When I started out in 1999 to buy miniature horses, all I saw was ponies in type, not horse types .. So I started my own research to see what would be the best breeds to cross to get the horsier type. After checking out...
Arabs.... too big
Welsh....too hairy and still pony in shape.
Timour Pony.....couldn't find one.... . Eventually did.
I came across a horse encylopedia and discovered the breed Caspian. At that time there was only 400 of them in the world..I managed to purchase 5 purebred Caspians that was only one to two generations away from foundation stock. What interested me in the Caspian is that they are they Type 4 of the four Types that govern the looks and breeds of what we know today. This helped me choose the Caspian as I was using a breed right back to the basic. You see, the purebred Caspian heights ranges from 10hds to 12 hds. Ususally this size equine is termed as a pony being under 14.2 hds, but world wide equine professors term the Caspian breed as a HORSE because of its bone and conformation structure. To me Caspians are a good way to go with breeding miniatures as it is puting the ancestor of the Arab in and because they are horse it is puting the horse in as well.
The other interesting thing is the Caspians carry a small resessive gene, which means if they can genetically breed small, they will. This has come out in my herd in the 2nd generation of crossing the miniature with the caspian. A filly I have is 15 months old and she is still only 31 inches tall. I don't think she will mature over 33 inches.