Thursday, November 7, 2019

Sport Stallion Approval Process Explained

by Crystal Toogood of Eurequine

Escher DFEN, a 2015 Hanoverian stallion, passed his 2019 NA Stallion Sport Test in the Jumping category. He is owned by Sarah McCarthy and stands at Eurequine. Photo by Sarah McCarthy

Crystal Toogood, of Eurequine, LLC, attended the North American Stallion Sport Test (West Coast), and wrote this piece to help people understand better the process of stallion testing and approval. Reprinted here with permission.

How a stallion becomes approved for breeding can be complicated to understand at first. If you are not familiar with the process, we hope you find our following overview of information helpful in understanding the basics of what is required of our breeding stallions and part of what makes the registered sport horses so special.
Stallion sport testing is a requirement for stallions of most warmblood breed societies to obtain lifetime breeding approval. Stallion licensing (which is different than stallion testing and not covered here) is a prerequisite to attending the Stallion Sport Test. In unique circumstances stallions may obtain lifetime breeding approval thru their success in performance, such as our stallion Rubignon through an international Grand Prix career or Relevantus “Zorro” who competed at many International Grand Prix as well as the Olympics. Performance levels are set by individual registries to meet approval requirements in lieu of a sports test such as we are attending.
The format for how a stallion is tested has changed over the years in Europe as well as here in North America. Registries like the American Hanoverian Society and Oldenburg Horse Breeders Society enjoy and want to maintain full reciprocity with their European counterparts and therefore need to subject these young stallions to the same standards. The current stallion testing takes place at the North American Stallion Sport Test (NASST) held each year on both the East Coast and one on the West coast. The test is a 3 day format that each stallion must attend and pass in two different years. This short test format puts more pressure on the owner to prepare the stallion to a high level for testing and requires the stallions own rider/trainer to show the stallion at the beginning of the test in addition to the test riders. All test riders and judges are qualified by the German National Federation to assure the same level of testing as done in Germany. Because this test is maintaining a high standard all major registries in the USA accept this new form of "Short Test" as a means to achieve a stallion's lifetime approval.
An example of how the licensing and sport testing process would work for a stallion would be as follows:
* Age 3: The stallion is presented for licensing. If accepted, he is granted a 1-year breeding permit to breed mares at age 4.
* Age 4: The stallion must attend a 3-day sport test. If he successfully passes (a score of 7.5 overall is required by the AHS, OHBS, HV), then he is granted another 1-year breeding license to breed mares at age 5.
* Age 5: The stallion attends his second 3-day sport test. If he successfully passes, then he receives his Lifetime approval.
Each stallion is presented at the test in their discipline, Dressage or Jumpers. The requirements for each age group is listed below.
* 4-Year Old Stallions
USEF Four-Year Old Test
Course of 1.0 meters
* 5-Year Old Stallions
FEI Five-Year Old Test
Course of 1.1 meters
* 6-Year Old Stallions
FEI Six-Year Old Test
Course of 1.2 meters
The North American Sport Test is recognized by the following registries
*American Hanoverian Society, Hanoverian Verband, Rhineland Studbook
*German Oldenburg Verband
*American Trakehner Association
*ISR/Oldenburg NA
*Holsteiner Verband.
Eurequine Owner and American Hanoverian Society President Edgar Schutte, along with other members of the AHS, HV and GOV, formed the committee which brought this event to North America. The continued growth in participants and enthusiasm from spectators is exciting for us from this perspective as well as for the continued growth of the Sporthorse in America.
Follow our Instagram and Facebook stories for coverage of the NASST.

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