In 2010, Rohdiamant stood on third place in the WBFSH Ranking of the best sires for rideability – even ahead of his sire, Rubinstein. Rubinstein's career was filled with highlights: Winner of his licensing, two-time Bundeschampion, main premium winner and Grand Prix winner under Lisa M. Wilcox/USA. From his more than 50 licensed sons, the most prominent are the Champion Stallions Ron William, Rhodon, Rosenberg and Blue Hors Romanov. The latter, bred by Harli Seifert, received the 2008 VTV-Sport Stallion of the Year award and made a successful debut in World Cup free-styles in 2010. His full brother, Rubin-Royal, who received the 2007 VTV Dressage Stallion of the Year award, also won an Oldenburg main premium, racked up victories in Grand Prix dressage and is also stationed in Lodbergen.
With the look of a champion, radiant type, presence, and movement. Dam Elektia's pedigree contains a successful Oldenburg line that has a tradition of more than 70 years. Highlights: 1992 - winner of the approval in Oldenburg, 1993 – Bundeschampion and Reserve Champion of the stallion performance test (dressage index 150.00 points), 1994 – winner of the Main Premium in Oldenburg, 1995 – Bundeschampion of 5 year old dressage horses, 1996 – 2002 - active in international dressage sport. Life-time earnings in Germany are presently 70,514 EURO.
Breeding highlights: On the basis of numerous licensed sons (42), Champion and Reserve Champion stallions, State Premium and Brilliantring mares, top auction horses and Bundeschampions, Rohdiamant can be designated a trademark stallion. To his off-spring he passes on his type, radiance, rideability and above all his enormous movement dynamics. Most successful off-spring: Reine Seide (1998 Oldenburg Champion Mare), Ron William (Champion Stallion in Oldenburg, 2001), Rubin Royal (Main Premium winner in Oldenburg, 2001), Rosenberg (2003 Champion Stallion of the British Warmblood Ass.), Rosentanz (Top priced stallion at the 2003 approval in Verden and winner of the 30-day test in Münster Handorf ´04), Rembrandt Royal (top priced stallion at the 2003 approval in Vechta), Riverdance (top priced riding horse at the auction in Münster-Handorf 2004), Blue Hors Romanov (2004 Champion Stallion in Denmark), Royal Prince (Winner of the National Dressage Championships in the class for 5 year old horses in Kentucky Horse Park, USA), Rhodon (2004 Champion Stallion of ZFDP 2004).
It was Rohdiamant, a foal from his first crop (out of Elektia V who is by the Anglo Arab stallion, Inschallah) who put Rubinstein on the map as a sire. In 1993, Martina Hannöver rode Rohdiamant into equal first place (with Wolkenstein II) in the 3 year old Championship at the Bundeschampionate.
Rohdiamant went on to be an exciting Grand Prix horse, ridden by the then German based, US born, Lisa Wilcox, and just missed out on the American dressage team to go to the Sydney Olympic Games. He then disappeared from the competition circuit after a series of disappointing outings.
For a while he looked as if he might be an exciting sire: Ronaldo won the 4 year old Mares and Geldings Championship at the Bundeschampionate in 1998 and went on to be reserve champion in the five year old dressage championship in 2000, while another son, Roman Nature won the 3 year old Stallion title at the 1998 Bundeschampionate, and the 5 year old stallion class at the big stallion show at Zwolle, but just as Roman Nature failed to go on, Rohdiamant’s career also stalled – perhaps because his offspring tended to vary so wildly in type, from black and 17 hands to orange and 14.2….
Rohdiamant’s full-brother, Royal Diamond (born in 1994) won the 5 year old championship at the Bundeschampionate and went on to compete Grand Prix and in his first season scored a 69.5 in only his second ever Grand Prix Special. He too has disappeared from the competition scene with the departure of Lisa Wilcox from the Vorwerk Stud team.
Royal Diamond at home with Lisa Wilcox
The 2014 Hanoverian Stallion book records that Rohdiamant has 693 registered competition horses with €937,247 in prizemoney. There are 616 placegetters in dressage (109 to S level) and 70 jumpers.
He produced 15 horses with winnings of more than €10,000. Top of the list is Helen Langhanenberg’s Responsible, a horse that almost made it to the top, but still won €81,521. Currently the Italian rider, Valentina Truppa has been very successful with Eremo del Castegno (out of a Weltmeyer mare), while his son, Blue Hors Romanov, has had a moderately successful career at Grand Prix level.
In the 2016 Hanoverian book, he has 699 competition horses for €1,015,835 in winnings. Nineteen dressage horses have earned over €10,000. His FN dressage value is 139, for jumping, 73. His Hanoverian dressage value is 142 (trot – 107, canter – 127, walk – 174, rideability – 145) with a jumping value of 87. He scores 117 for type, and 120 for his limbs.
