As for the connection to India, I’ll let Wikipedia explain:
Vahana (Sanskrit: वाहन, Vāhana, literally “that which carries, that which pulls”) denotes the being, typically an animal or mythical entity, a particular Hindu deity is said to use as a vehicle. In this capacity, the vahana is often called the deity’s “mount” […] The vahana and deity to which they support are in a reciprocal relationship. Vahana serve and are served in turn by those who engage them. Many vahana may also have divine powers or a divine history of their own.He’s basically supposed to represent a horse glorious and powerful enough to carry a Hindu deity. Judging from the almost-reverential reaction to him, I think they nailed the concept! So I doubt that they’ll do multiple mane/tail options or the Gloss/Matte split on it: Vahana won’t need any help selling out.
I haven’t a Shannondell in person yet (and judging from the prices, I’ve been seeing them go for, it’ll be a while) but I think I prefer the braided version anyway.
I still think I’m sticking to my one-ticket plan this year, but if this is just the start of the Special Run parade, I might be in trouble.
I wasn’t too crazy about the cutesy stunt they used to “reveal” it, though, or the fact that they were redirecting people to visit their Facebook page for the news. I think the world – not just the model horse world, but the world-world – would be better served if more people were encouraged to venture off of Facebook, not on.