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Valegro recipe for success

Charlotte Dujardin retires Dujardin from competition

GREAT BRITAIN (by Patricia Bakker) On Wednesday, December 14 at London’s Olympia Christmas show, dressage phenom Valegro danced an emotional last dance with his long-time partner, Charlotte Dujardin as he’s retired from competition at the age of 14. His bloodline was a recipe for success.

Ingredients: 1 Negro, 1 Maifleur, 1⁄2 Ferro, 1⁄2 Fewrie, 1⁄2 Gershwin, 1⁄2 Weidyfleur, 1⁄4 Ulft, 1⁄4 Brenda, 1⁄4 Variant, 1⁄4 Mewri, 1⁄4 Voltaire, 1⁄4 Aphrodite, 1⁄4 Heidelberg, 1⁄4 P.Fleur. It’s a recipe that takes some time and requires much dedication, but it creates an ideal Olympic gold medal treat!

If only we could all just get out our recipe booklets and in doing so breed the best dressage horse in the world. Not so easy, although it appears that the Netherlands, profoundly backed up by the KWPN breeding organisation, makes a good breeding ground. KWPN – consistently high in the WBFSH or- ganisational rankings – has always had tough selection criteria, but contrary to breeding organisations in other countries who insist on keeping their breed ‘pure’, KWPN does in fact allow and even promote including horses from abroad, as long as they can withstand the strict selection process. As such we can find Olden- burger, Hannover, Rheinlander, Selle Français and Swedish Warmblood in Valegro’s ancestral pedigree. Dressage horses are found to have jumping bloodlines intertwined, providing them with great strength. It also monitors hereditary defects using x-rays and as such keeps the horse breeds healthy, plus allowing only the healthiest of foreign blood to co-mingle with KWPN...