Congress Show

Discussion in 'Pony Talk' started by Mini Gaits Farm, Aug 6, 2010.

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  1. Aug 9, 2010 #41

    Mellis815

    Mellis815

    Mellis815

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    Sherri, yes the forum took a bit of a steamed up turn. And for the record, no, most pony people are decent and I used the comments on this thread as my basis for my earlier post.

    Infact, we have several friends who are (four letters here) "pony" people (inside joke) who we love, but as always, we have our stable mini friends as well. We have been showing for almost 30 years in the mini industry and we have seen it all, from cowboy tex bringing out his western attire to show his "stud" to what the AMHA/AMHR industry is now, including the ponies that are shown at mini shows, and let me tell ya, some of them are down right scary to be around, and I am NOT a newbie around horses.

    One example is at a show in Ionia, there was a pony that had to come out with blindfolds on, chains around her feet, 2-3 handlers and people shaking cans with rocks in them to keep the hrose "animated" and then wonders why that horse will not stay in it's stall unless it's tied.. thats just CRAZY! (Thats why I called them hot headed.)

    Another example: a pony is in a driving class at a show I have attended, and everyone and I mean EVERYONE has to be aware that they are entering the arena becuase they scream "pony coming through, Pony coming through! watch out!"...well, us "mini" people are not ignorant, probably not going to run out infront of a horse, any horse for that matter, however those owners know that their pony could freak out at any moment and therefore have to make sure the entire makeup arena knows they are around. this isn't my opinion, this is what I have seen with my own eyes.

    Now, I know all ponies aren't like this, just like all mini people aren't "ignorant" to the pony/mini cross, some just don't want it. Thats all. Some do, some don't and I am a don't person.

    Sorry for any hard feelings, Just wanted to get my 2 cents in.
     
  2. Aug 9, 2010 #42

    Mini Gaits Farm

    Mini Gaits Farm

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    Thanks to you all for your kind responses to this post. John...I feel like I have so much to say...I only wish that I could phrase my feelings as perfectly as you do. In my honest opinion, I do believe that the progression of the miniature breed is very important. I most certainly believe that crossing AMHR/ASPC into the breed could create some phenomonal horses. I have done some research since my initial post and it appears that a lot of the more serious, most successful, longtime breeders have decided to do this. I never gave shetlands much of a thought, until now, simply because I had never had much exposure to them. I am actually very thankful that the show was offered online this year and even more thankful that I tuned in. For the first time, in a long time, I am excited, because I certainly can see us adding at least an AMHR/ASPC stallion to our herd in the future.

    Kay...thanks so much for your offer. You are not really that far away and I would love to visit sometime. I absolutely love your stallion...he is amazing.

    Lewella....thank you so much for posting for Amy....I don't know them, but their accomplishments speak for themselves. I don't believe that breeding "great" horses over and over again is merely "luck"....it is horsemanship of the highest caliber and in turn deserves the utmost of respect. Their horses are very inspiring, to say the least.

    Although I initially felt like a child walking across the neighbors lawn and he yelled out "get out of here!!!" when my post was moved from the mini forum, I am thankful that it was moved here. I now realize that this is the part of the forum that I belong to. I know it is our nature "as humans" to fight change....but this is the kind of change that could easily seperate the men from the boys.

    I will anxiously be awaiting any photos of your current or future foals from these crosses. [​IMG]
     
