The Westphalian Horse is no different than any other German Warmblood horse; it is named after the area in which it originates. Over the years, this horse has become an important part of the Olympic and National riding schools as it is located in Westphalia. This breed of horse bears a striking resemblance to the Hanoverian, although the Westphalian is a bit larger due to its ancestors performing farm work and performing other tasks for the army.
The background of the Westphalian horse is basically a refined version of other heavy horses that are used on the farmland. After the introduction of Hanoverian blood, it formed a horse with great conformation and show skill. Today, they are considered one of the best horses for show, but in order to be permitted for the breeding stock they have to pass a serious of tests that are sometimes vigorous. The tests are of character, pedigree, conformation, and riding are all a part of the horse's testing, which is accomplished over a period of four and a half years. These all must be done before they can be selected for the breeding stock.
Unlike in different parts of the world, in Germany breeds of horse are organized in the studbook by the areas in which they were bred and born and not by the horse's background. The Westphalian horse wasn't officially named a breed until 1826 when their registration was formed. The early stock of the registry was mainly based on a rare stock that was formed through the mixing of Thoroughbred blood. The concentration of breeding these horses took place after the end of the Second World War. Thoroughbred and Arabian blood was added to the breed to increase their speed, courage, stamina, and quality and as well as common sense and willingness which was added through the Hanoverian.
In the late 1970s, the competition ring took notice of the Westphalian when a horse by the name of "Roman" won the World Show Jumping Championship in 1978. In 1982, they did it again; they won the jumping event in the World Championships with a horse named "Fire" and then took first place in the dressage event with a horse named "Ahlerich". The Westphalian horse is a high spirited and docile animal; these days the breed is used for general pleasure riding and harness work as well as competitive carriage driving. It never ceases to amaze in the events of show jumping and dressage, and some even possess exceptional speed, which is needed to take part in eventing.
Unlike some other breeds; this breed's studbook isn't closed to the further infusion of other breeds of horse. So other types of horses can still be cross bred to reap what ever benefits the other breed might have.
Westphalia is actually the second most important source of breeding in Germany; they have an estimated 10,000 broodmares and 120 state stallions as well as many other stallions that are owned by private owners.