Perhaps one of the oldest Warmbloods alive today, the Hanoverian has a decorated history that dates back to the 17th century.
It was in 1735, at the residence of George II, King of England, that the Hanoverian first underwent development. To produce a horse with all the desired qualities of a high-class, versatile equine, the breeding program incorporated Thoroughbred (for scope, spirit and speed), Holsteiner (for its distinct look), Cleveland Bay (for strength and enthusiasm), Andalusian (for its refinement, willingness and prowess), and Prussian stock.
By the latter part of the 18th century, the Hanoverian had evolved into an elegant and robust breed, capable of many working and sporting fulfilments. At one time, the equine was amongst the most popular mounts for the army, as well as being the chosen horse for coach work.
Due to the careful breeding that has gone into developing the Hanoverian, the breed remains relatively pure and is no longer at serious threat of dying out. Today, the horse is more commonly observed in leisure riding and eventing, and is well conformed for harness work, light draught and agricultural work, and several competition disciplines.
The average height for the breed is between 15.5-16.5 hands, and the most prevalent colours are bay, chestnut, brown, grey, and black.
In competition capacities, the Hanoverian is the most successful Warmblood on the planet. Champions include Top Gun, which won Olympic gold in 1992, and Dollar Girl, which won the World Cup in 1995.