History

What is a Curly?

Curly horses in the 2007 Rose Parade in Pasadena, CA. Photo by Zeetz Jones/flickr.com

by Kristin Berkery

Most horses’ coats become wild and woolly in the winter, but not Curly horses. Starting in the fall, most Curlies grow a winter coat of luxurious curls or waves covering their bodies. The coat sheds in the warmer months leaving smooth or wavy hair behind, and in some cases, they may even shed their entire manes and tails in the summer.
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The Akhal Teke: Desert Horse To Olympic Champion and Back Again

by Kristin Berkery

>> Download the complete 1,400-word article for Kindle

Horse and rider in native Turkoman costume, date and photographer unknown

Horse and rider in native Turkoman costume, date and photographer unknown

Absent, foaled in 1952 and winner of three Olympic medals. Photographer unknown

Excerpt: This summer marks 52 years since one of the most unusual horses first competed at the Summer Olympics in Rome. Absent, a striking black Akhal Teke stallion with four white socks and a star, introduced the world to a little-known ancient breed when he won a gold medal in dressage for the Soviet Union. He returned to the Olympics two more times for an individual bronze medal in 1964 and a team gold medal in 1968, both in dressage.
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The Wild Horses of Chernobyl

In a weird twist, the worst man-made disaster in history has provided a new home for endangered Przewalski’s Horses.

by Kristin Berkery

Chernobyl reactor 4 after the explosion.

In the middle of the night on April 26, 1986, an explosion at the V.I. Lenin Nuclear Power Station near Chernobyl, Ukraine, changed history.

Nuclear fallout was discovered on the other side of the world within a week. Nearly half a million people were resettled from contaminated areas. The number of deaths attributable to the disaster is unknown. The cleanup became a huge financial burden on the Soviet Union, and the government’s secretiveness about the disaster led to a demand for reforms (glasnost) that precipitated the crumbling of the Soviet empire.
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What is Il Palio?

by Kristin Berkery

The winner is the horse that crosses the finish line first, regardless of whether it has a rider.

The starting line of Il Palio di Siena.
Photo by Janus Kinase

Held twice every summer, Il Palio di Siena is the wildest horse race in modern times. The jockeys ride bareback on mixed breed horses they may be unfamiliar with at blinding speeds through dirt-covered streets in Siena, Italy. The whips they carry are used for interfering with other riders and horses in addition to encouraging their own horses forward. It’s common for riders to be unseated and their mounts to finish the race without them.

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Favorite Horse News from January

by Kristin Berkery

I wasn’t able to post on ilovehorses.net as often in January because I have some exciting publishing opportunities I’m working on. I’m still active on Twitter and Facebook almost every business day, sharing horse-related news and photos from around the world. Here are a few of my favorite stories from the last few weeks.

Cavalia
Similar to Cirque du Soleil, Cavalia: A Magical Encounter Between Human and Horse is an artistic celebration of horses. It features 45 horses from 10 different breeds as they do amazing feats and interact with the human performers. Currently in Seattle until February 19, the show is moving to St. Louis beginning March 14.

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