The registration of a mare in any section of the mare Studbook can only take place if she fulfills certain criteria.

  • She must be three years old or older
  • She must have valid pedigree papers issued by the NZHS or other warmblood breed association that is recognized by the VHW, or …
  • If she is a Thoroughbred mare, she must have at least four generations of pedigree recognized by the New Zealand Racing Conference.
  • She must pass her mare Classification.
  • If she has not been DNA tested prior to entry in the broodmare Studbook, this will have to be done before her first foal can be registered.

Inspection and Classification

For breeding purposes mares also undergo a selection process. As well as fulfilling pedigree requirements, mares have to pass an inspection in which their breed type, conformation, movement and correctness of gaits are assessed.

In Germany, this is known as the Studbook Inspection. In New Zealand, we call it the Mare Classification.

Mare performance testing is available in New Zealand, but is not compulsory for the breeding approval of the mare.

» Mare Classification Handbook (PDF)

If you think that your mare would be eligible for registration in the New Zealand Hanoverian Studbook, make contact with the Studbook keeper, who will work with you to establish whether your mare meets the criteria with regard to her pedigree. Then an inspection will be arranged.

The mare Classification is carried out in New Zealand by our appointed Classifiers, or by a representative of the Hanoverian Verband.

The mare is evaluated for

  1. breed and sex type
  2. quality of conformation, which entails separate marks for head, neck, saddle position, frame, forelimbs and feet, hindlimbs and feet, height (approximately 15.3hh or over)
  3. Correctness of the gait
  4. Impulsion and elasticity (refers to the trot)
  5. Walk
  6. General impression and development
  7. Overall evaluation

The mare’s canter when turned out loose, as well as free jumping, may be considered in addition as individual criteria when making the overall evaluation.


Elite Mares

The Elite Mare candidate status in New Zealand corresponds to the State Premium Mare Aspirant (St.Pr.A.) in Germany.

The Elite Mare status in New Zealand corresponds to the State Premium Mare (St.Pr.St.) in Germany.

To earn the title “Elite Mare candidate” in New Zealand, the mare must achieve:

  • overall score of 7.5 in her Classification
  • overall score of 7.5  in her Mare Performance Test.

In order to become an “Elite Mare”, the Elite Mare candidate must have a registered Hanoverian foal

The Elite Mare award is not a performance award, but a breeding award and as such, indicates that the mare is an excellent broodmare prospect. This, of course, is why she must prove herself by actually having a foal, before the award can be granted.