When hearing "Horses of the Dutch", everyone immediately refers to the Dutch Warmbloods belonging to the KWPN. The term however has to be given a much deeper meaning, and to be understood as well are the two breeds that formed the foundation for the present KWPN, and that are now on the verge of extinction. These two breeds are the Gelderlander and the Groninger Horse. The importance of the two breeds in cultivating the KWPN breed can be clearly seen when examining the bloodlines of KWPN international jumpers or international dressage horses, and finding that many of them carry more than 50% Gelderlander or Groninger blood. We`ll look at the influence the two breeds have had on the Dutch warmblood sport horse population, without going too deep into pedigrees.
Horses of the Dutch: Their history
In the Netherlands, studbooks were started in the beginning of last century. This resulted in one studbook for the provinces Groningen (GrPS), Friesland (FrPS) and Drente (DrPS), combined to the NWP in 1942, and one studbook for the remaining eight provinces of the Netherlands, the NSTg, which was formed out of several smaller studbooks, one of them being the GPS or Gelderlander`s Paarden Stamboek. Up to 1920, the goal of breeding was, comparable to Oldenburg in Germany, a light carriage horse, which besides farm work, could also be used as an elegant carriage horse for the Dutch artillery and for transport. The type of horse can be best illustrated with the mare Bareltina (fig.1), a mare of pure Groninger decent.
In 1925, the NSTg changed the breeding aim towards a heavy warmblood work horse, in coordination with the breeding strategy of Groningen and Oldenburg. A good example is the stallion Kambius (Fig. 2), sired by the heavy Oldenburg stallion Gambo. Several breeders wanting to preserve the light carriage horse, split off and started a new studbook, which was named again GPS. A strong competition between NSTg and GPS was born. Besides native breeding stock, the NWP/NSTg used Oldenburg and East Friesian mares and stallions. In 1939, NSTg and GPS came to an agreement and a new studbook was started, the VLN, which was split into one registry for Gelderlander type (Sgldt), and one registry grouping prior NSTg breeders working in the same line as the Groninger studbook. This one was called breeders of the Groninger type (Sgrt). The difference between the two was to find in the solidness of the horses, of course relating back to the bloodlines used. Whereas the Groninger breeding only accepted foreign bloodlines from Oldenburg, the Gelderlander breeding also accepted other bloodlines, such as Selle Francais and Anglo-Norman. The basic reason for two types of horses, still with the main aim of agricultural use, can be better understood when looking at the type of soil the horses had to work in. The Groningen region was characterized by heavy clay, requiring stronger, heavier horses, whereas other areas had a more sandy soil, allowing for lighter build horses. These lighter build horses are to be found back in both Gelderlander and Groninger. As time progressed, the difference between the two types of horses was slowly erased, also because the Gelderlander studbook accepted all Groninger stallions. All horses were bred towards obtaining usability from a young age and up to high age, health, easy keeping and a good, work willing character. The very restrictive selection process started at the age of three, as soon as horses were ready to start working in agriculture.
An important stallion for the Dutch breeding program was the Holstein stallion Cicero II (1900), who obtained with the NWP the status of preferent, and who produced the stallion Cicero III, sire of the stallion Domburg. Later, Domburg, together with the Groninger decended stallion Ebert and the East Friesian stallion Colonel, became the foundation of the future Gelderland breeding program, still to be developed at that time.
Crown mare Bareltina has a pure Groninger descent. She depicts the type of Groninger horse that was bred beginning of this century, and which stayed in existence even during the later "heavy draft horse" period. After WWII these horses became important again.
Not withstanding being blind in one eye because of an accident, it was impossible to keep Bareltina within fencing. At 14 years of age, she still cleared her 5 foot pasture fencing. Owner Mr. Anton van Lijssel
NWP stallion Kambius, born 1936, was one of the more elegant offspring of the heavy Oldenburg stallion Gambo, who came to the Netherlands in 1928 and who was for the approx. 25 years that the heavy warmblood stood central, the most important Groninger stallion
The stallion Colonel (1915-1944 ) at 26 years of age and still in top shape. Colonel has an East Friesian sire, his dam is by the Selle Francais stallion Tourbillion  (1897).
