The Royal Dutch Warmblood Studbook in North America (KWPN-NA), the continent's premier warmblood registry, proudly announces dates and locations for the 2013 KWPN-NA Keuring Tour. These annual inspections are the highlight of the year for United States and Canadian breeders of Royal Dutch Sport Horses, as they have the opportunity to showcase their best young horses and see the results of their passion and dedication for producing the next generation of equine sport superstars.
The KWPN specializes in the breeding of high-performance equine athletes which are not only favorites of riders around the world, but also dominate in equestrian competition. For years, the KWPN has held a top position in the studbook rankings of the World Breeding Federation for Sport Horses (WBFSH), as KWPN horses routinely achieve exceptional success in international jumping, dressage and driving. The quality of the KWPN horse is renowned and praised worldwide, and this success is the result of an extremely goal-oriented breeding policy and a great deal of expertise and innovation. The KWPN’s stringent standards for talent, performance, soundness, and character ensure breeding the "best of the best" to produce the finest sport horses in the world with an eye towards continual improvement of the breed. "In my opinion, the KWPN has the highest standards of all the warmblood registries," said breeder Martha Haley of NeverSayNever Farm in Nova Scotia, Canada. "I like the challenge to meet and exceed these standards. The KWPN is always striving to be the best at what they do – not so different from my own breeding goals."
Each fall, excitement runs high among breeders and sport horse enthusiasts as inspections, called keurings, are held at select locations around the U.S. and Canada. Experts from Holland and North America judge foals, yearlings, young horses, geldings, stallions and mares to evaluate conformation, movement, free jumping and potential talent for sport. Lucrative prizes are awarded for the breed’s top horses and breeders. Not only will breeders have the opportunity to present their best KWPN stock for approval, special designations, and coveted awards, but they will receive expert evaluations which support the breeder and/or rider to make decisions about riding or driving careers and future breeding decisions.
"If riders and trainers are looking for modern horses that are talented, and sound of mind and body, they should look into horses who have excelled through the KWPN keuring system, because it works," explained leading KWPN breeder Karin Jimenez of Sporting Chance Farm in Pennsylvania. "The primary focus of our breeding program is to breed international quality show jumpers, who have quality gaits, are correct, sound of mind and body, and are also attractive. These same qualities are necessary to be successful through the keurings and later at the top level of the sport. We feel this is very important, which is why we take all of the horses we breed to the keurings."
Beginning in early September, a jury comprised of Royal Dutch Sport Horse experts Lana Sneddon (IN), Deborah P. Harrison, DVM (CA), and Faith Fessenden (NV) will travel across the continent to 14 different sites for the 2013 KWPN-NA Keuring Tour. They will be joined by fellow judges Bart Henstra and Arie Hamoen of the Netherlands.
"In striving to meet the same standards as in Holland, North American keurings use a Dutch judge as the chairman of the jury," Henstra noted. "For me, this tour is really interesting. The breeders in the U.S. and Canada are really enthusiastic and willing to learn."
The 2013 KWPN-NA keuring tour dates and locations include:
- September 4: Apple Lane Farm, Lancaster, MA www.applelanefarm.com 
- September 5-6: Iron Spring Farm, Coatesville, PA www.ironspringfarm.com 
- September 7: Claybrook Farms, Ithaca, MI www.claybrookfarms.com 
- September 8: Legacy USA, LLC, Burr Ridge, IL www.legacyusastables.com 
- September 9: Sumac Farms, Trenton, Nova Scotia, CAN www.sumacfarms.com 
- September 10: Prima Equestrian, Mount Albert, Ontario, CAN www.primaequestrian.com 
- September 11: Carousel Ridge, Sherwood Park, Alberta, CAN www.carouselridge.com 
- September 12: Spirit Equestrian, Somis, CA www.spiritequestrian.com 
- September 13-14: DG Bar Ranch, Hanford, CA www.dgbarranch.com 
- September 15: Sonnenberg Farm, LLC, Sherwood, OR www.sonnenberg.us 
- September 17: Silver Hill Stables, Manor, TX
- September 18: Blalock Lakes, Newnan, GA www.blalocklakes.com 
- September 19: Pennock Point Sport Horses, Reddick, FL firstname.lastname@example.org 
- September 20: Windy Knoll Farms, Sullivan, OH www.windyknollfarms.com 
As part of an impressive array of special awards and designations to be presented at these keurings, the prestigious DG Bar Cup is a competition for three-, four-, five/six- and seven/eight-year-old dressage horses, rewarding gaits, rideability, balance, rhythm, suppleness, and the ability to collect and extend. For the first time, a division for seven/eight-year-old horses will be added, further highlighting the development of Dutch sport horses for careers in sport. Jumper and hunter prospects will contend for the all-new Claybrook Farms Cup, a free-jumping competition for two-, three-, and four/five-year-olds. Horses will be evaluated for scope, carefulness, quickness, technique and willingness. Awards and prize money will be presented to breeders and owners of winning horses in each group as well as overall champions.
In addition, at the end of the year, the honorary Gert van der Veen award will be presented for the KWPN mare earning the highest overall score in the 2013 North American keuring tour. And once again, Iron Spring Farm and the KWPN-NA will join forces to reward North American breeders with a full roster of overall keuring championships and prize money to be presented at this fall's KWPN-NA annual meeting.
For more information about the 2013 KWPN-NA keuring tour, contact the KWPN-NA office, http://kwpn-na.org/  or by phone (541) 459-3232.