Great Britain's Mountain and Moorland Ponies
The Welsh Cob Section C
The Welsh Section C is also referred to as the Welsh Pony of Cob Type. It is one of Great Britain's mountain and moorland ponies.The Welsh Section C is one of the 'large' native ponies. The others in the group are the Connemara, Dales, Fell, Highland, New Forest and Welsh Cob Section D.
There are four distinct breeds of Welsh pony. All originated in the Welsh hills and all are tough, sure-footed and intelligent.
In 1535, the Breed of Horses Act issued by King Henry VIII decreed that all stallions under 15 hands and all mares under 13hh should be put to death. This was to force the breeding of larger horses, particularly war horses suitable to carry the knights of the era. Many Welsh farmers released their ponies into the wild, inaccessible hills and thus the Welsh pony was saved from annihilation.
By contrast, the Sections C and D are solid and chunky with a spectacular trot. The Welsh Section C should not exceed 13.2hh. He has a compact body. The original Section Cs were produced by crossing Section As with the Welsh Cob Section D.
It is strong and active but should display a pony-like character and as much substance as possible. The eyes are large, bold and set widely apart. The neck is inclined to be quite crested in mature stallions. The shoulders is well-sloped and the back and loins muscular. Cobs should be deep through the chest. The hindquarters are lengthy and strong with no suggestion of the croup sloping off. The hocks are powerful and straight, showing no tendency to turn in or out. The hooves are well-shaped and dense and the fetlocks display a moderate amount of silky feather. The tail is set high and both mane and tail are profuse.
It is in the action that the Welsh cob truly shows his colours. The movement is bold and free with the strong hocks giving tremendous impulsion. The trot is fast and eye-catching with the whole foreleg extending as far forward as possible in the trot. The hocks flex under the body giving tremendous drive forwards.
Piebalds, skewbalds and spotted coats are not permitted in purebred animals.
The Welsh Cob is wonderfully suited to driving disciplines. His extravagant and ground-covering trot is shown to great advantage in a wheeled vehicle. He also makes a good riding horse. He is able to live out year round and is truly a family pony. Being so solid, he is up to carrying weight and his smaller height makes him an easier mount for older riders who may not be as agile as they once were.
Welsh ponies have contributed to the founding of several other breeds and can be relied on to improve whatever they are crossed with. The mares are popular choices when breeding polo ponies, producing offspring that are agile and quick.