  3. Aug 9, 2010 #43

    Mini Gaits Farm

    Mini Gaits Farm

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    Absolutely no hard feelings at all Mellis. I certainly can respect your feelings. I love my minis and certainly don't want my entire herd to change. I think however, that an outcross into this line with some of my minis could be nice. I also realize that they would be AMHR registered only. We have mostly had dual registered minis for our entire tenure with the breed. I have never attended a pony show, but have been to several mini shows and even the AMHA World Show twice. I have however had horses for as long as I can remember. When I was a child, I wanted a foal more than anything.....I had a welch pony and begged my grandfather to get her bred for me. Well his friend had a thorobred stallion....keep in mind that my mare was only about 11 hands tall and the stallion was about 15 hands....now the mini people are going to "gasp" at that.....and maybe it wasn't right....but thank God it all worked out.....I got the best pony filly in the world from that cross.....she had the temperment of the thorobred and was fast as lightning.....I actually made lots of money around the county fairs racing her against several quarter horses. They would all laugh when they saw her small size and refinement....but she could "fly".....because I did race her so much....she was "on her toes" most of them time. But when I put her away in her stall and loved on her...she was a different horse. She was my favorite horse "ever"...I was only eleven when she was born and still remember it like it was yesterday...that has been many years ago....LOL I guess I am saying this because really "any" horse can be made to act "hot" and I guess that is what showing the shetlands is about. I also spent many years on the racetrack with thorobreds and for the most part, they are high strung...especially those with the trainers that use lots of steriods. Some trainers use lots of it and the ones that are thinking of their stock as future breeding animals refuse to use it....but I worked for one that did use lots of it.....those stallions would grab your coat and pick you up off the ground before you knew it....then I went to work for a man that didn't use any....it took me awhile to realize that his horses weren't "sick" at all.....they just weren't on the steroids....they were quite a calm group in comparison. I don't want my horses "crazy" by any means, but with my background...I actually find a little "fire" appealing. I have a yearling son of Sierra Dawn Uno De Mayo.....he is gorgeous to look at....but honestly has "no presence"....I have not played with him....he is just a kind, sweet boy that I can't even scare enough life into to get a good photo to be quite honest. My mini line with the most attitude and presence is without a doubt the Buckeroo line. They are minis, but have presence and attitude. I "love" that.

    Again...I respect everyones opinion because we as owners and breeders put lots of time, thought, money...etc....into our herds and we deserve to breed the "type" of horses that we want to own. I just don't see anything wrong with trying something a little different....especially when the thought of it is as exciting as I find it to be.
     
  4. Aug 10, 2010 #44

    Minimor

    Minimor

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    By hot headed do you mean the pony or the handler??
    I have to ask—how many minis do you think would remain quiet and placid if you subjected them to the same treatment as you describe as above? I would bet that a good many of them would be pretty wired too, if you did all that to them. Some of mine, maybe most of them, would have a nervous breakdown if I handled them that way…and there isn’t a one of mine that has a Shetland within 5 generations (if not more).
     
  5. Aug 10, 2010 #45

    ~Lisa~

    ~Lisa~

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    WOW interesting to see how quickly this thread took some turns - I frankly see nothing wrong with mentioning that this post belonged on the pony part of the forum. That is after all why we have different forums.

    To the OP glad you got your question answered. The best advice I have if interested in ponies is to speak to people and farms you see at shows or in your area. We all have to remember that the "world" you see on forums is really such a small portion of the "pony" world.

    There is a lot to learn and many people out there showing their ponies who are very willing to help and answer questions
     
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  6. Aug 10, 2010 #46

    TomEHawk

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    As the trainer of mare in question, her name is RFP River Of Time, or barn name "Wynonna". Wy is a 16 year old first time broodmare. She is one of only 2 mares in the ASPC history that has won the Modern Mare Grand Championship at the Congress. Wy is a 4 time Congress Grand Champion, 5 time Liberty champion, many time youth & amateur halter champion & driving champion. The stallion that is also in question is RFP Timed To Perfection, or barn name "Beaver". Beaver did win the Modern Under Harness Stake. Beaver is ASPC/AMHR registered, but he's not the only one out of this bloodline that is. A full blooded brother, RFP 6/8 Time is as well. Also, these are not the only Congress Champions out of this line. RFP 6/8 Time is a 3 time Harness Stake Champion, RFP It's About Time is a Harness Stake Champion & Modern Mare Grand Champion, RFP River Of Time is a 4 time Modern Mare Grand Champion, RFP The Time Has Come is a 2 time Gelding Grand Champion, & now RFP Timed To Perfection is a Harness Stake Champion. These are all full blooded siblings. The Roberts Family have produced many other Congress grand & stakes champions. If anybody has any questions about breeding to Beaver, (as he is open for next year), or buying a great new show horse from this outstanding farm, contact me & I'll see what they have for you.
     
