Criban Victor foundation sire of Section B Welsh ponies

Welsh Pony & Welsh Cob


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Casmaran Welsh Cobs and Cross Creek Welsh Ponies


Criban Victor Foundation Sire of Section B

Certain stallions have proved to be landmarks for the Section B pony. One of these ponies is Criban Victor (1775) (Criban Winston x Criban Whalebone), 5 time winner of the Royal Welsh Show . Born in 1944. Criban Victor is the best example of Section B ponies with the "outside" influence of Cob breeding.

Quoting Dr. Wynne Davies "if (Criban) Victor had been foaled after the 1950's, he would have been in Section C (registry)". The history and future of Section B ponies would have been re-written if Criban Victor had not been part of the foundation of this section! The story of the Criban stud is one that is steeped in the history of the Welsh Mountain Pony and Cob. The love of the land which had been in the Richards family since 1697 was a controlling interest along with their equal love for their livestock and Welsh Ponies and Cobs. Criban Victor was a product of this love. Quoting a 1964 article by Nell Pennell, "From this hardy stock the Criban ponies are descended, their records going back for 200 years." Mr. Howell Richards registered the prefix Criban with the Welsh Pony & Cob Society. Mr. Richards died in 1963 at the advanced age of 97. Howell Richards was notorious for his riding talents, "He rode ponies of about 13 hands. very similar in type to the Champion Welsh Pony of today, Criban Victor. Mr. Richards was a fine horseman, and being of light weight, could easily ride ponies. He had no use for cob or pony that lacked the conformation to be good ride or the limbs and feet to stand the work."

Criban not only used stallions of their own breeding but also used many outside stallions. This fact is proven many times over, and a good example of this is Criban Victor's sire, Criban Winston. Criban Winston was one of the first sons of Coed Coch Glyndwr (1617) (Revolt x Dinarth Henol). Criban Winston's is famous not only for his most famous son, Criban Victor, but careful study of early stud books prove the tremendous numbers of ponies he sired. Criban Winstonís influence was felt at Dyrin, Bowdler, Revel and many other studs as he was a premium stallion for ten years.

Criban Victor's dam, Criban Whalebone (9138) (Mathrafal Broadcast x Criban Mulberry) was produced by crossing one of the oldest lines of Criban' s Welsh Mountain ponies to a Cob. Criban Whalebone was a bay mare about 13 hands; she produced Criban Victor and Criban Gay Snip, the grand-sire of Solway Master Bronze. When Whalebone was five years old and only broken to halter, the Richards brothers decided that she would make a good shepherding pony and decided to break her to saddle in one day. Whalebone would have none of this she kept bucking off her riders and was allowed to return to the hills and concentrate on producing more excellent foals! Certainly, the heritage of fine performance ponies played heavily in the characteristic that Criban Whalebone gave her progeny.

Criban Mulberry (Criban Cracker 1308 x Criban Rasberry (7971) traces directly to the stallions Invincible Taffy (593) and Criban Wild Wonder (1179). Invincible Taffy's dam was Chocolate Lass (3442) born in 1905 and out of Ystrad Jewel (273) foaled in 1893. Invincible Taffy was a small pony (under 12 hands) but a pony that could take a rider all day on the hills. Criban Wild Wonder was a son of the grey mare Wild Flash (3552) foaled in 1897 and one of the favorite driving ponies of the Richards' family.
Mathrafal Broadcast (1502) (Mathrafal Eiddwen x Plasgwyn Polly) came to Criban in 1935, and was the personal mount of Llewellyn Richards. In 1937, Mrs. Alice McLean of Long Island, New York saw Mathrafal Broadcast and along with eight lovely Criban mares, Broadcast was imported to the United States. Mrs. McLean used Broadcast on her Polo Pony mares but shortly after Mrs. McLean died, and the ponies were lost. Mathrafal Eidden was a fine example of a Cob and was a Royal Welsh Winner four times. Mathrafal Eidden's influence in the Cob world was mainly through his son, Eiddwen's Image (1703) who produced Pentre Eiddwen Comet. Pentre Eiddwen Comet (1796) is the sire of Llanarth Flying Comet, Nebo Black Magic and Parc Welsh Flyer all famous in their own right.