Further riding horse development The foundation
When after WW II the tractor took over from horses in farming, and at the same time, the equestrian sports went through a strong development, riding horse characteristics became more and more desired. Studbooks tried to fulfill this requirement through selection within the breed, hereby bringing the light carriage horses, still in existence in NWP and Sgrt more to the front. Especially the Sgldt, with a large fraction of lighter horses played hereby an important role. Because the change in type was found to be too slow, horses were imported to speed up the development. The Holsteiner breed was hereby very important. The reason for using Holsteiner stock may be explained by a rumor that says that back in time, Dutch breeders moved to Holstein, taking their horses with them, and that as a result of this, there is a close relationship between the original Dutch horses and Holsteiners. The NWP imported several Holstein mares, which were bred with native stallions. Famous is the mare Morgenster by Godin, belonging to the old Holsteiner stam No. 1907 (Gabriel Lorentin Makart Friedland Artillerist). She went into history as Dam of the preferent Groninger stallion Sinaeda (Morgenster x Cambinus, Fig. 4), who forms a foundation for one of the KWPN jumping lines and who can be found back in several European studbooks. Sinaeda was an impressive stallion, both in regards to offspring and appearance, leaving a total of 16 approved sons. The NWP also approved some Gelderland stallions, one of them being the originally 100% Groninger stallion Tamboer (Fig. 5), and his grandson Baldewijn (Fig. 6), who is still at the foundation of the present day Groninger breeding program.
The stallion Sinaeda (1958-1967), foundation for KWPN jumping lines, showing his willingness in agricultural work. Sinaeda was an impressive stallion, not only because of his appearance (16.2 hh, 85 inch chest, 9.6 inch canon), but especially because of the success in sports from his offspring and his 16 approved sons.
Tamboer, standing 1957-1962 for the Sgldt and 1963-1966 for the NWP.
Baldewijn, (1966-1983), last stallion of the NWP breeding program and foundation stallion for the present studbook "Groninger Paard". Baldewijn goes back to Groninger ancestors of the lighter type.
In the 50ies, four foreign stallions were imported to assist the demand from the VLN membership for riding horse characteristics. From these, only the Selle Francais stallion L`Invasion (by Pre Sale) and the Holstein stallion Normann (by Heidelberg) left any traces. Around 1960, approximately 10 more stallions were imported by VLN and NWP, to aid in the development of an agricultural riding horse, meaning a riding horse that was supposed to be suited for both agricultural work and for equestrian sports. To be kept in mind are Farn (by Fax I, Holst)(Fig. 7), Porter (by the Trakehner Polarfuerst, Holst), Polaris (by the Trakehner Polarfuerst, Holst), Rigoletto (by Ramzes, Holst), all NWP, and Amor (by Herrscher, Holst)(Fig. 8), Cavalerist (Holst), Eclatant (by Duellant, Hanno) and the Furioso grandson Artilleur (SF), all Sgldt, which produced many excellent performance horses.
Farn was a Groninger stallion, imported by the NWP from Holstein at the age of 3. He is the sire to the Gelderland elite stallion Garant, and the famous KWPN stallion Nimmerdor, who is the only approved son in the KWPN`s first 10 years of existence. Farn was sold very cheaply because he was of the "older" type. Discovery of the extreme jumping capabilities of his offspring brought a change, and several of his sons were licensed by the KWPN.
Amor is a Gelderlander stallion, imported by the Sgldt from Holstein at the age of 3. Having elite stallion Amor (1959-1991) in the pedigree is a guarantee for dressage performance, but besides this many offspring are also performing excellent in jumping and driving. The influence of Amor can still be seen in Dutch performance horses. Amor`s most important son was the international Gelderlander jumping stallion Gondelier (fig. 9), who also passes on his talent. Amor can be found back in many international dressage horses, not to forget the international dressage star Aktion, who carries Amor`s blood twice, once through the preferent Gelderlander stallion Epigoon and once through the Groninger international jumping stallion Akteur. Amor was like other Gelderlander stallions sold cheaply because it was thought that he did not fit anymore in the modern KWPN breeding program. Only after the quality of his offspring came to the front, several of his sons were licensed.
