Oryol breed horses

The Oryol trotter is the only breed that emerged in the 18th century, not because "this was the case during historical development", but according to a preliminary compiled list of necessary qualities.

At that time, there was no horse anywhere in the world that could trot for hours. Worn by the proud names of the roadster and the trotter, European horse breeds were heavy, loose and tired quickly. Lighter riding breeds were more adapted to galloping.

This situation worried little Europe. Distances, compared with the Russian Empire, there were small. And what could have been done by the Russians if any European principality could fit in between Moscow and St. Petersburg at that time? For Russian distances, a horse was needed that could move for a long time at a trot, as the galloping jerks spoiled everything that could be spoiled.

At a gallop there is a jerk effort that breaks the shoulders of the horses, loosens the carriage mounts and strongly swayes people. Knowing these problems firsthand, Count Alexei Orlov-Chesmensky seriously thought about breeding his own Russian horse breed, able to tolerate the climatic conditions of different regions of Russia and move for a long time without harnessing the riders. No local Russian horse breeds used at that time for long distance crossings could give such comfort to riders. The only virtue of Vyatok, Mezenok, Kazanok and other local horses was endurance.

The brother of the favorite Catherine the Great had both the means and the place for the foundation of the stud farm. Count Orlov began with the purchase of mares and stallions almost throughout the then famous world. But neither thoroughbred horses, nor their hybrids did not give the desired result. According to Orlov, the desired offspring should have been obtained by crossing heavy, wet Neapolitan and Dutch mares, capable of moving not long for a wide trot with dry and light Arabian stallions.

But where were those stallions taken, if the Arab tribes at that time were selling culling to stupid Europeans. And even this rejection was highly appreciated. And Orlov needed really high-quality manufacturers. Orlov sent scouts everywhere, where he hoped to find the stallions he needed. Unexpectedly, the Russian-Turkish war came to Orlov’s help.

The Mediterranean Russian squadron under the command of Alexei Orlov defeated the Turkish fleet under Chios and Chesme. In the course of the battles, the Turks appreciated the courage and audacity of the Eagle Pasha. A few stallions were sent to Orlov as a gift. After the conclusion of a truce, Orlov came to rumors about a very rare stallion who was led from Arabia to the Ottoman Empire, but, fearing hostilities, was sheltered in Morea, in Greece. Orlov sent there scouts from knowledgeable people. Returning scouts reported that "such a horse has not yet been seen." Orlov immediately wanted to get a stallion in his stable.

Orlov’s offer to sell the horse did not meet with the Sultan. Inflamed Eagles threatened to take the stallion "on the sword." Taught by bitter experience, the Turks understood that the Eagle Pasha was able to fulfill its promise and preferred to “voluntarily” leave the horse. As a result, the stallion was sold to Orlov for an unheard of sum of 60 thousand rubles in silver at that time. It can be considered that the history of the Oryol horse breed began from that moment.

The history of Orlov trotters

The stallion bought was really unique. He had a very long body, and after his death it turned out that instead of 18 vertebrae, this horse had 19 of them. Moreover, the extra vertebra was in the thoracic region and because of him the stallion also had an extra pair of ribs.

On a note! A long hull is needed for a horse-drawn trotting horse to be able to walk a wide free trot.

The stallion got to the estate of Count Orlov only 1.5 years after the purchase. Fearing the hardships of sea travel, the horse was led around the seas by land. The stallions were led by small crossings, passing only 15 versts a day and gradually transferring from the barley in Arabia to the oats adopted in Russia.

After arriving at the estate, the stallion surprised everyone with its large growth, body length, very beautiful silver-white hair and very affectionate temper. For the color of wool the horse got the nickname Smetanka.

Interesting! In the picture, the founder of the Oryol breed of horses does not look Arabic, which is why today the hot spores of what breed were smetanka often flare up.

A silvery sheen of wool adds intrigue, since the Arabian horses have no such phenomenon.

Smetanka lived in Russia for less than a year, leaving only 4 stallions and a filly. Versions of his death differ.