In the 2017 book, he has 704 competitors with earnings of €1,047,014. Nineteen progeny have won €10,000, with Responsible still the most successful.
On the 2017 FN breeding values, he scores 133 as a young horse sire, and 140 for open competition. On the Hanoverian values he scores 141 for dressage, and 86 for jumping. His value for type is 115.
Helen Langehanenberg and Responsible
In the 2018 Hanoverian Stallion book, Rohdiamant has 711 competitors, with winnings of €1,077,658. He sired 124 S level dressage competitors and 22 dressage horses that won more than €10,000, the most successful of which was Responsible OLD with €81,521. He was the sire of 11 licensed sons, the most important of which were the full-brothers, Romanov and Rubin-Royal. His FN dressage value for 2017 as a sire of young horse competitors was 132, while his value for open competitors is 139. Interestingly, when I looked at the German FN breeding values from 2002 to 2017, only seven appeared on both lists: Don Schufro, Fidermark, Welt Hit I & II, Donnerhall, Florestan and Rohdiamant.
Valentina Truppa and Eremo del Castegno at the WEG in Normandy
Romanov is one of 50 licensed sons, including Rubin-Royal, Ron William, Rhodon, Rosenberg and Rosentanz.
I was intrigued when my friend, Jens Meyer offered to introduce me to Hans Francksen, the breeder of Rohdiamant – especially since the pedigrees provided for Rohdiamant are conspicuously silent when it comes to his mare line, the pedigree tends to stop with his grand-dam Elektia. In fact, the line stretches back over 70 years…
“This family of horses began in 1932, when our family bought a filly foal for 250 reichmarks,” Mr Francksen told me – well actually Mr Francksen speaks only Plat Deutsch, a language from the northern region of Germany, and Jens, who spoke Plat Deutsch as a child at home, had to translate Mr Franksen’s answers first into German and then to English for me. Thanks Jens.
“My father had begun to train horses and sell them to the army. That is why they started to look for State Premium mares, and the foal he bought in 1932 was his first State Premium mare – and her family goes back almost to 1870.”
“My father was six years in the Army in the First World War, in the cavalry. After the war, he started taking horses that people had problems with, getting them doing the job, then selling them again.”
“The people around us bred only heavy horses, but my father was always interested to have a modern rideable horse – not the heavy horse. It was my father who taught me to breed with Thoroughbred stallions – the reason I am breeding today with His Highness, is that I am interested in using Trakehner lines.”
Ludo from the Oldenburg stallion line that starts with the Thoroughbred, Lupus xx
The two names that appear on Rohdiamant’s pedigree, also featured in the field:
“As a young man I worked with the Ludo mare (Elektira IV – Rohdiamant’s great great grand dam) and the Condor mare, the normal farm work, and it was very difficult because these horses had too much Thoroughbred in them. They were very sensitive to work with.”
Condor by the famous French jumping sire, Foudroyant II xx
“In 1960 I worked with both mares, in front of the mower. We had a pump to drain the fields, and the horses were afraid of the pump and they ran away – but I could still control them.
I said stop, and they stopped. The horses pulled me half over the mower but I could still stop them.” It is interesting just how much French blood shows up on Rohdiamant’s pedigree. His dam, Elektia V is by another famous stallion to stand at the Vorwerk station, the grey French Anglo Arab, Inschallah, but her dam, Elektia is a great grand-daughter of another famed French sire, Foudroyant II. Foudroyant II was Furioso’s great rival, and while he produced Tokyo Games team silver medallist, Kenavo D, he did not produce quite so many superstars as Furioso, whose son, Furioso II was another Vorwerk stallion star. Elektia’s grand dam, Elektira IV, is from the influential Thoroughbred line of Lupus – a German representative of the Bay Ronald dynasty.
Mr & Mrs Francksen with Rohdiamant’s full-sister and her foal by His Highness
Why did Mr Francksen pick on the relatively unknown Rubinstein to cover his mare, Elektia V?
“I was breeding at Vorwerks station for 30 years – Furioso was the reason I went to Vorwerk. That is why I used the new stallion, Rubinstein. I had seen Rembrandt on the television, and he is from the same family as Rubinstein and that is why I used him.”
“Rohdiamant’s mother had seven foals from Rubinstein, 16 foals in her life! The first success for riding horses really came with Rubinstein – the two brothers, Rohdiamant and Royal Diamond, Klatte bought another full-brother that he sold to Belgium, There is the mare that I still have, one foal was sold to Cologne to a horse breeder.”
Hans Francksen was not happy with some of the modern trends in breeding…
“In the past in this area, in every house there were horse people, now nothing. It is difficult to find someone who wants to go to the mare shows. The sons are not taking over from the fathers – we are losing the horse people.”
“Now we don’t have horse people, we have wealthy people breeding horses, and this is not good. I want to see breeders who think in generations and not changing every season, here and there, everywhere.”
Mr Francksen died in May 2014 at the age of 89.