/ Inspection

Inspections/Keurings in Alberta

KFPS Inspections or Keurings in Alberta are annually hosted by AFHA. KPFS judges from The Netherlands provide official studbook certification. The Keurings in Alberta are a great opportunity to learn more about your Friesian Horse, train your horse so that it may achieve its highest ratings, and connect with the local Friesian Horse community.

Keuring 2023: September

Inspection by judges of the KFPS Royal Friesian Horse Studbook.

Program (tentative)

  • Flag parade & opening
  • Explanation of juding a Friesian horse
  • Foal and Horse Inspections
  • Coffee and Snacks available
  • Free Lunch and BBQ Supper
    for participants and members


Past Keurings



The Keuring Process

The Keuring (inspection or judging) is an evaluation of Friesian horses according to the KFPS studbook (Koningklijk Friesch Paarden Stamboek). This horse registry registers mature Friesian horses; established in 1879, it is the largest registry of the breed with currently over 60.000 horses registered. The KPFS distinguishes itself from smaller independent Friesian horse registries with its essential requirements of breeding with KPFS-approved stallions only. Beyond this, not every purebred Friesian horse may enter the registry; entrance depends on the quality of the horse. The KFPS studbook emphasis on quality thus maintains a high level of horse-excellence among breeders and owners, for which the Friesian is renowned. Therefore, the AFHA Keuring (inspection) in Alberta is done by KPFS judges from The Netherland and North America.

Evaluation Criteria

The primary purpose of the Keuring is the evaluation and selection of Friesian breeding stock. The horses are evaluated on movements and confirmation. Currently the trend is towards a modern type of horse that is suitable for riding and driving.

The movement rating counts for 60% of the overall evaluation. Overall, movement should be:

  • elevated and light-footed with a moment of suspension.

Essential traits of the Friesian breed are:

  • a good reach from the shoulder;
  • ground covering power; and
  • flexion coming from the hocks and hindquarters.


Studbook and Classifications

The Friesians that are presented for judging, for both studbook and foal book, are rated with premiums which is an official ranking which is also recorded on the horse’s registration papers.


Foals are entered into the foal book after being judged during the year of their birth.

  • A first premium is best and accounts for approximately the top 5%.
  • Second is very good and accounts for approximately the next 35%.
  • Third is most common and is awarded to approximately the next 50%.
  • Some foals will not receive a premium.

A premium cannot be given to horses that are unsound, have unacceptable amounts of white, are of poor quality, are in poor condition or have serious faults.

Keuring/Judging Premiums for Foals and the Foal Book

Mares and Geldings

Most mares and geldings will change their registry to Studbook at age 3; however those that don’t qualify due to unsoundness, white marks, failure to meet the minimum height, or serious faults will not enter the Studbook and will remain in the foal-book.

When presenting an adult horse, they are once again judged on conformation and gaits. To continually improve the Friesian breed, mares and geldings are judged for admission into the adult studbook are ranked using a "linear score" sheet. This linear score is in addition to the premiums and assigns positive or negative point scores to the individual aspects of confirmation, breed characteristics and movement as exhibited by the horse.

Eligibility for Studbook Mare ore Studbook Gelding requires that they:

  • be registered in the Foal Book;
  • be at least 1.54 meters (15.0 hands) at the withers;
  • be black and have no white except for a small star or a few white hairs on the forehead or  muzzle: white is not permitted on the body, legs or hoofs;
  • be sound: unsound horses cannot enter the Studbook; and
  • be free of hereditary defects (mares with hereditary defects should not be used for breeding) and be rejected if they have any of these: ringbone, spavin, curb, bog spavin, swollen stifle joint, lameness, dished face, insufficient shoulder height, poor use of the hind legs, defects of the stifle or improper development of the hock.

Premiums are received depending on the final scores assigned by the judges. Not all mares or geldings receive prememiums. The 5 evaluative characteristics shown on the bottom of the linear score sheet are:

  1. Racial;
  2. Frame;
  3. Feet and Legs;
  4. Walk; and
  5. Trot.

Scores for Mares and Geldings

The following table, reproduced from the “2010 KFPS Keuring Program”, shows the average of the 5 scores required for the different inspection results:

Average Score



> 7.5

Included, 1st premium

Studbook star ("Stb Ster")

~ 7

Included, 2nd premium

Studbook star ("Stb Ster")

~ 6 -7

Included, third premium

Studbook ("Stb")

~ 6

Included, no premium

Studbook ("Stb")


Not included in Studbook

Remains in Foal Book ("vb")

Note that these marks are an average of the 5 summery scores: A low score in only one category can be offset by a higher score in another category, provided the low score is not too low: a horse with a 4 or less in any of the 5 criteria will not be promoted to the Studbook, and a horse with a score of 5 or less in any of the 5 criteria will not receive the star status.

Keuring/Judging Premiums for mares and geldings

Keuring/Inspection Day

When presenting a horse or foal for judging, the horse is required to be well groomed: a well-trained horse usually performs better. The horse should be presented in a white bridle, and guided by the “runners” dressed completely in white, to better see the horse’s gaits.

  • First, the horse is set up in the middle of the arena, as the judges walk around the horse to evaluate the overall conformation.
  • Next, the horse is walked in a triangular pattern, so the judges can see the horse’s walk from every angle.
  • Then the horse is evaluated at a trot, as the runners guide the horse in a big square.
  • Finally, the horse is lined up again in the middle of the arena, as the judges compare their scores and come to a final conclusion.

The foals will receive their premium right away, as the judges explain to the owner and crowd the reasons the foal received the premium. Adult horses will also receive their placement and explanation for this placement from the judges, except it the judges deem that the horse might be worthy to become Star. In this case, the judges will simply tell the owner to come back after all other horses are judged. All those horses allowed to come back will walk in a circle; the judges will once again judge them and then position them in ranked order. The judges will decide how many of the horses will receive the Star status, with either a 1st or 2nd premium, and which horses receive a 3rd premium with Studbook status alone. It is always an exciting experience for the owner and runner; however, the moment the judges reveal your horse is to become Star is most rewarding.


Predicates Explained

The horses are differentiated in quality within the registers by means of predicates. The predicates are based on the horse's own merit or based on the quality of offspring. In addition predicates can be based on exterior, sport aptitude, sport performances or a combination thereof.

Keuring/Judging Predicates overview

1. Star/Ster Predicate

The Ster predicate is awarded during inspections of horses from the year they are three years of age. To be considered for the Ster predicate the horse needs to meet minimum requirements for exterior, movement (in hand), and height at the withers (minimum height 1.56m/15.1 hands). The Ster predicate may be awarded to mares in the Studbook register, geldings in the Gelding Book, and Foal-Book stallions. The awarding of the Ster predicate for mares and geldings can take place at the same time as Studbook entry. Foal-Book stallions with the Ster predicate that are gelded keep their Ster status. Foal-Book stallions can become Ster at the first viewing of the stallion inspection in the year they are two and half years of age. 

2. Crown/Kroon Predicate

The Crown predicate is a predicate to which exterior and sport-aptitude requirements apply. Selection for the (preliminary) Crown predicate takes place during the Central Mare Show/Centrale Keuring, from the mares that during the breeding days and studbook inspections in that same year were awarded a first premium. Selection for the Crown predicate can in foreign countries outside The Netherlands also take place at the respective inspections abroad (outside The Netherlands). The requirements for consideration for the (preliminary) Crown predicate are:

  • minimum age is three years old.
  • for permanent Crown status the mare must complete an IBOP or ABFP test  with a minimum score of 77.0 points and an average of 7 for walk and trot. If the Sport predicate is earned that will also convert the preliminary-Crown status into permanent Crown status.
  • Minimum height at the withers 1.58m/15.2 hands.

