By Jo de Roo
Photography: Jo de Roo
The National Breeding Day BWP took place on October 16, 2021, albeit according to a new concept. Previously, the participating horses and Belgian riding ponies were judged on conformation and movements on a ‘smooth’ surface. In the new concept, the participants were also judged on a ‘hard’ surface. There was also a free jumping class for two- and three-year-olds.
Why the idea of changing the national BWP Breeding Day? According to BWP chairman Jozef Bauters: “The idea originated with a small core of people from the BWP province of Antwerp. The reason is very clear: None of us can deny that the conformation classes, including the National Breeding Day, have had a waning interest. As a studbook, we want to stick to our core task, which is to ensure a lasting healthy foundation for our mares.
“What is sometimes criticized during conformation classes for mares is the fact that the mares are not judged on the hard surface. Until now, an assessment on the hard surface was only done during the stallion expertise. The three fundamentals that are essential in the evaluation of young showjumpers are the movements on both hard and soft surfaces as well as free jumping. Today, the two- and three-year-old mares were judged on these three criteria, the mares of other age categories on the smooth and hard surface. This obviously requires extra volunteers and jury members. I am pleased to have seen many young volunteers at work today.
“The dams that participated in the BWP Breeding Day were not pre-selected. This is new and a step into the unknown for us. Every innovative concept has pros and cons. Therefore, anyone who was interested could register.”
Bauters, who is strongly committed to numbers, has a list in his pocket with the number of participating horses per province: “Flemish Brabant is represented with six horses, Antwerp with 54, Limburg with 12, West Flanders with seven, and East Flanders with 34. We notice that Antwerp with the largest number is present, logical since the event takes place in this province. These figures also teach us that there is a ‘to-do’ for BWP national, namely with the presidents of the provinces with few registrations, to find out what the possible reasons are and what we can do from BWP national to increase this number.”.. To read the complete article you need to be a subscriber
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