  7. Aug 10, 2010 #47

    TomEHawk

    TomEHawk

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    WOW! I just went back and read a few more post. I have to tell you, for those that believe that Shetlands or moderns in particular are hot headed really needed to watch the classic open hunter in hand class when my son showed our 12 year old breeding stallion and former Congress Grand Champion Modern stallion, D&S Tom E. Hawk, without any problems. As we were standing in the warm up area, my wife, son & I all received comments on how calm and relaxed an old breeding stallion was behaving. If there is any more questions on how these ponies are hot headed, you are welcome to come watch as my son drive RFP Timed To Perfection who is a stallion and has bred mares. Not only has my son shown and won with many moderns in halter & performance classes, many other families have had children showing moderns for many years. I'm pretty sure that if you'd tell Dr. Tom Taylor or Abbie Smith of Taylor Pony Farm about moderns or Shetlands in general being hot headed, you might get an ear full. Some bloodline might be a little hotter than others and some ponies might be trained to be a little hotter than others, but this can be said of some miniatures as well. I don't hear about the miniatures being hot headed. As a breed, the Shetlands are easily work able and are very eager to please. I can that the RFP bred ponies are among the easiest and most owner pleasing ponies I've ever had the opportunity to work with.
     
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  8. Aug 10, 2010 #48

    muffntuf

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    I too am astounded at the picture you painted in regards to the pony being blind folded, shackled, and rocks used to animate the pony. I would feel bad for that pony. I don't know of anyone in my showing circle, including Congress that would go to such measures to animate a pony.

    I have everything from Classics to American Show Ponies and none of them are hot like you describe. They are all willing to please, work hard and try to show their best for me at all shows, without aids like you describe.

    SO whomever you are describing as doing this, I wonder if they knew what they were doing, really.
     
  9. Aug 10, 2010 #49

    ahrobertspony

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    Absolutely .... You'll see Modern exhibitors hoop and hollar w/ their ponies. The ponies respond to that. You'll also see us exhibitors shout "heads up" on the shoot into the ring because once the pony is in the "zone", you lose something if you have to stop and start again because someone mistakenly wonders out in front of you. I saw it the first day at Congress this year with the Futurity driving classes intermixed w/ halter classes. Non-driving people were standing too close to the shoot waiting for their next halter class and you could tell by the look on some's faces that they had no clue what the term "heads up" meant. It's not about the pony freaking out ... it's about getting the pony into the ring with its game face still on rather than having been distracted by someone standing around in the way ... exactly like they were doing at Congress this year the first day. Luckily, they bystanders caught on pretty quickly.

    Lesson ... the pop cans et all ... not about the motion or animation. It's more about keeping a pony up in the bridle and keeping them expressive to go along w/ their motion and animation. The method has been around a long, long, long time. It's certainly more humane than many other measures. You can't animate a pony that doesn't have the talent to begin with ... at least not for any length of time.

    Regarding the liberty pony that started this topic: My most FAVORITE pic of this mare is of my little bitty 4 yr. old daughter leading her to the ring on year at Congress ... the mare's head was down at Doodle's level as they plodded along quietly and safely to the ring, despite the fact the mare had her tail and show bridle on. You would not have recognized her as the same pony a scant 2-3 minutes later tearing down the rail once the adults took a hold of her and headed into the ring. Did we do anything to her in the make-up ring? NOPE! I just popped my whip against my leg a couple of times to make sound. Again, SOUND is a key. Don't kid yourself ... Moderns can be some of the absolutely most WILLING equine to work around. Good ones KNOW the difference between business time and all the rest of the time. Sound is the cue we've chosen to give them rather than anything physical.