Gondelier, the first Gelderlander stallion jumping internationally (rider Henk Nooren). Gondelier, shown here taking a 2.20 meter (7 1/4ft) wall, became Dutch jumping champion in 1972, and was in the final round of the International jumping tournement in Paris, Berlin, Davos, Dinar and Hoogeboom.
Because the use of foreign bloodlines did again not allow a fast enough development, the studbook allowed for the use of high blooded stallions, stallions with a large percentage of Thoroughbred blood. The use of the horses in agriculture however stayed very central, and because of this reason, a separate registry was opened for crosses carrying Thoroughbred. This lead in 1964 to the formation of the VLN Sport registry, which was only meant to be a preliminary studbook. Horses of this registry carrying 50% Gelderlander/Groninger blood, bred back to Gelderlander/Groninger horses, and as such carrying 75% Gelderlander/Gronings blood, were allowed to be registered back as pure Gelderlander/Gronings. The NWP followed this example and also started a Sports Studbook. As the success of this new breeding direction became clear, the Sport registry/Sport Sudbook started promoting the sport horse breeding, and soon, it overwhelmed the original Groninger and Gelderlander breeding. Gelderlander and Groninger stallions lost almost all of their breedings and the horses became very hard to sell. An example is the important dressage horse producer Eufraat (Wachtmeester x Karolus van Wittenstein), champion Gelderlander stallion, who was named redundant in 1976 and who was removed from the studbook Times got tougher for the Groninger horse than the Gelderlander horse, because of the more original, heavier bloodlines.
Forming of the KWPN and evolution
In 1969, the VLN and the NWP merged to become the "Koninklijk Warmbloed Paardenstamboek in Nederland" (KWPN) and three registries were formed, the riding horse registry, the carriage horse registry and the Gelderlander Versatility Horse registry. This last registry was removed after a couple of years, next recognized again under the name of "Basis Paard", or Foundation Horse. Now, the registry is again known under the name of Gelderlander, but its size is almost negligible. The KWPN pushed breeders towards deluting the Gelderlander blood as much as possible by outcrossing to other breeds. It was recommended to breed Gelderlander/Groninger mares to Thoroughbreds, and to next breed the resulting offspring (F1-product) to foreign stallions, in order to solidify and maintain the gained riding horse characteristics. Whereas the original requirement of having at least 75% of Gelderlander blood, in order to be registered Gelderlander changed in 1990 to 87.5%, this requirement was removed completely in 1998, with the supposed goal of widening the Gelderlander horse population and preventing inbreeding. The Groninger horse was completely excluded from the KWPN. All still existing Groninger stallions were labeled redundant. The last stallion going through this development was the stallion Baldewijn. The carriage horses underwent a drastic change through the use of Hackney blood, such that the original Gelderlander carriage horse became almost nonexistent. The Hackney has had a great negative influence on the character, such that it can only be used by a very select number of competitors. The influence on movement was however positive. Because of the negative effect, breeders are at present trying to replace the Hackney blood with American Saddlebred blood. Currently a maximum of 6.25% Hackney/Saddlebred blood is allowed.
In 1976, the KWPN magazine "In De Strengen", published a strong plea by the head of the KWPN inspection committee, Mr. A. Vermond, for the Gelderlander stallion Dirigent (Fig. 10). One year later, Dirigent was again taken off the stallion list and called redundant. Also the lines of Amor, Farn, and others were not recommended anymore. During the first 10 years of the KWPN, only one Gelderlander stallion was approved for riding horse breeding, the world renown Nimmerdor. Only after the success of offspring of the older stallions in sports had been proven, a few of their sons were again approved for breeding. The stallions themselves were however never promoted very much, and breeders neglected them for a long time.
