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groceries for the duwration of the training. If that goes well and you’re ready to start riding your own zygote- now-riding-horse, you bring him or her home and ride off into the windmill or strudel-filled sunset. Most of these folks who start horses in Europe have super training and have grown up in a well-tested system of riding and training. Often, they’ll even take your youngster to his or her first couple of shows. Again, I’m not saying that everything European is good (think of a race of people who eat almost nothing but carbs and whole-fat cheese yet stay thin; the tiny coffee cups.) And, I’ve seen riders as equally talented and capable here, but they’re not six of them living down the road from me and they’re not going to take my horse for anything less than the equivalent of my mortgage payment per month. I realize, of course, in order to approx-

imate this system in North America, we’d have to either shrink the continent or move to one geographical area. May I suggest that we convince all of the North American breeders of German horses to move to Maine, the Selle Français to Massachusetts and Connecticut, and the Belgian to Rhode Island...and, yes,

I’ll be willing to share my beloved New Hampshire with the rest of the Dutch breeders. In addition, we’ll need to cajole about ten times our number into becoming Warmblood breeders. European breeders produce upwards of 60,000 foals per year. If all of the North American-based Warmblood studbooks combined, I doubt we’d make up 10% of that number. We’re going to have to convert a whole bunch of Quarter Horse, Morgan, Holstein, pygmy goat, and German Shepherd breeders to signficantly adapt their breeding populations in order to achieve these numbers. So if my plan works, we’ll have approximately 25 to 35,000 Warmblood breeders invading New England in the next couple of years. Let me say here and now, if we can make this happen, the Jagermeister is on me for the whole lot—but to heck with the tiny coffee cups—I’m sticking with my Starbucks venti! WT

Scot Tolman has been breeding

Dutch Warmbloods for the past 20 years at Shooting Star Farm in Southwestern New Hampshire. Read more of Scot’s writing at

shootingstarfarm.com.

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