BELGIUM (by Jo de Roo) This year, 50 candidates were inscribed to participate at the stallion expertise of the sBs in Gesves, indicating a 25 percent increase over last year. In the ‘dressage’ option there were five three-year-old candidates as well as one four-year-old. The ‘showjumping’ option included 28 three-year-old candidates, thirteen four-year-olds, one five-year-old, one six-year-old and one ten-year-old candidate.
The stallion selection committee consisted of Daniël Maillart, Jacques Fraselle and Claude Henry, while the dressage ‘option’ also included special consultant Roger Decock. Selection was based on the dam lines, conformation and showjumping qualities or movements, in free jumping or under saddle. Finally, the jury approved a total of 19 stallions: three in the dressage and 16 in the showjumping options, respectively. Twelve of these were birth-registered sBs, three BWP, one Hanoverian, one KWPN, one Westfalian and one Studbook Zangersheide.
Several outstanding dam lines were represented, such as Ta Belle van Sombeke (Jos Lansink); Candy (winner of the 2013 Calgary International five-star Grand Prix with Belgium’s Pieter Devos); Gazelle de la Brasserie (performed at the highest level in international eventing in partnership with Karin Donckers); Hondeline du Coral (dam of international showjumpers Sidoline and Uchin van de Centaur); and Ligie (dam of the approved stallion Ligie’s Goldstar VVand several other international performers).
In total, five of the 19 approved stallions were born out of a dam with an sBs label: two with the ‘EO’ label (‘elite obstacle’ or ‘elite showjumping’), and three dams with the ‘RO’ label (‘recommandé obstacle’ or ‘recommendé showjumping’). This proves that the system of labels introduced by sBs several years ago works. The jury awarded the maximum score (AA) to three stallions: one in the dressage option (to the stallion First-Step Ironn L), and two in the showjumping option (to stallions Pikap de Muze Z and Garfield de Tiji des Templiers).