"In The Strengen" Owner: Mr. A.G. Van Heyst
... The last 10 years we have been working hard to change the prior warmbloood work horse into a Dutch riding/carriage horse. It may be usefull to stand still and think.
Because of the success of F1-products, the focus has been on Thoroughbred stallions. As a consequence, many breeders took their mares to Thoroughbred stallions, even mares that were not at all suited for this cross. Considering that the majority of riders has had very little to no riding instruction, often also not have the time available for riding, we think it may be good to point breeders towards the excellent characteristics present in stallions of the Foundation Type and old bloodlines. This will serve the carriage horse breeding, as this one needs a larger foundation, and it will serve the riding horse breeding, especially when the mare already is high blooded.
For this reason we thought the place of honor in this magazine, the front page, should go to a stallion with old blood, refined with riding horse characteristics brought in from the L`Invasion line (SF), the stallion Dirigent 1224 Sgldt. A. Vermond
Importance of Gelderlander Blood
To find an answer to this question, we may want to examine the WBFSH ranking for KWPN stallions over the last 10 years . The list is limited to stallions with at least 3 offspring active in international jumping. Among the 213 stallions listed for jumping, we find 36 stallions bred KWPN. From these, 26 (72%) are at least half-Gelderlander/Gronings. In interpreting this table it should be taken into account that as the percentage of Gelderlander/Groninger blood increases, the number of breedings goes down, a result of the negative bias against the breeds. The fact that Gelderlander stallions are loved in other countries is proven by the Belgian approved (BWP) 75% Gelderlander stallion Avontuur (1982), sired by Jasper, who jumped internationally under the name of Little One with Hugo Simon, and out of a mare by Prins Oregon. As a youngster Avontuur obtained many victories, both in jumping and dressage. As a seven year old he participated in numerous international jumping competitions and was among many others winner at Maastricht, Hannover (twice) and Grenoble. He was less active in 1990, the year of his approval, because of testing, approval and breeding season, but still he was a winner with victories in Gotheburg (triple), Kapellen, Zurich, Canisy and Olympia-London, not to forget his victorious finishing up of the season with a triple victory at the international jumping tournement in Mechelen (Malines). There he won the Dunhill test on Thursday, the Honda Masters with heights up to 1.85 meter (6 foot) on Friday and the Cera Grand Prix on Sunday. And the series of victories continued over the following years.The KWPN stallions, their percentage of original Gelderlander/Gronings blood, and the number of internationally competing offspring. The smaller numbers when going later in time are due to the ever decreasing number of Gelderlander and Groninger stallions and the lack of promotion for these stallions, resulting in a very limited number of offspring.
Born before 1970
Jasper 50% 23Irco Polo 50% 6
Formateur 10% 5
Koopman 50% 3
Nimmerdor 75% 37
Irco Marco 75% 15
Notaris 50% 11
Renville 50% 7
Maykel 50% 4
Pion 50% 4
Nabuur 50% 3
Palfrenier 25% 3
Recruut 50% 3
Wellington 62.5% 7
Wolfgang 75% 7
Tolbert 50% 6
Triton 25% 6
Ommen 25% 5
Sultan 25% 4
Schalkhaar 50% 3
Sebastiaan 50% 3
Transvaal 25% 3
Uddel 87.5% 3
Volckmar 50% 3
Wisconsin 62.5% 3
Zuidhorn 50% 10
Concorde 25% 8
Zeoliet 25% 8
Ahorn 37.5% 6
Aram 62.5% 5
Animo 50% 4
Cavalier 50% 4
Amethist 62.5% 3
Boreas 25% 3
Dageraad 31.25% 3
Zadok 62.5% 3
Given the versatility of the Gelderlander/Groninger horse, similar conclusions can be drawn for Gelderlander and Groninger horses competing internationally in dressage. Table 3 gives Dutch bred KWPN horses that competed in Grand Prix at the 1998 WEG in Rome, in order of scoring, together with their percentage of Gelderlander blood. It turns out that 7 from the 13 horses are more than 50% Gelderlander/Gronings (more info to be expected from NA/WPN). To be mentioned also among dressage horses is the pure Gelderlander gelding Dikkiloo, sold to Great Britain as a carriage horse, next sold again to a dressage competitor, and representing Great Britain in the 2000 Olympics in Sydney.
