallion was syndicated in 1980. Ruth Husband, Khemosabi’s longtime friend, was appointed as the syndicate manager until his demise in 2001 at the age of 34. During his illustrious career, Khemosabi was awarded the Arabian Horse Association’s Legion of Masters award, the highest honor in the industry.
The loss of Khemosabi++++// in 2001 marked the end of an era for the Arabian breed, but his legacy lives on in the hearts and minds of his countless admirers. His impact on the breed is undeniable, and even now, many years after his passing, he remains a beloved figure among Arabian enthusiasts. As I sit here, writing these words, a small bay Breyer model with four white stockings and a blaze stands proudly on my bookshelf, a testament to the enduring