Australian Riding Pony
The Australian Riding Pony is a breed of pony in Australia that was introduced in the 1970s. Originally, the Australian Riding Pony had British Riding Pony, Thoroughbred and Arabian bloodlines. British and New Zealand bloodlines are a major contributor in the Australian Riding Ponies of today. Artificial insemination has also played a role allowing more bloodlines to be associated with the breed.
Horses are not native to Australia so all horse breeds that inhabit the continent have been imported or bred there. The Australian Riding Pony Stud Book Society was formed around 1980 as a result of other riding ponies participating in Royal Shows. In order for a breed to be entered, it was required to have at least three crosses of approved breeds.
The Australian Riding Pony is a small breed ranging in height from 50 to 58 inches. Australian Riding Ponies have small heads and ears and have a solid color. They resemble elegant show horses but are much smaller. They have free flowing lower action, typical of older breeds.
The pony is mainly used by children and small adults for riding, but also competes in dressage, show jumping, combined driving, gymkhana, mounted games, and horse shows.
Image Caption: Australian Riding Pony. Credit: Cgoodwin/Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 3.0)