Saving the Raja’s Horse

British horsewoman Francesca Kelly brings India’s fiery Marwari to the United States in hopes of reviving the breed

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Kelly goes to India about three times a year now, and in early 2004, at the National Indigenous Horse Show (in Jaipur), she saw an encouraging sight: middle-class breeders, as well as royals and tribal horse traders, coming from all over Rajasthan to participate. She plans to sell her property in Chappaquiddick, mostly because it’s too isolated to be a useful headquarters. She’s looking for a place in California.

The obstacles she faces in establishing the Marwari in the United States are daunting. Previous examples of successful transplantation of new breeds such as the Andalusian, were well established long before they were introduced to America. “I don’t really have a master plan,” Kelly told me. “If you feel strongly about something, if you have these dreams, you’ve just got to work toward manifesting them. And I know it will happen, because I always hold out for things that I want, and, eventually, it falls into place.”


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