Trakehner Stallions Perfomance Test


The stallion selection process is one that is very important indeed to the Trakehner breed, and is often misunderstood. Judges are selected for their long experience and knowledge of Trakehner bloodlines, and they take their task very seriously. For breeders, getting a horse selected for breeding is rather like winning the lottery, being voted the best breeder ever, and getting an Olympic Gold Medal all on one day.

Stallions are usually presented as two or three year olds: those that are older must have been performance tested before being brought forward to the grading. Our web site gives details of the process involved, but there is n substitute for knowledge and experience, and we always advise people to go to Neumünster to the Trakehner Verband Grading, or at the very least to one of our UK ones, to get an idea of the standards involved.

After a stallion is selected (“graded”) he has by UK rules two years to complete an approved Stallion Performance Test. In Germany this is a legal requirement for all horses, so owners can send their stallions to a testing station in Germany if they wish, in which case he will also be recognised under German law, or they can use the National Stallion Association test in the UK that has been designed to be a parallel exercise without the horse being left in the hands of the testing station for 30 and 70 days as in Germany. In the alternative, stallions may be approved as having reached an equivalent level in competition, but this will inevitably mean a delay in his approval, because the standards required are very high indeed.

Where as the grading is all in hand, and the stallion is judged on conformation, movement, free jumping and Trakehner type, the Performance Test is designed to establish just how well the horse goes under saddle. Temperament and stable manners etc can also come into the judging in Germany. The Test proper is best described as a One Day Event with additions, plus tests under a Rider Judge. For Trakehners, we require more than an ordinary pass mark; in Germany as well as in the UK only the highest marks confirm approva for the Trakehner Stud Books.