Criban Victor was sold to Mrs. Cuff of the Downland Stud at the Criban Sale in November of 1946. Victor was shown at the Royal Welsh in 1947 and then sold to Lord Kenyon of the Gredington Stud, where he stayed until his death in 1973. Criban Victorís show record was outstanding, winning the Royal Welsh in 1956, 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1964; the Ponies of Britain Championships in 1959, 1962, 1965 and 1966; and the National Pony Society Shows in 1956, 1959, 1960. At twenty-five years of age Victor won the Section B Championship and Reserve Supreme Championship in 1969.

The most influential imported sire of Section B breeding Cusop Sheriff is a great-grandson of Criban Victor. Wickenden Osprey, is a Criban Victor grandson. And Findeln Blue Danube, is a great-grandson and double great-great-grandson of Criban Victor!

*Cusop Sheriff at GlanNant Farm, N. Y. a great-grandson of Criban Victor.

Three sons of Criban Victor have played important roles at major studs in the United States. Criban Victorís first son imported to the United States was Ankerwycke Victor 2231 (2391) (x Ankerwycke Criban Snowdon (9555)) a brown stallion born in 1955 and imported in 1956 by Bray's Island Plantation, Yemassee, SC. Ankerwycke Victor spent his last years at Neilsondale Farm, Canada and died in the fall of 1984. While at Neilsondale Stud, Ankerwycke Victor produced several foal crops where his blood continues on.

Coed Coch Ballog B≠2919 (2518)(x Berwyn Beauty (9270)) a bay stallion born in 1956 and imported in 1958 by D. H. Fraser, Canada. While at Duntulm Stud Ballog produced numerous get including Duntulms Two Step a.k.a. Snowgoose owned by Millbrook Farm in New Jersey, one of the most recognized pony hunters . More recently he was owned by Cherry DeSpain of Bristol Pony Stud, Channelview, TX and is currently owned by the Burkharts of Rambur Stables, Newton, KS. Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad B-4962 (2222) (x Berwyn Beauty (9270)) was a chestnut roan stallion born in 1953 and imported in 1959 by Elliot Bonnie, Urbana, OH. Blaen Lleuad spent the rest of his life at the Bonnie's and his get are most commonly seen under the Buckeye prefix.

Coed Coch Ballog B≠2919 (2518)

The three daughters of Criban Victor who have had the greatest influence on Section B breeding here in the United States are Vanity B-1945 (10363) (x Coed Coch Silian (9388)) and her full sister Verity B-1944 (9974) imported in 1955 by Mrs. Chambers of Lithgow Pony Stud, Millbrook, NY. Verity was the older and larger of these two full sisters. Upon Mrs. Chambers death, John Lindemann of Richmond, VA took over Lithgow Pony Stud and produced Lithgow Gay Grenadier (Kirby Cane Jay x Vanity) and Lithgow Wishnik (Cusop Sheriff x Verity). Their get can be found at Bristol Pony Stud, GlanNant Farm, Madoc Welsh Pony Farm, Caer Wydr Welsh, Timbercreek Stables, Cross Creek Farm and many others around the country.

In 1959, Mrs. Karl Butler of GlanNant Farm, Ithaca, NY imported Coed Coch Prydyddes (B-9 3 9- F. S. 2) (x Coed Coch Pluen 312-F.S. 1). At the advanced age of 33 years Prydyddes passed away in the fall of 1985. The two most famous sons, both by Cusop Sheriff are GlanNant Limerick of Findeln Stud, VA (sire of Findeln Blue Danube) and GlanNant Ballad who was senior stallion at GlanNant. Prydyddes most famous daughter was GlanNant Sonnet daughter of the lovely Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad son Rhyd-Y-Felin Selwyn. Sonnetís last son by Ballad, GlanNant Bard, was a Supreme National Champion and is a notable USEF pony hunter sire.

*Coed Coch Prydyddes (Criban Victor x Coed Coch Pluen) at GlanNant Farm, N. Y.

