Lights on for stallions
We sport horse breeders remember the days when we had a list of approved stallions and that was it. It was great and it was simple.
The problem was that if a stallion was not on the list, you did not know another thing about him. I remember one particular stallion whose heart was so bad that the vets on inspection duty refused to lunge him. Nobody knew what happened, so the stallion went home and continued to cover mares.
Then we got three classes of stallions -- Approved, Section 1 and Section 2. Once we understood the classification, this was also a good system.
However, in recent years this system was increased to six categories and led to some confusion among breeders.
From this year on we will have a new 'traffic light' system of stallion classification.
I am all for programmes that make things simple.
- The green light -- A stallion with a green light is 'Recommended for Breeding'. The stallion has reached the required standard in all sections of the inspection process.
A stallion with a green light has passed a vet's examination, meets the standard for conformation, movement, athleticism and performance or has progeny that meet the required standard.
- The orange light -- A stallion with an orange light has a 'Preliminary Recommendation for Breeding'.
This means that the stallion has passed the vet's examination and has reached the initial standard for conformation, movement and athleticism. But, the stallion must still complete either the riding and/or competition section.