Westfalen horses and ponies are well-known all over the world, with famous stallions such as Florestan I, Pilot and Cornet Obolensky, and superstars in sport like Damon Hill and Comme il Faut. The Westfalen studbook has been promoting breeding excellence since it was founded in 1904, focusing on solid-performing mare lines and rigorously selected and proven stallions, to produce impressive international results.
Key to the success of the Westfalen breeding program has been a consistent approach to selection and continuation of strong mare lines, as well as the expectation of world-class performance from stallions popular with breeders. Some traits associated with the Westfalen horse are harmonious, large framed conformation with uphill build, attractive, appealing face with large, bright eye, and elegant, athletic swinging gaits. Temperament is especially important for the Westfalen, with cooperative, brave natures preferred, along with a positive outlook with good willingness to work, whatever the discipline.
Westfalens shine in the international dressage arena – from Dr. Reiner Klimke’s Ahlerich to the inspiring Donnerhall x Rubinstein stallion Damon Hill, ridden by Ingrid Klimke and Helen Langehanenberg. More recently in the spotlight with his top position on the 2018 German breeding values chart is the popular Escolar, who like his famous sire Estobar is ridden by Olympian Hubertus Schmidt. The most famous Westfalen horse in the USA has been Legolas 92, owned by Four Winds Farm and ridden to the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio by Steffen Peters.
Jumper fans have no small list of Westfalen heros to look up to. Cornet Obolensky started his breeding career in Westfalia, siring an impressive slew of jumping and breeding stars who have shaped the direction of Westfalen jumper breeding, including Comme il Faut and Corlensky G.