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Tamarillo has Been Cloned!

19 September, 2013

Brilliant, elegant and quirky, Tamarillo won Badminton and Burghley and represented Britain three times with William Fox-Pitt. Now, his genetic double has been created to extend his breeding line. Martha Terry reports

A three-month-old colt skitters round a field. A flashy bright bay, he scoots off then spins back to suckle his mother–a big-boned palomino, who is clearly no blood relation. Workers at the farm stop what they are doing to watch as the flamboyant colt floats past. He is so clearly sensational; the whispers grow that he must be the clone of a great horse. But who?

The Hon Finn and MW Guinness have managed to keep Tamarillo’s clone under wraps until today. Even those at his current New Jersey farm–where he is staying until “he comes home” to Biddesden Stud where Tamarillo himself was raised–are in the dark.

“We’ve been talking about cloning Tamarillo for years,” says MW Guinness, whose husband Finn has a PhD in epigenetics and tried to clone mammals himself in the 1960s, 30 years before Dolly the sheep finally appeared. “We kept it secrect because we wanted to wait until the foal was on the ground.”

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