Pictured is the Percheron stallion, South Valley Prince Ha Ha. Prince Ha Ha was a double grandson of Justamere Showtime via a half sibling mating of the Showtime offspring, South Valley Ha Ha and South Valley Joyeuse May. South Valley Prince Ha Ha was, in many ways, a horse ahead of his time, and arguably underappreciated in his day. Some breeders found him to be too slab-sided and somewhat sickle hocked. To their point, history would go on to show the horse’s forte was in producing offspring with an uncommon amount of heart, drive and four-corner motion for the era. In addition to siring offspring that would produce the next generation of harness champions, South Valley Prince Ha Ha, himself, sired several tanbark winners within the halter ring.
His get from the mare Midnight Contessa, bred by Mrs. R.L. Robinson, were well received in the show ring during the 1980’s and early 1990’s. His daughter Camille was a Reserve All American and the 1991 National Champion. Her siblings Trophy and Cousteau were All American and Reserve All American stallions, respectively. Cousteau would become a dominant breeding stallion with numerous champion offspring; the best-known of which are the Multi National Champion and Multi All American, Ironwood Beauregard, as well as the All American and World Champion, Glenview Cousteau’s Collette. The South Valley Prince Ha Ha daughters, Windermere’s Lady’s Lucy and Windermere’s Spring Mill, were also All American and 1st Honorable Mention, respectively. Another pair of Prince Ha Ha daughters, named Abbycadabra Kazam and Autumn, found themselves in the broodmare band of Cedarfarms Percherons in Michigan. There the sisters, together, produced the champion lead-team of mares for Cedarfarm Percherons named Cedarfarm Wixom and Cedarfarm Willow (both sired by M.G.’s Black Diamond). A son of Prince Ha Ha, Pennwood’s Fashion’s Spiderman, would go on to become herd sire for Gene Dellinger and sire numerous offspring South of the Mason-Dixon; including the Reserve All American yearling, W.V. Kayla’s Summer Winds, exhibited by the Lawrence Family of Shore Creek Farms. The South Valley Prince Ha Ha daughter, Cassie’s Calliope, was incorporated into the breeding program of Aaron and Gail Rice, where she produced the stallion named Chevron. Chevron produced numerous All American offspring, as well as multiple National Champions. The Chevron son, Briar Hill Trademark, is a multiple All American and National Champion stallion who has now produced All Americans, a National Champion and multiple World Champions of his own. Chevron’s daughter, Kerwin’s Emma, is a past National Champion, multiple-time All American and 2006 Supreme World Champion. She too, has produced All American offspring.
Three South Valley Prince Ha Ha sons have become well-known by reputation, albeit more for their contributions in the breeding barn than their show ring accolades. His son Donamerr’s Magnum, stood for a time at Pennwood’s Percherons of Pennsyvlania. Although he would meet an untimely death, it was not before he sired the stallion, Pennwood’s Cabernet, off of the Robinson bred mare named Champagne; and a daughter, Pennwood’s Magnitude, off the Robinson-bred mare Petal’s Surprise (a granddaughter of South Valley Prince Ha Ha by way of her mother, Spring Petal). Cabernet would find his way to Vermont where he stood at Farnham Percherons and sired F.C Foster, a horse that would become a foundational piece to the Farnham Family’s herd. Pennwood’s Mag-nitude was retained and bred to Pleasant View King, and produced the All American mare named Pennwood’s Evanescence. A second son of South Valley Prince Ha Ha, Clearview Spirit, would establish himself as a sire of public auction bell ringers. Daughters, and gelded sons, of his were found at the top of sale reports for the duration of the early 2000’s. However, it was his in-tact son, the stallion YY Extreme, out of the mare Shady Creek Daisy, (she a daughter of Windsong’s Roulette; a stallion by Blackhome Duke and out of Windsong’s Annie Dragano), that would set the record for highest selling Percheron of all time at public auction, selling for the sum of $105,000.
A third stallion, and possibly the most influential of any Prince Ha Ha son, was Spirit Poseidon. Spirit Poseidon was bred by Mrs. R.L. Robinson of Michigan, and his mother was the mare Spring Princess, making him a full brother to the aforementioned mare, Spring Petal. Poseidon’s dam, Spring Princess, was a daughter of the Justamere Showtime son, South Valley Did-It, out of the mare Princess; thus making her a full sister to the likes of famous Percherons like DID (sire of Mc Gee), Confetti, Blizzard, and Champagne. Spirit Poseidon would stay in Michigan to continue his breeding career at the farm of David and Barb Hardy of Saranac. There, Spirit Poseidon sired their next generation of broodmares. He would also be used by other breeders in the area, including Leo Lutz of Robinlawn Farms. His daughter, Robinlawn Gem, would become one of the family’s best broodmares, producing the Mulitple Reserve All American and 2002 Reserve Senior World Champion Stallion, Robinlawn’s Black Ice- sired by the Blackhome Duke son, Windward’s Torin.
The Hardy Family would retain Poseidon daughters to breed to their up-and-coming World Champion son of M.G.’s Prince, named Sterling’s Thunderstik. Thunderstik crossed quite well with many mares in this band of Prince Ha Ha granddaughters, but with none better than Hardy Farms Tara. Tara produced exceptional home-bred hitch mares for the Hardy Family, including HF Thunder’s Glory, HF Thunder’s Ashley and HF Thunder’s Joy. However, her young sons by the 1995 World Champion, are what quickly put her on other breeders’ radar as one of the elite broodmares of her time. Her son, HF Thunder’s Classic, was a two time All American and the 2002 Reserve Junior World Champion Stallion. Another son of Sterling’s Thunderstik and Hardy Farms Tara, named HF Thunder’s Supreme, was crowned Grand Champion Stallion at the 2004 World Percheron Congress in Brandon, Manitoba, Canada.
As we see with many of the great and prolific breeding horses of the past, South Valley Prince Ha Ha’s legacy was not only sustained, by completely created, by what his breeding sons and daughters have contributed to Percheron history, rather than his own accomplishments in the showring. This consequential stallion serves as a great reminder that horses ahead of their time are often underappreciated; becoming revered more in reminiscence than they were during their lifetimes. Luckily, South Valley Prince Ha Ha proved to be a dominant breeder, as he managed to leave a lasting impact on the breed, and did so despite relatively limited use.