Another source was likely the Irish Hobby, a now- extinct breed established prior to the 13th century. Legend, however, says that galleons from the Spanish Armada ran aground in 1588, and the Andalusian son board were set loose.
The Spanish horses bred with the native stock, refining the local ponies. Too much crossbreeding began to dilute the pony bloodlines, so the ConnemaraPony Breeders' Society, worked to preserve the breed type.
Today, Connemara's are bred worldwide in Ireland and Britain, as well as on the European continent, North America, Australasia, and South Africa. The adults are usually 128 to 148 cm (12.2 to 14.2 h; 50 to 58 in) in height, with a strong back, loins, and hindquarters, deep and broad through the ribs, and with a riding-type well laid-back shoulder and well-placed neck without undue crest, giving a good length of rein.
The head should be of pony type, broad between the eyes, which should be large and appear kind, and with a deep but refined jaw and clearly defined cheekbone. Permitted colors are gray, black, brown, bay, dun, roan, chestnut, palomino, and cream.
Known in Irish as the Carillon McNamara, the Connemara pony is a hardy, yet kind-hearted, breed of horse unique to Ireland. Connemara is blessed with moors and bogs that will shine in the sunlight while looking somewhat desolate, and mystical, in every other kind of weather.
This is where the Connemara pony comes from, where it learned to adapt to its surroundings and develop all the essential qualities it needed to survive. In 795 AD, an earlier version of the breed was among the many things the Vikings brought with them to Ireland, but it wasn’t until the Spanish Armada ran aground in 1588 that the Connemara pony was formed.
When the Spanish sailors of the armada unexpectedly found themselves in Galway in 1588 their Andalusian horses were set loose and began to breed with the wild Scandinavian ponies in the Connemara mountains. Connemara's ponies are famed for their kind eye and good nature, making them perfect for children's trekking as they are gentle, trusting, honest, and willing.
The ponies were used to pull plows, carry turf and haul in seaweed to fertilize the land, as well as bring the family to Mass of a Sunday. Despite their smaller stature, Connemara ponies adapted to the terrain in their local area by becoming fabulous jumpers, a trait they carried with them when they left the work fields behind them and entered the equestrian ring.
A 14.1 half breed Connemara named Stroller was one of only two horses to jump a clear round in the entire 1968 Olympics. Despite the Spanish influence mixing with the Scandinavian as far back as the 16th century, it wasn’t until 1926 that an official society was formed to protect the breed.
According to TheConnemaraPony.i.e., with further cross-breeding with Arabian blood in the 1700s and crossbreeding with Hackneys and Thoroughbreds after this, there were fears the bloodline was in danger of being diluted too much. Founded in Clifton, Co. Galway, by 30 local men, the Society aimed to protect and further develop the breed, publishing the ConnemaraPony Stud Book in 1926 to make it official.
Like the people of Connemara, the ponies can now be found far and wide, as their work ethic and sensibility put them in high regard around the world. Today, Connemara ponies are bred in Ireland, the UK, across Europe, in the US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
For along with great athleticism and versatility, the Connemara has a special kindness, a huge heart, and an ability to bond with their human handlers that is unique to this breed.” Acting as a suitable mount for either children and adults (they are a favorite in the US for middle-aged women), Connemara's can now be seen most often as show jumpers, in evening, or while exploring trails around the world.
In 1963, Dr Fred Wilshire imported the first Connemara pony, Island King, into the country. This hardy equine breed brings beauty and elegance to Ireland’s west, where it roams free among wildflowers and stunning coastlines.
Still, the Connemara pony is tough, with strong muscles and a stocky build to help them withstand the harsh Irish elements. Credit: Leo Day / FlickrLike much of Irish beauty, the challenging weather and rough terrain helped evolve the Connemara pony into a tough, resilient breed.
A muscular back, short, strong legs, and hard feet all lend well to the pony ’s natural environment. It is an agile equine that can navigate quickly across rugged ground and along dangerous coastlines, often in torrential rain.
Black Connemara ponies are rare but cello, a beautiful blue-eyed cream is common and looks stunning against the backdrop of the rugged Irish landscape. But what makes this Irish horse so attractive to us is that it is unique to Ireland and represents so much wild beauty found on this island.