Dutch bred dressage horses that competed in Grand Prix Dressage at the 1998 WEG in Rome. The second best KWPN horse in Rome was the 75% Gelderlander mare Elorianne, sired by the 100% Gelderlander Grand Prix dressage stallion Zooloog (fig. 11), who was the only pure Gelderlander stallion approved for riding horse breeding by the KWPN. Because of his Gelderlander heritage, Zooloog hardly obtained any breedings, and the mares that were bred to him were not top of the line. As a result, Zooloog sold to the US, which he represented in the 1991 Pan Am Games, where he was a Silver Medalist. From the 49 foals that he left behind in the Netherlands, four are competing internationally in dressage.
Zooloog (1981, Gondelier keur Sgldt x Flaneur Sgldt), a 100% Gelderlander stallion approved for riding horse breeding by the KWPN. Notwithstanding the very limited number of chances that this stallion obtained in breeding, he turned out to be one of the major KWPN dressage horse producers.
Zooloog was sold to the US (1987) and became one of the most successful international dressage stallions, among other titles representing the US in the 1991 Pan Am Games.
From the 49 foals he left behind in the Netherlands after 4 years of breeding, four have been brought out in the international dressage arena. These are Elorianne (Table 2), Glamour (Netherlands, 100% Gelderlander, out of a mare by Eufraat, Dutch Dragon (US) and Gucci (US), who made it to one of the very top US dressage horses under German rider/owner Jan Ebeling.
· 1984 Completed 100 Day Test, Ermelo, Holland
· 1986 First Premium foals in Holland
· 1989 Gold Medal USOC Olympic Festival
· 1990 CDS PSG Horse of the Year
· 1991 Silver Medalist Pan American Games
· 1991 U.S. Olympic Selection Trials
What happened to the Groninger horse
With help of the Dutch association for rare breeds, the Groninger Horse survived, and in 1981, a new studbook was started, and was officially recognized in 1985 under the name "Het Groninger Paard". As this studbook had only one original, foundation stallion available, the stallion Baldewijn, new blood had to be found somewhere else. This resulted in the importation of a few classical Oldenburg stallions from Oldenburg, Poland and East-Germany, the importation of one Cleveland Bay stallion from England, the use of Holsteiner stallions and the use of halfbred stallions (sired by Thoroughbreds) out of Groninger mares. Because of this new breeding strategy, the Groninger horse obtained a too large versatility in bloodlines, and inspection scores of new stallions are in general less than those from stallions from the original Baldewijn line. Based on the results of using Holsteiner bloodlines in the past, excellent results can be expected from the crosses with Holsteiner stallions. The use of a Cleveland Bay stallion (Maningford Hermes), can be substantiated, knowing that both Holsteiner and Oldenburg breed made extensive use of the Cleveland Bay to form a foundation. Through sports, the _ Groninger, _ Holstein stallion Loek, born 1970, was rediscovered, and his offspring is showing promising results for the future of this rare breed. Loek was also KWPN approved for Gelderlander breeding, NOT for riding horse breeding.
Groninger stallion Loek, born 1970.
Loek was known for his excellent results in sports; he competed successfully in dressage and driving. He was also known for his wonderful character and good health. During his first year in dressage, he became level M (2nd level) champion of Gelderland. At 27 years of age, Loek was still being used as a schoolhorse. He passed away in 1997. Experience has proven that the Groninger horses are the preferred breed to be crossed with high-blooded partners, such as the Thoroughbred and the Trakehner, a cross that is very much in demand by top riders. The success of the cross is explained by the "heterosis effect", meaning the result of crossing two completely unrelated breeds, a result that surpasses the quality of both parents.
