A great day at the show with Champion's Opromiot, Shadofax and Valeska
Established in 1968, the Russkimir kennels were founded on imported European, Russian and UK lines from some of the top bloodlines in the countries of origin. The imports were:
Keepers Prince Arkle (Imp UK) (by the imported Russian dog Boran x Eng Ch Angelola of Enolam)
Australian Ch Korotai Krasivaja Antoniina (Imp Finland) (by Int & Nord Ch Ekhaga Nicolaus x Int & Scand Ch Vasaravuoren Emira)
Australian Ch Falconcrag Jaga (Imp UK) (by Eng Ch Keepers Kwango x Ch K K Antoniina (Imp Finland)
These three related dogs founded a distinctive bloodline whose type, movement and personalities passed down the generations. With the addition of more Falconcrag and Keepers lines to the originals over the years, the Russkimir dogs remained consistant in type. From Ch Russkimir Aristocrat (1975 Hound of the Year in Qld) to the present over 90 champions have been bred including various Specialty, Group and All Breeds Show winners. See pictures of over 40 of these champions in the Photo Albums and Historical Photos. Many of the historical dogs have passed from memory except at home but there were some great dogs in their day who won in heavy competition in breed before going on to Group and Show awards. Ch Russkimir Ermolenko and Ch Russkimir Fialka Fyeya are just two that had great careers and produced winning progeny.
In 1984, an additional line was added from Eng Ch Zomahli Ozopnik (Imp UK) a five times Best in Show winner in the UK, who sired Ch Russkimir Opromiot, seven times winner of Best Male at Specialty shows, sire of twelve champions including Specialty winners and winner of numerous awards at All Breeds Championship shows. Opromiot's outstanding movement was passed onto several of his progeny and still appears in some of his descendants today. The Specialty Best in Show winner Ch Russkimir Yeltzin (a grandson of Opromiot) sired eleven champions in three litters including two Specialty winning daughters. Unfortunately Yeti was lost in an accident just before his prime but his champion granddaughters made their presence felt in the show ring. In recent years, further European and Russian lines have been added to produce an all champion litter including Ch Russkimir Amberdash, Best in Group winner in three States and Royal Best of Breed winner four times. Yeltsin's daughter Ch Russkimir Silver Frost produced the litter sisters Grand Ch Russkimir Frost Fire (6 x Best in Group) and Ch Russkimir Frosted Honey (4 x Best in Group).
The Russkimir line was almost lost during the drought years with no litters conceived and when it finally rained, the few remaining dogs at Russkimir were too old. Many of the winning champions from Yeltzin had died of old age without having any progeny. Only one of his daughters had reproduced in spite of the drought when she was almost 8 years old. The situation was dire. Fortunately, in 2007 the owners of the last two breedable Russkimir bitches allowed them to be leased back for a litter. Ch Russkimir Amber Mist (sister to Amberdash) produced a large litter to Ch Borscana Beowulf (Imp Sweden) (a son of Multi Ch and World Winner Apurva Bistkupstwo (Czech). This "Swedish" litter of 7 champions includes a Best In Group winner and the first male and only the second Borzoi in the country to win his Endurance title. The second leased bitch Ch Russkimir Rainmist (a daughter of Ch Russkimir Silver Frost) was mated to All Breeds Best in Show and Specialty winner Grand Ch Zefna Aramis (a grandson of Eng & Aust Ch Sholwood Sonnet (Imp UK). This produced the famous "River" litter which includes the self red Best in Show winner Ch Russkimir River Rushing. Eight of the eight born in this litter are champions.
In 2008, Ch Vaskes Barguzin (Imp Russia) (a son of Specialty Best in Show winner Russian Grand Ch Vaskes Ugrosa) arrived at Russkimir. His first litter was for Meldham kennels to Ch Borscana Honey Bee Good (Imp Sweden) (also a daughter of Multi Ch Apurva Bistkupstwo) and this produced 4 Meldham champions with a 5th almost to her title before injury. In 2010 Barguzin's first Russkimir litter was born and these "Moscow" youngsters already include 3 champions and a Best in Group winner. After the tragic loss of Grand Ch Russkimir Frost Fire soon after winning her title, the owner of her only sister kindly allowed her to be leased back for a litter. Ch Russkimir Frosted Honey was mated to Barguzin and there are already 3 champions at a very young age with 2 more winners of CCs. Ch Russkimir Vodka N Orange won Best in Group at only 14 months old under an overseas FCI judge and he is also leading for Top Rising Star Borzoi (Puppy/Junior) for Australia in 2011.
A litter bred in 2012 sired by Ch Russkimir River Rapids took the Russkimir line one more generation into the future with more champions, another Best in Group and Specialty winner and some keen lure coursers.
Several Russkimir dogs have engaged in lure coursing for fun. Ch Russkimir Riabchik and Ch Russkimir Mitenka both won Best of Breed Borzoi for their years and Riabchik was also Runner Up Best in Field All Breeds. He followed this with Runner Up Best in Show at the Hound Club Championship Show. Unfortunately the tropical heat of Brisbane has prevented serious coursing. Generally it is too hot to run a Borzoi except on the two coursing days in midwinter.
I am an International All Breeds Championship Judge.
I have also been a lure coursing judge in the past and recently renewed this interest by recommencing judging in 2006.
As historian for the International Borzoi Council, various projects are underway to research and preserve Borzoi history in all countries. To date published books are:
The Australian Borzoi Book - the first hundred years from 1897 to 1998 with over a thousand historical photographs.
Borzoi Database for Great Britain - all Borzoi registrations listed in alphabetical order of dog's name from the 1870's to 2000. Parents, dates of birth and colours included where known. Great for researching pedigrees.
Further Databases are in progress for several European countries with some almost complete.