The Celts were skilled in the handling of horses and are thought to have developed the breed from Scandinavian ponies brought into Ireland by the Vikings. Credit: @templerebel_Connemara / Instagram It is also believed that Arabian blood was added to the breed in the 1700s and that contributed to the pony ’s impressive strength for its size.
One strong pony was essential to run the farm successfully, which led to the Connemara pony building up stamina and determination over the years. Following this, only the best stallions from Connemara were used to reproduce the Connemara pony, leaving today’s breed as hardy and reliable as some of the earliest ponies in the west.
Their willingness to learn and trusting nature often gives the Connemara pony a significant advantage in show jumping and dressage. The breed is great to help young children build confidence in the saddle and learn about pony management and welfare.
They originate in the west coast of Ireland, a rugged yet beautiful landscape. The Connemara region is plentiful in peat bogs, lakes, mountains, beautiful coastline and breathtaking scenery.
The harsh climate and rocky terrain has allowed the Connemara pony to adapt and survive, it is for this reason they are known to be hardy. In Irish, they are known as the “Carillon McNamara” it is said that the Connemara pony is one of Ireland gifts to the world.
The exact origins of the Connemara pony are uncertain, but was mainly influenced by the Scandinavian and Spanish blood. Their Andalusian horses were let off loose, and they began to breed with the wild Scandinavian ponies in the west of Ireland.
In the 18th and 19th century they tried to refine the breed by adding the thoroughbred and hackney. Today Connemara ponies are bred worldwide including the UK, Us, Europe, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.
They have a gentle disposition, love human affection, are inquisitive are very easy to handle. The Connemara pony is a safe and sensible breed, which makes them a fantastic mount for both children and adults alike.
They have a natural jumping ability with a rectangular frame which also makes them suitable for dressage. The most dominant color is gray and dun, there are also bay, brown, black, chestnut, roan and palomino.
This strong, sturdy pony was used to plow to land, pull the cart to carry turf, rocks and seaweed, the were a mode of transport carrying the family to mass on a Sunday, as well as a mount for hunting, racing and local shows. He won open championship by clearing fences that were 7 foot in height.
Representing Britain he competed in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico with rider Marion Cakes. Dun drum: Tommy wade Connemara gelding Dun drum was supreme champion at the Wembley horse of the year show where he set a nuisance record of 72.
It was the 1st time ever that a rider had so many wins, let alone with the same horse. Theses are just a small selection,there are many more famous Connemara ponies that have made history. Dr. Fred Wiltshire imported a pony called “Island King” into the country.
Today the breed can be seen in many country across the globe such as Ireland, UK, Sweden, Finland, Norway, Germany, Belgium, France, Denmark, Italy, South Africa, Switzerland, New Zealand, America, Canada, Australia, Austria. 9) The Annual International Connemara pony show is held in Clifton Co. Galway Ireland each year.
The largest display of Connemara Ponies can be seen at the International Connemara pony show which is held in Clifton in August each year. The show attracts many tourists from overseas which make up 60% of the attendance.
This was founded in Clifton, Co. Galway in 1926, where 30 local men came together and vouched to protect and develop the breed. Whether you want a pony to enjoy the quiet life with or want a partner who can up the pace when needed, a Connemara is the perfect choice.
The ideal happy hacker or an exemplary competition pony, a Connie won’t be out of place in any home. If you pick the right pony with correct conformation and movement (don’t forget to check out the breed standard), and combine it with correct training and production you can go far in the show ring.
Plus, a good Connie can usually compete on the flat and over fences due to their athleticism. A judge will certainly struggle to keep their eyes off an outstanding Connemara with floating paces, flash and presence.
While individual temperament certainly comes into play, a Connie of average height is the ideal size for an adult as well as a growing child. And it’s not just in the working hunter pony sector they can reign, you’ll often find Connie's out on the hunt field, in the show jumping ring or tackling three-days events.
If you want to keep up with the latest from the equestrian world without leaving home, grab a HGH subscription Native ponies are a popular choice with many owners due to their easy-going natures and low maintenance needs when compared to bigger horses.