Elisabeth Austin Shows off Olivier Crown at the KWPN-NA Annual Meeting

Saturday, April 3, 2010


Elisabeth Austin and her homebred Grand Prix stallion Olivier Crown, by Idocus, demonstrated a dressage lesson with Barisone at the [#24469 override="KWPN-NA Annual meeting" title="KWPN-NA Annual meeting"] held in Wellington, Florida. Olivier was bred by Austin's mom, Madeleine Austin, who's also her trainer and mentor. The 14-year-old stallion completed his 100-day stallion testing in 2000 and has successfully combined breeding and competitive careers. Olivier comes from a strong motherline. His dam is the Prestatie mare Rowillie, by Porter. "All of our experts reiterated the importance of using good mares to produce quality offspring. Mares make the difference in your breeding program," Arts summarized.

A trip to Olympic Reserve rider Michael Barisone's farm provided another fun and educational field trip while showcasing several KWPN dressage horses in action. Among the quality horses were Urbanus, by Hemingway, and Olympus, by Havel. Olympus and Barisone have been successful internationally, including a win at the 2009 Palm Beach Dressage Derby CDI-W in the Grand Prix for Special.

Breeding and heritability are evident, as Olympus has two full siblings competing in international Grand Prix dressage.While mares are an integral part of success, analyzing the stallions to produce the right match is key. Bart Henstra, Arie Hamoen and Johan Knaap, three KWPN luminaries, discussed linear scoring while showing videos of the stallions presented at the recent stallion show in the Netherlands. Participants learned in depth how to read the Stallion Statistics that includes Breeding Values, as well as their meaning. The book lists the predictors for each stallion, such as size of offspring and characteristics. Using the Breeding Values, breeders can answer questions about stallions: Does he improve jumping ability? The stance of the forelegs? Elasticity? The shape of the croup?  The panel used the internationally acclaimed jumper Heartbreaker (Nimmerdor x Bacarole) to provide overwhelming evidence that his predictors produced outstanding offspring.