    This liberty mare had a 2 month old foal standing back in the stall during that liberty run. By all rights, she probably should have gone to the gait and called for him. In fact, our trainer recommended we not enter her in liberty as he was afraid she might not perform. However, we'd seen her give her all in her halter wins earlier that day. We knew she would know it was time to get her game face on. And that is EXACTLY what she did. She KNEW she was at a show in the spotlight and she did her job. Why ... music and crowd noise. Again ... note the theme... SOUND. These ponies are like that. It's what they were bred to do. In addition to being performers, RFP ponies are also bred to be pleasers. Youth of various ages work w/ every one of our show ponies in some fashion. After that impressive liberty win, I'd have handed that mare off to my 8 year old to lead back to the barn in a heart beat... and you might not have known it was the same pony. She's won many, many leadline classes and many youth halter classes .... and pulled a fancy turnout rig.

    Have we hooped and hollered or shaken a pop can going into an open class or a driving class with adults? You betcha. Still,none of these particular ponies that had to be tied in their stalls. And, I wouldn't hesitate for even a fraction of a millisecond to hand a mare like this off to either of my kids. In fact .... my kids are the reason we raise these ponies today.

    Don't equate brilliance and desire to show w/ CRAZY. Every single one of you who does that does a complete disservice to these ponies. Yes, there are some crazy ones out there just like there are in EVERY single breed, division, etc. But, having done this more than 30 years, I can assure you .... THEY are the MINORITY. And, they are just as likely to be the product of bad handling as bad breeding.

    Anyone is welcome to come by anytime ... walk out into my pasture of Modern broodmares and feed them treats. The only crappy personality is the double registered Classic/Mini mare & you'll have to run her into a corner to catch her. The Modern Mares ... good luck getting away from them as they'll be in your pocket. You are also welcome to crawl into a stall w/ either of our Modern breeding stallions. And for sure, our show mares like this liberty mare would love to have some treats and hugs & loving .... it's what the live for ... that and performing for the few minutes at any show when they called on to do so. 90 seconds of liberty and 20 total minutes of performing in halter about 3-4 times a year in exchange for fans, ample feed, brushing, immediate vet care at the slightest inkling something might not be right, treats out of the pockets of kids & adults alike, bedded stalls, time turned out, the right exercise and as much fawning & loving as we can manage.

    You know ... I'd trade places with ANY of MY ponies any day of the week.
     
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  10. Aug 10, 2010 #50

    Mellis815

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    good point, infact I was watching the shetland congress and I couldn't believe my eyes. here they bring out this pony, 2 handlers, one sets up the horse, and tries to get it to stand still while the other handler is jumping and flailing their arms in front of it with a whip acting "spastic" to try to get the horse animated. Then they take the pony out, and run it both directions while chasing it with a whip and then they take him back to the line up again and once again, ask him to stand...call me crazy..but I think my minis would look at me like I was effin nuts if I did this, and they wonder why the ponies act the way they do.
     
  11. Aug 10, 2010 #51

    Mellis815

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    Jason, yes not ALL ponies are hot headed, I will take that back, but a number of them are, at least the ones that I have encountered. The people that commented on how calm your pony was probably thinks the same way I do, its unusual. Glad you had the skills to train your pony correctly as well as your son, it's definately a team effort to get any horse trained and safe enough for a child! Congrats to your son!
     
  12. Aug 10, 2010 #52

    JWC sr.

    JWC sr.

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    Well as a relatively new convert to the Shetlands (three years) after being in mini's since 1982. I can only tell you the following as far as hot Shetlands are concerned.