In a strong effort of line breeding it is being tried to concentrate the few lines of original Gronings blood, and use it as a solid foundation for future breeding. At present, the Groninger breed has 13 stallions and about 200 mares left. A sincere concern is if this breed will be able to be revived.
Groninger stallion Ramires (1995)
Was rated First Premium as a foal, is the highest scoring Groninger stallion. Inspection notes describe "Beautiful front, good build, excellent movement and super character. Very interesting Groninger/Holsteiner/Cleveland Bay bloodlines, and coming from a preferent mare line, known to produce performance. Will fit to any mare."
De original Gelderlander/Groninger horse, at present limited to only about five hundred mares, is a breed that has to be preserved. Their marvelous character and athleticism are proven by the numerous victories in international jumping and dressage competition. Their usability in sports up to a ripe old age, is demonstrated by stallions like Vosmaer, still competing successfully with rider Chelsey Sibley (California) at GP and GP freestyle at the age of 20. It is hoped that the US will grow in establishing a new haven for this wonderful breed, a haven started by stallions such as Zooloog, Patrick en Vosmaer, only to mention a few. I would like to finish with a quote made by Gerhard Etter, living in Switzerland and being one of the world`s biggest horse dealers, who said "As a dealer, I seldom become attached to a horse. But still, there is one horse I would never sell, and that is my 22 year old KWPN stallion Wandango, who jumped internationally and who is without any doubt the best stallion standing in Switzerland". This quote, made again about an almost pure Gelderlander stallion (by Legaat [Marco Polo x Sinaeda] and out of a Gelderlander dam) is something almost every owner of a Gelderlander/Groninger would repeat.
The pure Gelderlander stallion Patrick (1974-1999, Jonkheer Stb x Geoloog Sgldt)
International showjumper, top-ten in the American rankings of sires of international dressage horses, second in the KWPN rankings.
The dutch warmblood breed is highly succesful in many equestrian spheres including show jumping, dressage and eventing. A Dutch Warmblood is a warmblood type of horse registered with the Koninklijk Warmbloed Paardenstamboek Nederland (Royal Warmblood Studbook of the Netherlands (KWPN), which governs the breeding of competitive dressage and show jumping horses, as well as the show harness horse and Gelderlander, and a hunter studbook in North America. Developed through a breeding program that began in the 1960s, the Dutch are some of the most successful horses developed in postwar Europe.
Prior to World War II, there were two types of utility horse in the Netherlands: Gelderlanders bred in the south under the Gelderlander Horse Studbook (1925) and the Groningen bred in the north under the NWP (1943). The Groningen was, and still is, a heavy weight warmblood horse very similar in type to the Alt-Oldenburger and East Freisian. The Gelderlander, by the same token, was a more elegant variation on the same theme, being often a high-quality carriage horse in addition to a useful agricultural horse. And, while the Groningen were almost unwaveringly solid black, brown, or dark bay, the Gelderlanders were more often chestnut with flashy white markings. These two registries merged to form the Royal Warmblood Horse Studbook of the Netherlands (KWPN).
After the Second World War, the Gelderlander and Groninger were replaced by tractors and cars, and horses began to become a luxury rather than a necessity. As early as the 1950s, stallions like the French-bred L`Invasion and Holsteiner Normann were imported to encourage a change in the type of Dutch horses, followed soon after by the Holsteiner Amor and Hanoverian Eclatant. The carriage-pulling foundation stock contributed their active, powerful front ends and gentle dispositions to the Dutch Warmblood.
Today the KWPN comprises four sections: the Gelderlander, the Tuigpaard or Dutch Harness Horse, and riding horses bred for either dressage or show jumping. Indeed, the KWPN was the first studbook to regulate such specialization amongst its sport horses
Dutch law has made branding illegal, so today only the oldest Dutch Warmbloods still bear the lion-rampant brand on the left hip. Instead, the horses are microchipped. To become a breeding horse, mares must stand at least 15.2hh and stallions at least 15.3hh at the withers. There is no upper height limit, though too-tall horses are impractical for sport and not desirable.
