Use and characteristics of the Czech Warmblood
In its homeland, the Czech Warmblood is known as the Český teplokrevník. It is representative of the typical European warmblood sports horse yet has some recognisable local features. They average around 16 hands (64 inches/163 cm) high. Their coat colours are mainly bay, dark bay, black, and chestnut, with a few greys. Occasionally vendors sell a Czech Warmblood with dun or palomino colouring. They are powerful horses with strong, dense bone. Their strong feet are considered to be relatively flat. Robustness and genuineness are some of the characteristics that riders admire when they buy a Czech Warmblood. They are noted for their thick manes and tails.
Origin and history of breeding Czech Warmbloods
Many people are aware of the famous stud at Kladruby, and the Kladruber riding and carriage horse breed which has been produced there since the eighteenth century. The origins of horse breeding in the region date back for at least two centuries before that. What is now the Czech Republic was an important horse-breeding region in the days of the Austro-Hungarian empire, with Europe-wide interest in their horses. Therefore, the tradition of breeding warmbloods is very well-established and today Kladruby is also the main stud producing the modern Czech warmblood. There are additional studs at Albertovec and Netolice. In the earliest period, the sixteenth century, the principal horse breeds and types used for the developing warmblood were Spanish and Italian (Neapolitan) horses. In the nineteenth and early twentieth century, breeds from neighbouring nations were used, such as the Hungarian Gidran, Furioso and Nonius, as well as the Przedswit which was a Thoroughbred cross. The Thoroughbred has been very influential on the Czech Warmblood breed in both direct and indirect ways. The stud book of the Czech Warmblood records the influence of many different German breeds too, as well as Selle Francais, Arabian and Anglo-Arabian horses. Today, the Bystrý is the best-known line and the one which is seen as critical to the development of the modern Czech warmblood sports horse. This line was established by a stallion foaled in 1919, who passed on some identifiable features in the form of a relatively steep and short fetlock and a healthy robustness. His descendants are also mainly bay horses. Because the ancestors of the Czech Warmblood were working horses taking on a range of tasks, they needed to be unpretentious and vigorous. They keep these qualities today now that they are mainly riding and competition horses.
Czech Warmbloods in equestrianism
Czech Warmbloods can participate in a wide range of equestrian sports, but their power makes them particularly appropriate for any cross-country riding or racing that involves jumping as well. Their attractive, imposing appearance makes them good dressage horses too. They are a good choice for teaching competition riders, since their good nature combined with jumping ability means they make excellent school horses for giving students confidence while they are advancing their skills.