    First and foremost let me say we have had 7 of our 10 grandkids that have showed on and off for he last 10 -12 years with our mini's. Now days we only have 3 or 4 that have not moved on to sports, boys/girls and other teenage things. Of those kids that are still showing, 3 of them have shown and done well with the Shetlands we have. All are Classic's and/or foundation bred horses. We still maintain the herd of mini's and always will, but the Shetlands caught us by surprise. [​IMG]

    At first they were all intimidated with the larger size of the Shetlands,but without any pushing from us they all gravitated to different horses and got over that very quickly. Now the comments you hear from them are how much fun they are, how intelligent they are, easy to train and eager to please. They really really enjoy the experience with the Shetlands. A win win for the kids and the horses. [​IMG]

    We own two Shetland stallions and the oldest "JC's Rambo" is about as calm as horse as I have ever seen in a Sr stallion. The kids love him and Megan the next to oldest wants to show him next year so bad she can't stand herself. We will see about that, as I want him to be breeding mares not being in the show ring. [​IMG]

    Before anyone asks why don't you have any moderns in your herd of Shetlands. It is pretty simple really, we love the heads and body conformation of the classics is the only reason. The moderns tend to have a little longer head than what we like, so we went with the classics. Maybe someday we will own moderns, but right now we have enough horses. LOL [​IMG]

    I think that in any breed of horse you will of course have individuals that have different dispositions, some more animated, some more laid back, but a lot of the disposition you see is a result of training and/or the lack of it in some cases. [​IMG]

    Bottom line for us is that we love the look and presence of the Shetlands we have, enjoy them immensely and at the same time still have a very private part of our soul that is reserved for our herd of mini's. They have done well for us, helped make ladies and gentlemen out of our grandkids, taught them a lot and helped them become the kids we know and love. [​IMG]

    Over the years we have had numerous National and World Champions grace our farm and now with the Shetlands we have been lucky enough to have the same kind of results. Kind of cool for us as breeders and grandparents to say the least. [​IMG]
     
  13. Aug 10, 2010 #53

    TomEHawk

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    Missy you still seem to be stuck on the fact that good, calm & well behaved Shetlands are a rarity. I assure you that they are not. You can come to my farm and I can hitch a pony that hasn't been hithced in 6 years and that pony will drive just fine for you. As a matter of fact, I did just that earlier this year at a show with a stallion that I bred to a mare minutes before I loaded on the trailer for a show, then took this stallion I hadn't driven in 4 years at either a show or at home and drove him in the show ring and won the classes. Now, this stallion wasn't a 16 year old stallion that had been driven for alot of years prior, this is a 7 year old stallion that drove his 3 year old year for futurity and hadn't been driven since. If this pony was "hot headed" or crazy, I would not have been able to do this. I can do this with almost every pony in the barn. Again, I can take the mare that started this thread, with foal on her side and hasn't been driven in a year & I'll bet you she won't miss a lick. Missy if the ponies you've had dealings with have been "hot headed" or crazy, you've dealt with one of the very few bloodlines that produce hot headed ponies or like Amy stated, it was all man made. By the way Amy, I'm glad I was wrong. It doesn't happen often.
     
  14. Aug 11, 2010 #54

    txminipinto

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    I agree with Jason. Most ponies are cool and level headed. There are a few bloodlines that produce a hotter horse but if you know who they are you can avoid them. Since they are current lines, I won't out them here on a forum but if you would like to know which ones I would avoid temperment wise I would be glad to give you my private advice. They aren't bad ponies, they just require more attention when handling.
     
  15. Aug 11, 2010 #55

    Leeana

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    As far as "hot", I own several Classics, foundations and a modern pleasure colt.....I do not consider any of them to be "hot"..I think they just in general have more personality and are a bit more "alert" then the miniature breed in general. If I wanted to show quarter horses then I would show quarter horses with their head down, that is just "boring" to me. My ponies have their antics at times, just like most of the miniatures I have owned and shown...the ponies are not mean spirited, they have always been the ponies that I have bonded with the most. Part of the reason that I am selling all my miniatures and going to the straight ASPC ponies is when I owned 11 miniatures and 3 shetlands....my favorites of them all was the three shetlands.
     