Most Dutch Warmbloods are black, brown, bay, chestnut, or grey, and white markings are not uncommon. The population also has a number of tobiano horses from the influence of the approved stallion Samber, though a second tobiano stallion has not been approved since. The roan pattern is also to be found occasionally through the approved stallion El Rosso.
For the past 15 years, the breeding direction has called for a horse suitable for the Grand Prix level. Strict selection procedures ensure that bad-tempered stallions and mares do not go on to produce unmanageable horses, however, the Dutch Warmblood is significantly more sensitive than its Gelderlander and Groningen ancestors. Performance test results allow breeders and buyers to identify horses with amateur-suitable temperaments. All Dutch Warmbloods are selected to be uncomplicated to handle and ride. Among the dressage horses, cooperativeness is paramount as an element of the submission required in that sport. From the show jumpers, a level of courage and reflexivity is required to effectively navigate a course.
Since the turn of the millennium, Dutch Warmblood breeding has shifted from breeding a "riding horse" to further specialization into dressage type and jumper type horses. To protect against losing canter quality in the dressage horse and conformation, gaits and rideability in the jumper type, genetic material continues to be freely exchanged between the two types. Specialization depends on the abilities of the horse.
The Dutch Warmblood is long-legged but substantial with a smooth topline and dry, expressive head. They are built level to uphill in a rectangular frame. A number of traits are desirable in both directions, such as "long lines" or a rectangular frame, "balanced proportions" and attractiveness. The requirements for the two types differ in the desired interior qualities, but also in form. The exact outline of the Dutch Warmblood varies depending on the pedigree.
No registry produced more successful international show jumping horses than the KWPN. For the 2007 year, Dutch Warmbloods were ranked #1 in jumping by the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses (WBFSH). A few of the recent Olympic medalists bred in the Netherlands include Royal Kaliber, Montender, Authentic (Nimrod), and Mac Kinley in 2004 and De Sjiem in 2000. The only registry more successful on the dressage "big tour" was the Hanoverian studbook; Dutch Warmbloods were ranked #2 in dressage in the WBFSH rankings in 2007 due to high placings in major events by horses such as Painted Black, Jazz and Idocus. Recent Dutch Warmblood Olympic medal-winners in dressage include Ferro and Udon.
Eventing is not a priority for Dutch breeders, nevertheless there are a handful of Dutch Warmblood eventers on the international scene.
In North America, the Dutch Warmblood is a favorite choice for the hunter ring. Rox Dene, named "Hunter of the Century" by the Chronicle of the Horse, was sired by the Dutch Warmblood stallion Aristos B. The North American branch of the KWPN has begun selection for Dutch Hunter horses; one of the first approved stallions was Popeye K, himself a Dutch Warmblood. Rox Dene was later bred to Popeye K.
A Dutch warmblood stallion by the name of Uraeus was cast in the role of Brego in the The Lord of the Rings film trilogy.
When hearing "Horses of the Dutch", everyone immediately refers to the Dutch Warmbloods belonging to the KWPN. The term however has to be given a much deeper meaning, and to be understood as well are the two breeds that formed the foundation for the present KWPN, and that are now on the verge of extinction. These two breeds are the Gelderlander and the Groninger Horse. The importance of the two breeds in cultivating the KWPN breed can be clearly seen when examining the bloodlines of KWPN international jumpers or interna
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Dutch Breed Of Horse
The Dutch Warmblood is a "warmblood sport horse" breed. Warmblood simply distinguishes this type of horse from the "cold bloods" (draft horses) and the "hot bloods" (Thoroughbreds and Arabs). Sport horse refers to the intended use of the breed - as a competitive and recreational horse for the major international equestrian disciplines of dressage, jumping, 3-day event, and driving.
History of the Dutch Sport Ho