The National Presentation of Breeding Horses was held in glorious summer weather at Gaddstaðaflatir in Rangárvellir, Hella, South Iceland, on Saturday, 27 June. The event was an all-round success with more than 1,200 people in attendance and a fantastic atmosphere among the audience (even though many people sat and watched from their cars and the outside area was divided into smaller areas due to gathering restrictions).
It was also possible to watch the show in live streaming with commentary in Icelandic, English and German on the website of Eiðfaxi, of which great many horse enthusiasts from 20 different countries took advantage. Until 6 July it will be possible to buy access to the streaming and enjoy the cream of the crop of Icelandic horse breeding online (click here).
In the presentation – which was organised by the Horse Breeders Association of Iceland, the Icelandic Agricultural Advisory Centre and Horses of Iceland, in cooperation with Rangárbakkar – the country’s 80 best horses were demonstrated, or the ten highest-judges mares and stallions in all age categories. Stallions with first and honorary prizes for offspring were also awarded. Skýr frá Skálakoti received the prestigious Sleipnisbikar trophy, which is the highest recognition in Icelandic horse breeding.
“The show was a huge success and the attendance great. Rangárvellir was at its most beautiful. The weather was sunny and warm and it was comfortable to be there. The horses were superb and we expected no less – they are all gæðingar,” says Þorvaldur Kristjánsson, horse breeding leader, horse breeding judge and one of the show’s organisers. “The plan was to honour and thoroughly present the top ten horses of each category and the turnout was high, more than 90% of horses were present. I’d like to thank their owners for coming because a show like this depends on a good turnout, naturally.”
The National Presentation of Breeding Horses was partly held because Landsmót, which was supposed to take place at Hella this summer, was postponed until 2022. Saturday’s experience shows that there is reason to repeat the event. “Everything worked out. The attendance was good and lots of viewers observed online,” states Þorvaldur. “It’s absolutely possible to organise a show like this again in between Landsmót so that owners of stallions with offspring have more opportunities to present their groups. It’s possible to develop this day as a fixed event for the future with more acts.”
Text: Eygló Svala Arnarsdóttir. Photos: Louisa Hackl.