  16. Aug 11, 2010 #56

    Crabtree Farm

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    Another fact is that you don't pick ponies, they pick you. They can favor one person and really bond. And when they do, it is really a special bond. But in the same token "some" ponies may not like you. Either you "click" or you don't. And when a pony doesn't click, that may be were people find a dislike for them. But that is ok. It is like dating and breaking up, it just not meant to be.
     
  17. Aug 11, 2010 #57

    ~Lisa~

    ~Lisa~

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    This is true of most horses and in fact most animals not something special to ponies lol

    As far as getting them going prior to the class well I have been guilty of doing that with a couple of my minis be it prior to a halter class or a performance class. Sometimes they need a little oommph prior to going in the ring. Sometimes I have used a can others a whip with a pompom on the end of it sometimes just my voice

    I have 5 minis and 3 ponies of those 3 ponies 2 have some Hackney breeding of those minis one has some Hackney breeding. I have an arenosa mini who frankly is my most unpredictable horse by far. He is not dangerous he is a 36 inch mini lol but sure not one I would hand off to an inexperienced adult or child. Our Sr pony who has been shown as a Modern pleasure pony is a bit energetic at times but always safe as can be- you can not equate energetic with crazy. Granted our yearling is a bit goofy however he is a yearling anda yearling in any breed can be goofy sometimes. They are all kind- sweet and trustworthy horses.
     
  18. Aug 11, 2010 #58

    Lewella

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    To get the collection and animation on the rail that is desired the pony has to be "in the box" - the person with the whip isn't chasing them, they are creating part of "the box". The rail is one side of the box, the handlers hand on the bridle is the front of the box (some will hold a short whip out front to create an even greater box effect), the handler themself is the other side of the box and the tailer is also part of that side and the whip is the back of the box. If any one thing is out of place the box gets out of wack you lose the collection and form on the rail. A good tailer is worth their weight in gold - they knew when to push for added collection and animation, they know when to back off, they can read the pony like a book and get the best performance out of that pony. A TON of training goes into rail work and if a pony is scared you won't get good rail work! What you saw as "spastic" is how these ponies are cued to reach forward with an arched neck and ears up - it is really no different than watching a mini class where (as a friend so aptly put it) "they do the mating dance of the sandhill crane" stomping, blowing, waving their jackets and bobbing to get ears and neck. The only difference is the tailer is the one getting the ears and neck instead of the person on the lead!

    Like everyone else I invite you to come visit my Moderns. They aren't crazy, they aren't hot, they know when it is show time and when it isn't and act accordingly.
     
  19. Aug 11, 2010 #59

    ahrobertspony

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    ABSOLUTELY SPOT ON technical description of how the process works. There really aren't very many truly good tailers out there ... it is an art form that many don't get because it's sure more that chasing behind a pony w/ a whip. The best tailers in the world never so much as use their whip as anything other that a prop in their hand when working the rail.

    I'll take the "modern shetland" method of setting up & modeling over the crazy tango that you often see in the Miniature ring any day of the week. Modeling a Modern can be a lot less taxing than modeling a Mini in a big class.
     
  20. Aug 11, 2010 #60

    muffntuf

    muffntuf

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    It is a true art form to show a modern pleasure, modern or show pony. I have been only working on it for 4 years and have not yet created the 'box' on a consistent basis. But am doing well despite and someday will be as good as Amy or Melissa or Dr. Wahl or a few others in the world of showing moderns and show ponies.

    My 3 year old stallion, you can not even tell he is a stallion. He shows both Modern Pleasure and Show Pony - took Reserve Sr. Champion Show Pony this year at Congress. As we walked out, he pleasantly plodded along, no high stepping or high animation, just a nice plod. Many people ask if he is a gelding and he isn't.

    So I too extend that invitation out to you, come see for yourself!
     

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