According to one version, he could not stand the difficult transition. But 15 - 20 km a day for a healthy horse quite a bit.

According to another version, I could not eat unusual food. But the consequences of eating the wrong feed appear in horses much faster. A smooth transition to a new feed does not have any negative consequences.

According to the third version, the stallion, accustomed to the dry air of Arabia, could not stand the damp Russian climate. And this version already looks believable. Today, aboriginal horses from places far from civilization confirm this version, becoming ill with chronic airway obstruction if brought to the city.

According to the fourth version, Smetanka zazhrebtsoval near the watering hole, seeing the mare, slipped, fell and hit the back of his head against the corner of a wooden deck. It could also be on slippery ground.

Surely only one thing is known: after the death of Smetanka, his stableman hanged himself on the reins.

Polkan I

The history of the Orlov trotter was the son of Smetanka, born of a dutch mare, Polkan I. This stallion was not yet the ideal of the intended breed, but the Leopard I was born from him and the gray Dutch mare, fully in line with Orlov’s dreams.

Leopard I

In Barca I, even in modern times, height (166 cm) was combined with strength and a beautiful frisky trot. The desired type of future Oryol trotting horse breed was found. Now it had to be fixed. In 7 years, Barca was sent to the plant, where he produced for 17 years. The genealogies of all modern Orlov and Russian trotters go back to Bars.

The ideal of Count Orlov was born gray. Since the leopard was used very actively, the gray suit is very common among Orlov trotters today.

On a note! Many even believe that the Oryol horse can only be gray.

There is also an inverse relationship: if gray, then Oryol trotter.

The joint efforts of Count Orlov and his assistant V.I. Shishkin managed to secure the necessary type of lightweight horse. To improve the productive characteristics of the Oryol trotting breed of horses, a system of training and testing of young stock was thought out, which made it possible to correctly evaluate the young stock when selecting for a tribe.

Interesting! Orlov, who did not like him, sold the horses, having previously emasculated the stallions and covered the mare with a stallion of a different breed.

Then they firmly believed in telegony (superstition is still alive) and believed that if a mare is covered with an unsuitable stallion, she will never bring a purebred foal.

The development of racing

Even before the introduction of Orlov races, in the winter, on the ice of the Moskva River, national “trips” were held, where owners of high-class horses showed off their animals. Orlov turned these trips not into casual games, but into systematic trials of young animals for agility. The races began to quickly gain popularity, and it turned out that no one else could compete in speed with the Orlov trotter. In Russia, a new breed of fairly massive, elegant, lightweight horses has emerged. Orlov trotters were in demand not only throughout Europe but also in the United States.

Decay of Oryol breed

As planned by the count, the Orlov trotter is a horse that can be used both in the cart and under the governor. But in order to haul carts, you need to have a massive bones and considerable muscle mass. Initially, the Orlov trotters had thick forms and large growth. Photo Orlovsky trotter Barchuk, made in 1912 confirms this.

Such a horse will easily carry the cart, but due to the mass it is unlikely to be very fast. In the meantime, the United States brought out their breed of trotters, the only criterion for the success of which was the finishing pole. Therefore, when at the very beginning of the twentieth century, small but very fast American trotters were brought from Russia to the United States, Orlovsky began to lose ground. He could not compete with imported horses. Wanting to get the winnings, the owners of the Orlov trotters began to cross them with the Americans. Metalization has reached such proportions that it seriously began to threaten the Orlov trotter as a breed of horses.

Before the appearance of the Fortress, who proved that the Oryol breed had not yet reached the limits of increasing playfulness. Soon, closed runs for the Oryol breed and open prizes for trotters of any breed were introduced.


Oryol breed quite successfully survived the Revolution and the Civil War. Tribal work with her was centralized and became more productive. The half breeds with American trotters were singled out in a separate breed, called the Russian trotter. In the Soviet Union, the Oryol breed was used as an improver for local native horses and purebred livestock. Even the Altai mountain horses were improved by trotters. After the Second World War and until the collapse of the Union, the Orlov trotters were the most numerous factory breed in the country.

