East Coast Sport Horses, LLC, is proud to further the breed of the Dutch Warmblood through our breeding program. Our focus is the breeding of strength speed and discipline into a generation of future Sport Horses. You can visit our "Breeder' Offerings" page and view those presently bred at ECSH and available for sale. We hope the following information provides you an understanding of the breed. Photos on this page are of Dutch Warmblood foals, mares and stallions from ECSH.
The Dutch Warmblood is a fairly modern breed that was derived from two native Dutch Breeds -- the Gerderlander and the Groningen. The breeders intended to combine the best characteristics of each breed and then the resulting offspring were further refined with the introduction of the Thoroughbred blood. This resulted in athletic horses, with good sloping shoulders, giving them a flatter and longer action as well as longer necks and shorter backs than the native Dutch breeds. The addition of the thoroughbred blood also improved the Dutch horses' scope and stamina. Dutch farmers earned their living with horses, so strict breeding practices have long been used. Other related Warmbloods, such as the Oldenberger and the Hanoverian, were used to clarify some minor conformation details and to emphasize the desirable calm temperament.
As with most Warmbloods, the Dutch Warmblood continues to evolve. Today, the KWPN recognizes three different categories of Dutch Warmblood: the harness horse, the Gelderland type and the athletic sport horse type, which is the one ECSH specializes in. These horses are high achievers, but achievements are not permitted to overshadow the good conformation, beauty or charm that have made the Dutch horses famous. In a relatively short time, the modernized Dutch Sport Horse has rocketed to international competitive importance. Dutch Warmblood horses, famous for their character, soundness and athletic ability, are exported to all corners of the globe, and are international winners under the flags of many different nations in international competitions and Olympic Games.
Dutch Warmbloods are bred to perform in dressage and show jumping at the highest level. These horses are appealing modern horses, with great eagerness, reliability and intelligence.
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 Arabians). Sport horse refers to the intended one of the breed -- as a competitive and recreational horse for the major international equestrian disciplines of dressage, jumping, three-day eventing and driving.
Most Warmblood breeds are continuing to evolve. In fact, they are not breeds, in the sense that Thoroughbreds, Arabians, Morgans and Saddlebreds are breeds. They do not have closed studbooks. Other breeds are often introduced to the gene pool to reap the benefits of hybrid vigor, and to speed and improve the evolutionary process for attaining the "Breeding Goal" of the particular studbook. The Dutch Warmblood is no exception.
Dutch Warmblood horses average about 16.2 hands with some reaching 17+ hands high. Coat colors are chestnut, bay, black or gray with white markings often on the face and legs. The head is well shaped, usually with a straight profile, and the neck is arched and well muscled, merging neatly into the withers, which are fairly prominent. The back is straight and fairly long, with the croup short, broad and flat. The tail is set high. The chest of this horse is deep and full and the shoulder is well sloped. The legs are strong with a long forearm. Hind quarters are powerful and highly muscled, a characteristic inherited from the original and powerful farm horses of the Netherlands and a feature necessary for strong movements. These factors combine to give great power to the "engine" of the Dutch Warmblood.
The Dutch Warmblood is a very versatile horse. It excels in top level competition, dressage, show-jumping, hunters, eventing and even carriage driving. The calm, even temperament makes them easy to work with and they are willing to turn a hoof, so to speak, to just about anything. If you scan the leader boards at any national or international competition, you are sure to find Dutch Warmbloods on the list.
The main tools in the ongoing evolution and improvement of the Dutch Warmblood are on Keurings, or inspections, which are held in the Netherlands and in North America every year, at which horses are evaluated and rewarded according to their quality and fulfillment of the Breeding Goal. Unlike some Warmblood registries, Dutch horses are not branded as foals based on the fact that they are "registered." Instead, in order to be branded with the proud Dutch lion, they must be presented for Studbook Inspection at the age of three or older. If they are sufficient quality, they are inscribed in the Studbook and can be branded.
