By Body Bosgra, Alice Booij and Jeanet Dam / KFPS
Overwhelmed by goosebumps: That was the reaction when the oldest Dutch hore studbook, the Koninklijk Friesch Paarden-Stamboek, is celebrated its 145th anniversary during its annual stallion show.
There was no better occasion than the KFPS Stallion Show 2024 hosted at the WTC Expo in Leeuwarden from January 10-13. The magnificent Jubilee Show turned out to be one hell of a party, with an unforgettable stallion show on the Saturday that was full of goosebump moments.
The history of the imaginative Friesian horse is about life and survival. A time when the breed repeatedly had to adapt to greatly changing circumstances. It managed to survive thanks to its adaptability, supported by the love and passion of many enthusiasts. Those enthusiasts and their Friesian horses also formed the heart of the uniquely highlighted Jubilee Show. Unprecedented how a small team of professionals with many volunteers put on a wonderful show in such a short time.
Always keep dreaming
On Saturday, the annual highlight of the KFPS, the grandstands were once again filled early with thousands of passionately compassionate fans. The phenomenal speaker Bert de Ruiter orchestrated them like a conductor throughout the day full of highlights. One such highlight was the announcement of the Breeder of the Year 2023. That honour went to Gabrielle van Tilborg and her Fan Dulve breeding. The birthday girl could not have wishes for a nicer birthday present. With her small-scale breeding she manages to achieve great successes. “My dream of breeding a model mare has come true. My new dream is to breed a studbook stallion. Always keep dreaming.” An honourable presentation of the Royal Friesian Pin was also made to American Angie DePuydt. With this pin, the KFPS honours her for her dedicated and tireless commitment to the health of the Friesian horse.
Full of emotion
While he was absent last year due to a slight injury, this year Jehannes 484 shone as ever. Much to the delight of his owner Age Okkema, Jehannes 484 became Horse of the Year 2023. When later in the day this top horse also became champion of the older breeding stallions, the emotions became too much for the true Friesian horseman. “We should be proud of the Friesian horse. It brings you everything.” No less emotional was Elias 494’s farewell to competitive sport. With the song One last dance sung by Samantha Steenwijk, Marc Peter Spahn and Elias 494 gave the audience even more goosebumps. Again, they show what unprecedented heights they have reached together in international dressage sport. It is partly thanks to this combination that the Friesian horse is internationally recognised as a sport horse. With a standing ovation, the audience said goodbye to Elias 494, who can now fully focus on his role as a breeding stallion... To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
CLICK HERE TO SUBSCRIBE TO BREEDING NEWS
SUBSCRIBERS CAN READ THE COMPLETE ARTICLE BY LOGGING IN AND RETURNING TO THIS PAGE