Friday, April 13, 2018

Foundation Sire: Nimmerdor

This is the fourth installment of Warmblood Stallions of North America’s Foundation Friday. Each Friday we will be featuring a foundation sire - one who has been influential in the development of warmblood breeds. As with most of those articles, we pull from the incredible archive of The Horse Magazine, published by Chris Hector of Australia. Thank you, Chris, for permission to draw on your expertise!

Foundation Sire: Nimmerdor
1972 – 2003
168 cm
Breeder: J. A. Dijkstra

Wiepke van de Lageweg bought Nimmerdor at a stallion show as a two-year-old, for the (then) considerable sum of 25,000 florins. With that purchase, Wiepke went from a humble a cattle dealer to one of the future keeper of Nimmerdor, who was voted “the stallion of the 20th century” in the Netherlands in the year 2000.

At his performance test in 1975, Nimmerdor starred in the jumping, but even then required a rider who took charge, and only scored a 7 for character because of this attitude. He started jumping with Bert Romp, and went on to an international career with Albert Voorn, competing in Berlin, Paris, Goteborg, Dortmund and London. He was selected for the Los Angeles Olympics, but his owner, Wiepke van der Lageweg, decided he should stay home and concentrate on his breeding activities.

Albert Voorn comments: “Even now, after all those years, there is hardly a day that I don’t think of Nimmerdor. He was one of the most talented horses I ever rode. His carefulness combined with his great abilities and scope [are] seldom seen in a horse. It is a pity that I wasn’t able to ride this super talent, Nimmerdor, when my own talents and experiences had grown, like they have now. I had him at the start of my career while still being rather inexperienced. If I’d had him now, he would be very hard to beat I’m sure! I am fully aware that his owner, Wiepke van der Lageweg, was also the proud owner of the last Olympic Champion, Jus de Pommes, but Nimmerdor was the better horse, no doubt!” (quote from the tribute to Nimmerdor by Claartje van Andel in the June 2003 issue of Breeding News)

As a sire, Nimmerdor has been equally successful. Even before he retired from the competition arena, his progeny were starting to make their way through the ranks. Nimmerdor was ranked 29th on the World Breeding Federation ranking for the period 1992/2001 based on a staggering 42 international level jumpers.  At the time of his death he left 18 approved sons, and 37 approved grandsons. His son Aram was the sire of 2000 Olympic gold medalist De Sjiem, and two stallion sons – Faram and Graham. Nimmerdor represents one of the most influential "founding" sires of the Dutch Warmblood, the imported Holsteiner Farn. At the 2008 Olympic Games, the individual gold medal went to Canada’s Eric Lemaze riding Hickstead – by the Nimmerdor son, Hamlet.

In the survey of the world’s top 75 jumping sires that appears in the French publication, Monneron 2007-2008, compiled by Bernard le Courtois, Nimmerdor is represented by two sons. Heartbreaker (out of a Silvano mare) is 11th with 19 CSI winners, while Goodtimes, ranks 65th with five winners.

On the KWPN 2015/16 breeding values, Nimmerdor is in 22nd place on the list of stallions with a reliability of 90%+, with a breeding value of 136 (98%). He has produced 1694 progeny that have reached the age of four, for 554 competitors – 32.703%. On the 2016/17 rankings, Nimmerdor is up to 19th place with a jumping value of 135. He scores 107 for conformation, 105 for free movement and 107 for free jumping. 1695 progeny over four, with 554 competitors (32.68%).

Nimmerdor died at the age of 31 in April 2003.


To read the entire article, with pedigree and more offspring details, on the Horse Magazine website, click here

There are several stallion descendants of Nimmerdor in North America. Click on the following links to read about each of the ones on

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