The selection system includes a testing system for breeding stallions, one of the most selective and rigorous in the world. Dutch Warmblood stallions, even after being admitted to the studbook, must undergo a re-evaluation each year to assess whether each one fits the picture of the continually developing breed. Only stallions demonstrating a decidedly positive effect on the breeding of the Dutch Warmblood come under consideration for the classification keur (choice). The highest classification is preferent (preferred), an honor award to famous stallions such as Amor, Doruto, Joost, Lucky Boy and Nimmerdor. East Coast Sport Horses continues Nimmerdor's and Consul's lineage through our offspring.
Mares are also designated according to their contributions to the breed. The special predicates for mares include star for mares of especially good quality, keur for ster mares who have produced a foal and that have demonstrated their ability in jumping and dressage in a performance test. Preferent is awarded for mares who have produced at least three foals considered superior in both conformation and gaits. A mare is awarded the honor of prestatie if three of her progeny are also top performers. Many horses at ECHS have "keur" in their lineage, as shown by their pedigrees.
The Royal Warmblood Studbook of the Netherlands (KWPN, Koninklijke, Vereniging Warmblood Paardenstamboek Nederland) is the registry and studbook for Dutch Warmblood Sport Horses and has a history dating back to early in the last century. It deals with breeding goals and rules, inspection and evaluation, promotion, research and administrative matters for breeders of Dutch horses. Dutch horse breeders have been united for more than 100 years. King Willem III recognized the first studbook organization in 1887 and so laid the basis for regulated Warmblood horse breeding in the Netherlands. The KWPN studbook originated in 1969 from a combination of various regional books and was granted the royal title (K) in 1988 by Queen Beatrix.
The North American Department, Royal Warmblood Studbook of the Netherlands was established in 1983 to promote the breeding and enjoyment of the Dutch Warmblood Horse in North America. NA/WPN stands for "North American Department, Royal Warmblood Studbook of the Netherlands", now known as "The Dutch Warmblood Studbook in North America." The NA/WPN has been charged with two major responsibilities, first to preserve, promote and develop the Dutch Warmblood horse to the highest possible standard in North America, and second, to serve its subscribers and breeders through a continuing program of services. In 1997, the name of the NA/WPN was "Americanized" to "The Dutch Warmblood Studbook in North America."
For more information about the Dutch Warmblood:
Royal Warmblood Studbook of the Netherlands
3700 AJ, Zeist, Holland
Tel: +31 30 6934600
Fax: +31 30 6931455
The Dutch Warmblood Studbook of North America
P.O. Box O
Sutherlin, OR 97479
Information supplied by KWPN and NA/WPN
Hendricks, Bonnie L., ed. International Encyclopedia of Horse Breeds, Norman, OK
University of Oklahoma Press, 1995
The Encyclopedia of the Horse - Elwyn Hartley-Edwards. ISBN 1-56458-614-6
Copyright International Museum of the Horse, 1999, 2001
Pedigrees can be important when breeding for strength, speed and discipline. The lineage bred in the ECSH horses, includes:
He is 17hh (hands high), a Dutch Warmblood who tied for the 1994 GTE High Jump record of 6'6 with a 5' spread at Huntington Beach. Dutch Warmblood who tied for the 1994 GTE High Jump record of 6'6 with a 5' spread at Huntington Beach and by Le Mexico.
He was one of the many Selle Fracais stallions who were exported from France to become a foundation sire in the Dutch Warmblood breed.
By Nimmerdor, sired Judgment ISF and is ranked one of the top stallions in the overall standings for sires of jumpers competing in the United States. His progeny have earned more money than any other sire of show jumpers standing in the United States, putting Consul first in line for the USA Equestrian's South Pacific Memorial Award.
Was named the leading producer of jumpers in Holland, as well as being high on the index for producing dressage horses.
By Orthos, he is a 17hh Warmblood who was in the 1996 Olympics held in Atlanta, GA, where he received an 8th place Team Jumping Medal. He was also the winner of numerous Show Jumping Grand Prix's spanning a 10-year career in the ring!