Skippers Zane - was born in 1991, bred and raised by Hank Wiescamp, Alamosa, CO. He was an extensive line bred Skipper W and exactly what Hank had planned for his whole long life time. You could always tell who Hank's favorite was due to placement on stud row -- his favorite would be in the first paddock. Hank had over 50 stud pens all made from pine poles native to the area. Hank's nutrition was simple, pure alfalfa hay for a lifetime, never seeing the bottom of the pine pole hay racks.
Skipper Zane, in the first paddock, was by Skippers Ring and out of Skips Agree. In order to continue the unique line bred Old Fred program Hank used nearly all of the 50 stallions held in ready reserve. There might be only one or two mares bred to a certain stud, but there would be a reason in Hank's mind for that mating. Over the years hundreds of great horsemen tried to buy Skipper Zane -- all unsuccessful but one.
When Hank passed at the ripe age of 91 the family promptly dispersed the hundreds of Quarter, Paint and Appaloosa breeding stock. It was a massive event attended by over 1000 people from the USA and many foreign countries. It was the right thing for the family to do because no one could figure how to continue with the brilliant genetic scheme Hank had developed. The consistency was unbelievable and the type was like no other planned program in history.
My dad (Frank) attended with his friend Milt Banks. Dad talked about the Wiescamp sale until he passed at age 88. I did not attend as we were developing the Appalachian Texas Longhorn ranch division in Ohio.
Some one from Salt Lake bought Skippers Zane for $400,000. He was the "take your breath away" event of the Quarter Horse year. Other than an injury on his right hind leg he was the picture of perfection and a rich chestnut color that shined like a new minted coin.
When going through Utah I called the folks who bought Skippers Zane. I needed to see him. I had heard so much. I think I did not get to talk to the owner, it was someone who worked with the horses. I tried to encourage them to do a serious photo shoot and they were not interested. I was going to be there. My heart was in it. They said no. I was barely able to talk them into "letting" me snap a few shots. They did not know me and I did not know them and it has stayed that way.
I drove in from the north somewhere around the east side of the Great Salt Lake and there on the edge of the Salt Flat was real nice barns, some white fence and an attractive horse place. They had some grass which I wondered how it grew in a serious bed of salt mixed soil. I ask them to let me take a few photos of Skippers Zane. A fellow dressed in a golf caddy costume put a nylon halter on the $400,000 prize stallion, led him a few feet from the barn and said...... shoot.
It was obvious I had an interest in Skipper Zane. They offered no sales pitch, no post cards, no promotional materials. I drove away.
Buying a $400,000 horse is buying a serious business. There needs to be a business plan. I see it in all forms of emotional purchases -- especially with Texas Longhorns. It is like, "buy a great stallion and they will come." As I have written 91 bios on mostly stallions, only a few had owners with a valid plan. Only a few stallions had owners who had a clue what to do with their new investment business. Many can buy a $400,000 horse, but like the proverbial dog who loved to chase cars -- what do you do when you catch one????
Author: Darol Dickinson