Jovee Pony Farm

About German Riding Ponies


(Branduardi M x Syrah)
Photo ©

(FS Pour l'Amour x Night Star I)
Photo courtesy of Hilltop Farm

(Parc Commando x Llanarth Ruddel)
Kentchurch Chime

German Riding Ponies, also called Sport Ponies, are between 13.2 and 14.2 hands with the conformation, movement, rideability and type to excel in the Olympic equestrian disciplines of dressage, jumping, eventing and combined driving.

In 1965 at an annual convention of German pony breeding associations, a Dutch New Forest pony breeder spoke of the need for larger riding ponies for the growing number of young riders. In response, pony breeders began breeding a larger pony.

European pony breeders imported British ponies, primarily Welsh, to cross with small Arabs, Anglo-Arabs and warmblood horses. By 1975, specific riding-pony types were becoming well recognized in the North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony regions of Germany. Registries such as Weser Ems, Hanover, Schleswig-Holstein and Westphalia established pony "books" within their registries.

The "Deutches Reitpony" (German Riding Pony) is graded and tested at keurings (inspections) for the individual registries, just like the full-sized horses that are eligible for the different European and North American warmblood and sport horse registries

As a result of this carefully managed program, in the mid-1970s the German Reitpony type began its rise to the top of international competition.

In 1983, the International Sport Horse/Oldenburg North America registry (ISR/Oldenburg NA) was founded. Based on the German program, the breeding goal for the registry's Sport pony Division is "to produce a noble and correct pony with dynamic, spacious and elastic movement, well-suited for dressage, hunter classes, show jumping, eventing or driving because of its temperament, character and rideability. It is a riding and competition pony for kids and young riders, and an elegant driving pony. The breeding goal is similar to the breeding goal of the German Riding Horse.”

To be entered into the ISR/Oldenburg NA registry, a pony must show the modern Sport Pony type and be registered with an approved sport pony breed (including Connemara, Haflinger, New Forest, and Welsh, as well as Oldenburg). They must also be presented for visual inspection, and are scored according to conformation, movement, temperament and rideability.

Unregistered mares of the sport pony type may also be approved for breeding, based on inspection alone. High-scoring mares are awarded Premium Mare status, to identify those individuals which are considered most desireable to improve the breed.

Stallions may receive a breeding license after passing a stallion inspection; stallions that successfully complete an advanced performance test or are very successful in competition may be awarded a Lifetime Breeding License. For more information about the ISR/Oldenburg NA registry and eligibility for ponies, please see

All of the ponies and small horses in Jovee Farm's breeding program are inspected and registered with ISR/Oldenburg NA and/or another of the recognized sport pony registries (Westfalian, Welsh or Half-Welsh).

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