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KWPN chairman Andries van Daalen looks back on 2020!

Andries Van Daalen

By Charlotte Dekker / KWPN
Photography: Jacob Melissen

“Covid-19 demands creative solutions,” as 2020 goes into the books as an eventful year thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. It affects our daily lives: at work, economically, privately, in services, sport – which encompasses breeding and competitions.

It was necessary to confront the necessary regulations from the government in which the KWPN was forced to cancel many events in the first place. The management and board deliberated on how to responsibly deal with the situation, and KWPN chairman Andries van Daalen said: “Of course, we fully support all these guidelines to slow down the spread of the virus, which resulted in the cancellation of various activities. Behind the scenes, we entered into consultations with the government, and a lot of time and energy was spent on developing protocols as a sector for, in the first place, [micro]chipping foals and organizing studbook inspections. When more was made possible because of a relaxation, we kept in close contact with the government, and everything that could be organized was done according to very strict guidelines and protocols. ”
However, many events were cancelled or took place without an audience. “I, and I suspect many with me, have missed contact with our members and other horse enthusiasts. Because, what could be better than exchanging ideas with like-minded people about breeding, the sport, and everything around our beloved KWPN horse. But the reality made clear, that it just wasn't possible this year.”

Creative solutions

At the same time, a situation like this year forces people to be creative and look for other solutions. Van Daalen said; “For us, this meant more investment in online services. The KWPN championships could not take place, but we broadcast the studbook inspections and the national championship for three-year-old mares via Livesteam. We have also posted many vlogs online, in which breeders, stallion owners, trainers, veterinarians, KWPN officials, and employees showed us ‘the KWPN in corona time’. This was appreciated by the viewers, especially, at a time when there was simply nothing else to do.”
Recently, the first round of viewing of the jumping, dressage, and Gelder stallions was completed at the KWPN Center. Only handlers and supervisors were admitted, and owners could only attend the performance of their own stallion. “But everything was easy to follow via the Livestream on KWPN.tv, our website, and via ClipMyHorse. As a result, 12,000 unique visitors from around 35 countries watched the stallions' performances in the first two days – a number we would never have physically achieved in Ermelo. By this option, the KWPN horse gained even more fame worldwide. I got a lot of positive reactions from the Livestream. Because, for example, the viewing on hard ground, where the stallions are judged for correctness in movement, was easier to follow via the Livestream than ever before. To facilitate trade, the Livestream paid extra attention to the stallions for sale. “The international reach was of course very important and, overall, we can conclude it has turned out to be a successful initiative.”.. To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber