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Faster and better

Equestrian and racehorses all over the world are currently shod with materials based on aluminium and/or iron. This procedure has been the tried-and-tested practice for centuries and no one has seriously considered optimising the horseshoe with regard to its mass and acceleration in combination with other qualitative considerations such as, reducing stress on joints, etc.

Winner AG took up this challenge, qualitatively investigating all relevant physical and medical influencing factors. We have come to the conclusion that a newly developed horseshoe made of carbon and Kevlar offers elementary advantages. "Faster and better" is our goal.

"Faster" because using carbon for horseshoes results in a lighter product and the horse thus needs less energy during a race, making it “faster”.

"Better" because, in comparison to conventional materials such as iron or aluminium horseshoes, the new product provides key advantages when viewed from a medical perspective. This reflects the high priority which we give to “health”, primarily with regard to the hoof mechanism and the amount of strain put on the horse’s joints and tendons. These are the two advantages which ultimately make for a “Winner”.

…a matter of physics

„Power is the ability to provide large amounts of energy in a short time to bring a mass (horse) to your destination in a specific time. If you want to increase the speed, then more power will be required. If, however, you want to increase the speed using the same amount of power, then the mass must be reduced.»

During a race a horse requires its energy for a number of purposes such as to accelerate and decelerate and to overcome air resistance and the friction between its hooves and the ground.

«The influence of mass on the hoof and hence energy consumption is 38 times greater than if it were located in the saddle area. The reason is for this is the hoof speed (120km /h), the square of which is incorporated into the equation for motion energy (Newton's 2nd law, Isaac Newton, 1642-1727).

A 50% reduction in the horseshoe’s weight (60g instead 120g) is equivalent to a 9-kg reduction in saddle weight.

Extensive studies have been carried out on this subject and were based on the following model assumptions:


Steel: 4 * 200 g = 800 g.
Aluminium: 4 * 127 g = 508 g.
Carbon: 4 * 65 g = 260 g.

Model assumptions

Racecourse  2000 m
Mass Horse 450 kg
Mass Jockey  50 kg
Velocity Centre of Gravity (vCG) 16.7 m/s (60 km/h)
Speed Hoof 102 km/h
Jumping Distance  6 m (333 gallop jumps)

Momentum exchange between the horseshoe and the horse’s body (kinetic energy of the relative velocity).

Energy expenditure

: Number of jumps
: Mass of the entire horseshoe
: Relative velocity forwards and backwards
: Velocity of horse’s center of gravity
: Proportion of energy temporarily stored in muscles, tendons and ligaments

Steel (0.8 kg): 27.8 kJ
Aluminium (0.508 kg): 17.6 kJ
Carbon (0.26 kg): 9.0 kJ

Weight in the saddle

The translation of energy expenditure to weight in the saddle is based on two model assumptions:

  1. For an average racehorse on good ground, one kilogramme in the saddle accounts for a lead of 2.5 m.
  2. Energy expenditure for a 2000-m racecourse: 1200 kJ (10 kW / 13.6 PS).

This can save 1.4 seconds over a race distance
of 2000 metres.

The research findings…
…The basis for trainers’ and farriers’ success

«Faster and better». An area investigated by highly qualified scientists at the University of Zurich’s physics, veterinary medicine, and material technology departments.

The result of this research is a horseshoe which is a global first in the field. It incorporates carbon and kevlar fibres and composite materials (epoxy resin matrix) and is manufactured using a hot press process.
The shape has been adjusted to reflect the latest findings on ergonomics and the foot rolling mechanism.

SF1 TV programme ‘Einstein’ showcased Winner. On 9 April 2015 it broadcast a report on Winner AG’s new product.

Watch the video

‘Schweizer Fernsehen’ TV station – ‘Einstein’, 9 April 2015

In horse racing horseshoes can make all the difference between winning or losing. The lighter they are, the better. For over a year now a Grisons-based farrier and his partner have been working on developing a new, much lighter horseshoe made from carbon. ‘Einstein’ shows the biggest challenges faced by the two inventors and how the latest prototype of the “hoof carbon” performs in a race. (video time 7:28 minutes)

Material specifications

Weight: 61 grammes (e.g. Size No. 6)
Material: Mix of carbon and Kevlar fibres (throughout)
Process: Hot press process with an epoxy resin matrix
Sizes: 5 sizes for front and back hooves (as per size table)
Lifetime: 4 – 5 weeks.

Hoof-side characteristics

  • The ridged surface facilitates adhesion of alternative synthetic horn fixings (nail-free shoeing).
  • A slight angle on the inside makes for less pressure on the sole.

Ground-side characteristics

  • A 2-mm elevation of the inner edge increases stability and “gliding” on turf racecourses.
  • The special profile increases grip and reduces the risk of falls.
  • An abrasion guard made of steel with double web reduces abrasion and increases service life.

Nail holes

  • The nail holes have a diameter of 4 mm.
  • The majority of commonly available horseshoe nails can be used for shoeing .

Product range / Sizes

Size No. Front hoof  Back hoof

4 120 120 120 120
5 125 125 125 125
6 130 130 130 130
7 135 135 135 135
8 140 140 140 140

Scope of delivery


1 package contains 2 front and 2 back horseshoes (2+2), available in Sizes 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

How to shoe

The “cold shoeing” process should be used. The basic shapes (as per the table of dimensions above) are based on natural hoof shapes. It is thus not necessary to bend shoes to shape respectively not possible due to the carbon material used.

Corrections can be made using a grinding belt (do not use a hammer or an anvil).