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Anne Rawle was an accomplished event rider in her younger years.

for many years and is an unabashed fan. “While the AWR is a breeding registry that tracks the DNA and ancestry accurately, it’s also about using the best names around,” says Anne. “We have members who might use some Dutch Warmblood, or Holsteiner or American breeds such as Appendix Quarter Horse. Horses meet the regis- try standards for conformation and movement to be approved for breeding. One member who breeds for driving had some terrific trotting Standardbred-Morgan crosses for combined driving, and they are doing very well.” She adds, “If you want to improve type, you stay close to a certain gene pool but if you want to outcross you can often improve the gene pool.” “Our horses have been American Warmbloods for

generations,” she continues. “We’re in America and I like the system, especially for stallion licensing, because care, custody and control of the horse stay with the owner. The American Warmblood Registry is headquartered in Montana, not a foreign country, with a secretary who answers the phone in English in a similar time zone!” “Supporting American breeders is a part of our mission: to aid the breeder, not to criticize horses but to judge their

form and function,” explains AWR Executive Director Jody Jackson. “The scores are significant in that you can see if our program is improving the breeding programs. Scores have improved significantly over the years as breeders have learned to breed ‘form to function.’ In Europe they always breed form to function, meaning they don’t guess what they’re going to get; we encourage people to breed for a purpose. If you want to breed a jumper, breed for jumper conformation and temperament. The Rawles are very good at this. They started out as eventers and switched to dressage, now they’re switching their focus back to eventing and breeding more jumping lines. They’ve really studied their breeding program and have worked to develop the type of horse that can do both dressage and jumping. Anne is licensed with the AWR and we really appreciate her input as a judge.” The AWR, Jody says, tries to inspect all foals that are

offspring of registry-approved stallions. A stallion has an initial inspection at two and a half years of age, though an older stallion that enters the registry can go through the same process. This includes conformation, temperament, movement and free jumping ability. They then have three breeding seasons to prove themselves as sires, and then must complete a performance test in their chosen discipline (jumping, dressage, etc.) Once accepted at all three levels, a stallion is issued a permanent breeding license; prior to that they have a temporary license.

Case Study: Avebury WF

Watermark Farm is home to several sport horse stallions.

OWNERS OF YOUNG WARMBLOOD STALLION PROSPECTS have to decide which breed registry they plan to have their stallions “approved” by. To make it even more challenging, each registry has different rules and guidelines for the various credentials that a breeding stallion must earn. For example, some registries sanction the 10, 30 and 70-Day Stallion Tests requiring a certain minimum score, other registries hold their own testing programs, while others allow performance records in dressage and jumping achieved over time. Secondly, stallion owners must select which sport their stallion’s performance career will be focused on. Generally, it’s either dressage or jumping while eventing is rarely the sport of choice.

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The Rawles, active as they are with the American Warm- blood Registry, planned to have their young stallion Avebury WF approved by the AWR. When he showed an aptitude for eventing, the Rawle family decided to combine training and approval goals by sending him to Australian three-day event rider and trainer Ryan Wood, who works for Olympic eventer Phillip Dutton in nearby West Grove, Pennsylvania. “Avebury seems to have talent for every-

thing,” Anne says. “We’ll see how far he goes as an event horse but if he seems to prefer two-tempis or jumping five-foot jumps he can change direction. His mother’s full sister was a jumper but liked changing leads and doing canter pirouettes. She converted to competitive dressage in her teens and even competed at Grand Prix.” Avebury was born at Watermark Farm in 2001.

His sire was Adamant, who produced many upper-level competitors in both the dressage and eventing worlds. Avebury’s dam, Dynasty WF, was also bred and born at Watermark. She

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