GlanNant Ballad (*Cusop Sheriff x Coed Coch Prydyddes) at GlanNant Farm, NY


Rhyd-Y-Felin Selwyn at Isle of Wright 1982.

One test of the greatness of a stallion and his influence are the number of people that continue his blood through a line-breeding program. In the U.K. Lady Margaret Middleton (Chirk), Mrs. Colbatch-Clark (Collena) and Mr. and Mrs. A. P. Allen (Bleachgreen) just to mention a few are using this program. Here in the States, Mrs. Karl Butler (GlanNant), Cherry DeSpain (Bristol) and Sara Bloomer (Cross Creek and Casmaran) are currently doing Criban Victor line-breeding. In Canada, Anita Neilson (Snow Pony) has one of the largest groups of Criban Victor relatives in the world.

Bristol Serafina


What is most impressive about these ponies is their bone, type and athletic nature. Snowgoose (Duntlum's Pride of Erin by Coed Coch Ballog a Criban Victor grandson), dominated the AHSA Medium Pony Hunter circuit for many years. Sons and daughters of  GlanNant Bard have been AHSA/USEF Pony Hunter Champions since the 1990's. For many years ponies related to Criban Victor have been in the AHSA/USEF top ten Welsh Pleasure Pony including the 1979 winner of Section B Welsh Pleasure Pony, Timbercreek Morning Mist by Lithgow Grenadier (Criban Victor grandson) and the 1985 winner of Welsh Pleasure Driving, Bristol Salome (Cusop Sheriff and Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad granddaughter and great granddaughter of Coed Coch Ballog). Perhaps more than any other stallion, Criban Victor has carried on the true legacy of the Criban stud.

Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad, a Criban Victor son, has left a lasting mark on Section B breeding. Dr. Wynne Davis has devoted a whole chapter of his book to Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad. Even though Blaen Lleuad only spent three mature years in the U.K. his sons and daughters changed Welsh Section B breeding throughout the world. At the 1959 Coed Coch Sale that Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad was sold at, Mr. Eckley of Cusop Stud bid on Blaen Lleuad almost until the gavel landed for the last time. Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad sold for 320 guineas which though little by today's standards was a great deal for pony in those days. The history of Section B ponies would have to be re-written if Coed Coch Blaen Lleuad had stayed in the UK. where he could have seen the best of Section B mares. It couldn't have been anticipated that Blaen Lleuad would be such an outstanding sire and would be lost forever to the British Section B breeders.

Two daughters of Blaen Lleuad were retained by Coed Coch and produced the noteworthy stallion Coed Coch Pedestr (Mynd Stud) and the dam of the Royal Welsh winner Coed Coch Targed. Blaen Lleuad also sired Coed Coch Pawl (3350) (x Coed Coch Pluen) sire of the Royal Welsh Winner Cusop Banknote, and Rhyd-Y-Felin Selwyn (2720) (x Rhyd-Y-Felin Seren Wyb) who was sold to Sweden and then re-imported by Mrs. Mountain of Twyford Stud and now lives with the Buckett's at Moorsfield Stud on the Isle of Wright.

There were three living Criban Victor sons standing at stud in the U.K. The oldest of these Gorsty Firefly (4963) (Gorsty Dusk (12951) was born in 1965. Firefly is not only a Criban Victor son but his great≠dam was also by Criban Victor! Burstye Flavius (5678) (Burstye Minerva (8078-F.S. 2) was a bay stallion born in 1966. Flavius' dam was by Clan Tony and combines some interesting Section A breeding. To the best of my knowledge the last son of Criban Victor is Wharley Taliesin (10793) (Rawthey Top Note (14623)) a grey stallion born in 1971. Rawley Top Note was by Pendock Zenith who was out of Pendock Stud's foundation mare Pendock Bluebell.

Gorsty Firefly (Criban Victor x Gorsty Dusk) at 18 years in the UK

Burstye Flavius (Criban Victor x Burstye Minerva) UK

The last son of Criban Victor Wharley Taliesin (x Rawthey Top Note) F. 1971 at the Plush Stud, UK

In the USA

Bristol Salome

GlanNant Bard




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