3. Model Predicate

The Model predicate is a predicate to which exterior and sport-aptitude requirements apply. The best mares of the population are considered for the Model predicate. Awarding of the (preliminary) Model status takes place at the Central Mare Show/Centrale Keuring, as selected from Ster and Crown mares that during the breeding days in that same year were awarded a first premium. Selection for the Model predicate can also take place at the respective inspections abroad (outside The Netherlands). The requirements for the (preliminary) Model status are:

  • minimum age is 7 years old.
  • the mare must have produced a foal or have a foal on her.
  • for permanent Model status the mare must complete an IBOP or ABFP test before the end of the calendar year following the year in which she made preliminary Model with a minimum score of 77.0 points and an average of 7 for walk and trot. If the Sport predicate is earned within that time frame that will also convert the preliminary-Model status into permanent Model status.
  • minimum height at the withers 1.60m/15.3 hands.

4.1. Preferent for Mares

Mares registered in the Foal Book and the Studbook may become Preferent on offspring. The Preferent predicate needs to be requested with KFPS. Preferent status may be requested both by the owner of a mare or by the owner of (one of) the offspring. Preferent status may also be requested posthumously. Preferent status for mares is granted when the mare in question has produced at least four quality horses. Quality horses are considered:

  1. Ster or Model mares.
  2. Ster geldings.
  3. Foal Book Ster stallions.
  4. Studbook stallions.
  5. Stallions that made the second viewing of the stallion inspection.

4.2. Preferent for Stallions

The Preferent predicate can be awarded to stallions that have a lasting, special influence on the breed. For consideration for Preferent the quality of the offspring will be tested for the breeding-goal characteristics. The lasting value of a stallion is evaluated based on the offspring produced that have determining roles in the breeding of Friesian horses such as Preferent mares, stallion dams and (based on offspring) approved sons.

5. Performance-dam/Prestatiemoeder Predicate

The predicate Performance dam/Prestatiemoeder is awarded to mares that have produced three direct offspring that were awarded the Sport predicate.

6. Sport Predicate

The Sports Predicate can be awarded to mares, gelding, and stallions that achieve good results in competitive sport. The Sport predicate can only be obtained based on results achieved at shows registered with the " United States Equestrian Federation, United States Dressage Federation, American Driving Society" or "Koninklijke Nederlands Hippische Sportfederatie”/Royal Dutch Equestrian Federation (KNHS). The scores registered with USEF, USDF, ADS, or KNHS determine qualification for the Sport predicate.

a. Dressage Z1+5 Dressage (USDF) 5 scores of 60% or higher at third level or higher; or Z1 Level test 24 or test 26 with 5 scores of 60% or higher
b. Driving (Dressage) Z + 10 Obtain Ten points from FEI test #9 from at least 3 different FEI or 'R' rated judges.  The point system is as follows:  60%-65% = 1 Point, 66%-70% = 2 Points, 71% or higher = 3 Points. You must submit your score sheets to the FHANA upon completion of each event. FHANA will keep track of your points.  Once your horse has obtained the appropriate points (10 Points) you will be contacted that your horse has achieved the Sports Predicate.

FHANA and the KFPS have worked together to have the same requirements that are available to the members in the Netherlands.  If you have any questions please contact the FHANA office.

The Following links might be of interest:

  1. FHANA: Inspection Info
  2. FHANA: Rules and Regs-Juding
  3. IBOP and ABFP Tests
  4. Predicates Explained

Stallion Keuring

The Stallion inspection is part of the breeding program of the KFPS. During the stallion inspection, foalbook stallions are presented in judging rounds; on the basis of the results of this judging, these stallions can be referred to the Central Examinations. During the selection process, the stallions are subject to minimum requirements, some of which are non-subjective and others of which are subjective in nature. At the end of the selection process, the collected information and assessment is used to decide whether a stallion will be entered in the studbook register. The selection criteria are pedigree, degree of relationship to the population, exterior, movement, capacity for equestrian sport, quality of legs based on X-ray assessment, semen quality and other veterinary aspects. The Stallion Inspection Jury advises the Governing Board in regard to the registration of stallions in the studbook register. The stallion inspection also involves the inspection of stallions already in the studbook register.

The following link might be of interest:


External Links

Alberta Friesian Horse Association