German Riding Pony Horses
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German Riding Ponies (or Deutsche Reitpony) is a veryrnpopular pony breed from Germany. They are described as a "miniaturernwarmblood" with refined, horse-like characteristics that make themrnsuitable as both a children's pony and as a mount for sport horse competitions.rnrnrn 

rnrnGerman Riding Ponies have a phenotype very similar to thatrnof a full-sized horse. Only their head is pony-like, giving the appearance ofrnhaving a pleasant manner and friendly disposition. They are bred to be handledrnby children and adolescents. They are suited for both dressage and jumping.rnrn 

rnrnTheir development began around 1965, with a crossbreeding ofrnvarious English pony breeds, especially Welsh ponies, on Arabians,rnAnglo-Arabians, and Thoroughbreds. The goal was to breed competition-qualityrnponies for children to ride in sport horse competitions, more easilyrncontrollable by children than the typical large Warmblood horses used byrnadults, while also keeping some Pony characteristics, including character, typernand willingness to perform.rnrn 

rnrnInitially, Thoroughbred and Arabian stallions were crossedrnon pony-sized Fjords and Haflingers. These cross-breeding attempts to produce arnsport pony in one generation did not lead to the desired type. After Britishrnpony breeds, primarily Welsh ponies were imported and added to the bloodline,rnby 1975 a distinct German riding pony type developed. In the 1990's attemptsrnwere made to further improve the breed through the infusion of Trakehner,rnHanoverian, and Holsteiner blood, but this infusion was unsuccessful: the ponyrntype and qualities were often lost. Today's German Riding Pony breeders usernspecific bloodlines to reliably create German Riding Ponies that fulfill therngoal of a pony type who competes with the athleticism of a small warmblood.rnrn 

rnrnPony sport horse competitions or "tournaments" arernpopular in continental Europe, and ponies are shown by children and adolescentsrnup to 16 years of age in the disciplines of dressage, show jumping, andrneventing. Major tournaments for pony riders include the German Youth Championships,rnthe European Championships and the "Preis der Besten," a teamrncompetition, which will be in dressage, with the International Dressage testsrnof the FEI ridden, for preparatory examination, team and individual scoring.rnThis competition is very popular and both contestants and coaches vie for spotsrnon the respective participating teams.rnrn 

rnrnThe German Riding Pony breed is relatively new to the UnitedrnStates, with a few imports and a single breed registry authorized to conductrninspections for breeding stock.

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