The second decline in the history of the Oryol breed of horses occurred in the 90s of the last century. The livestock has declined to a critical point. There are 800 heads of purebred Oryol queens, while for normal breed development at least 1000 are needed.

The current state of the breed

Fans and admirers of the Oryol breed “pulled” the orlovtsa from the “pit” into which the economic collapse threw him. Today, the Oryol breed is again one of the most numerous and is not threatened by anything, except for the possible loss of the old type and the acquisition of similarities with the Russian and American trotters.

Interesting! Not far from Moscow there is a private farm breeding the Oryol trotters of the old type.

But these trotters of the Oryol trotter breed do not even make sense to test on the racetrack. They significantly lose the speed of their more modern counterparts.


In the color palette of Oryol trotters there are almost all the suits common on the European continent. The most common is gray. The gene of graying hides under a colored base, and a gray horse with a foal could be a crow, a bay, a red, a buckthorn, a salt, ash-crow. A suit can be found in the pedigree of the trotters as “red-gray”. In fact, the certificate was written out when the horse had not yet turned gray. The final result of graying is always a light gray horse color. What is popularly called white.

Since the origin of the Oryol trotters begins with the dunes of the Danish mare, the Cremello gene is present in the breed. Until recently, this suit was either not common in the Oryol breed, or was hidden under a gray suit. Before the appearance in Ukraine of the Orlovsky Levkoi buckwheat. The stallion showed good results on trial and was sold to the Chesmensky stud. From him went buckskin trotters. In the photo of the Oryol trotters race, the horse in the foreground is a molybdenum dun from the dusk Shine. Glitter got the suit from his father Levkoy.


Like all prize trotters of trotters, the exterior of the orlovtsa today is quite diverse. Common features:

  • long body;
  • strong neck of medium length;
  • medium sized head (can vary from arabized to “suitcase”);
  • limbs with the correct position, well muscled;
  • strong tendons;
  • good hoof horn.
On a note! The trotters are famous for their strong legs.

Runs are held on a fairly hard ground, and in winter on an icy track. Therefore, the strength of the legs - the key to saving life for the horse.


For the most part, Oryol trotters are distinguished by appeasable, good-natured temperament. Crocodiles can also be found among them, but this is often due to poor treatment. The horse is protected. In any case, experienced people should work with such a horse.

All trotters, including "crocodiles", are distinguished by their honesty in their work. They were so selected: to give all of themselves and a little more from above. But this honesty plays against them, since with unbearable demands the trotter is crippled. And sometimes cripples and rider.


The main area of ​​modern use of the trotter of any breed is running. In Russia, the tote is poorly developed, otherwise it would be a very profitable industry.

Orlov trotter - horse of universal application. They are not very fond of dressage due to the specific four-stroke "trot" gallop. But not all trotters walk at such a gallop. In addition, it is corrected. Though as an exception, the Orlov trotter reached the Olympic Games. In the photo is the horse of the Oryol breed Balagur under the saddle of Alexandra Korelova.

In jumping, the Orlov trotter is capable of jumping well over low and medium heights. But more is not required of him. He will climb, he is honest. And crippled. The best option if he will teach novice riders to jump.

Not bad carries his master trotter on horseback rides in the fields, as you can see in this photo Oryol horse.

But sometimes the Orlov trotter can play around.


Lyudmila Gorodnicheva, Moscow. I bought myself an Orlov trotter with the TsMI. Not ran trotters there often sell for a penny. I had to retrain him in order to learn to bend and not rush ahead, but now I can safely ride it through the fields. In my opinion, this is how a cheap universal horse Orlov trotter is perfect. Elena Sokolova, Voskresensk. As a fan of the Orlov breed I keep only trotters of this breed. I am satisfied that I can harness a trotter in a sleigh or cart and bring something around the house, and if I want to ride it. Of course, all this can be done on any mongrel horse, but at the trotter sensations are better. Besides, the trotter has never let me down.


Due to the fact that the Oryol trotter breed is very widespread in Russia, the cost of non-breeding Oryol horses is low. And the versatility of application and docile nature makes the Orlov trotter an indispensable horse for beginners.