question re: vertigineux

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sweettalk
Posts: 1954
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Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:19 pm

i'm actually sort of afraid to ask, but, oh well. we have some very knowledgeable breeders here, so hopefully someone can teach me something.

her son souper spectacular (giant's causeway) was three time winner in 9 starts, looking sort of ok in allowance/aoc races. he was gelded.

right now, eblouissante (bernardini) is 2 for four, if we want to toss her meltdown in her only stakes company that's ok. she was second today in an allowance nw2, so she looks to be about the same caliber as her half brother.

vertigineux as a grand dam has 6 named grandfoals, 5 have raced, none have won. what makes eblouissante more valuable as a breeding prospect than souper spectacular?
summerhorse
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Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:32 pm

Because she is a mare and mares only have one foal a year. Mares also can look totally useless on the track and turn out to be good producers. Stallions are pretty plentiful and would not get much of a chance to prove they are anything beyond average.
BaroqueAgain1
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Thu Feb 13, 2014 9:41 pm

IMHO, it comes down to the fact that a mare will have only one foal a year, making her produce relatively more valuable than a related stallion's one breeding fee. A good broodmare band may be worth more than all the stallions on the grounds, but it's a long game...a very long game.
Stallions need much more on their resume to become worth keeping intact. Souper Spectacular was mediocre, at best, on the track. His own sire, Giant's Causeway, is still alive and active, and also has dozens of sons with much better race records standing at stud around the world.
Souper' just may not have had enough outstanding characteristics besides his pedigree to outweigh his pedestrian performances. Maybe his conformation or character were lacking...maybe there was zero interest from any farm to stand him. Maybe he was a bad actor, and it was turning into a real pain in the azz to keep him intact.
Just some things to consider.
sweettalk
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:45 am

i'd be more afraid of a mare only in that if she drops a foal that can't run, that year (if you're very intent on her producing a serious race horse) is like... a loss? kind of? if that makes sense? you'd have a higher chance of the stallion making it if you are selective about the mares he sees, but i get that not every breeder is ken ramsey and can supply those mares. @BA1, i didnt consider any of those, actually. so thanks for a gentle reminder (john henry was proof of that if i recall, gelded for behaviour reasons, not that it helped, heh.)

how high would eb's value be at this point, vertigineux's recent produce record, her sisters' produce record and other direct family ("cousins" and the like) taken into consideration?

2 horses that are similar on paper as far as credentials, but one being more valuable was something i really want(ed?) to learn more about, but as i was initially met with ridicule i really didn't want to ask any further. so, thank you for reading/explaining for me.
BaroqueAgain1
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:54 am

I can't speculate on Ebby's value ATM, but she sold fairly recently for $2.1 million.
Is it a gamble on whether she will be productive as a broodmare? Of course....but breeding racehorses is still 'breed the best to the best...and hope for the best.'
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Allspice
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:19 am

Her female family as a whole is strong. Look at the entire thing, rather than just Vertigineux alone. What has her dam produced? What did her 2nd dam produce? 3rd, 4th? And what have their daughters produced? If the answer is "consistent blacktype up to the present", which is the case here, her race record matters very little. Think of it this way, Vertigineux, her dam For the Flag and her dam In the Offing weren't stakes winners, but in the end that didn't matter because they produced stakes winners. And so did their daughters/granddaughters (well, For the Flag and In the Offing's did...jury is still out on Vertigineux).

It's very different with stallions. Pedigree alone isn't enough to make them stand out, there is too much competition.
Souper Spectacular is apparently still owned by Live Oak and lives there. At least that's what I found via Google. I couldn't find why they gelded him, it could have been a number of reasons, like BaroqueAgain pointed out.
Izvestia
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:32 am

Something to think about- there are a lot of nicely bred colts out there that don't amount to much on the track. The best thing to do is snip them and hope they retire as someone's riding horse. Souper Spectacular may have been a complete nut, or perhaps he had trouble with his man bits? He isn't really from a good sire-producing family. Nicely bred colts that weren't great racehorses are a dime a dozen. Look at some of the pedigrees that get moved to Indiana or South Korea- some of those horses were a BIG deal when they retired to stud, and now they're WHO? Is Souper Spectacular really going to get many mares to breed, based on being a half brother to Zenyatta? You can go to some far more talented Giant's Causeway colts, like First Samurai (who is proven), or Eskendereya, Creative Cause, or even Hold Me Back. Heck, even City Wolf--- look at the sire producing family on that guy!

That all being said...
There is value in Eblouissante (sure I spelled that wrong), regardless of whether she is an allowance horse or not. Vertigineux has produced two (remarkable) race mares in Zenyatta and Balance, both of whom are still young and have only gotten started as broodmares. So what if Mr Besilu actually hasn't done anything on the track...he sold for $4.2 million. Some people in this business aren't about winning races, they are about selling well-bred horses at Saratoga or Keeneland.
If Eblouissante is bred to a nice stallion and produces something that doesn't have screwed on backwards legs, and has some quality, they'll make money selling her babies at auction. OR, they'll keep it and run it. Better off selling it, IMO.
sweettalk
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 3:08 am

i guess what really makes me curious is seeing a lot of bubble wrapped colts - regally bred and as soon as they win any race of any importance, all of a sudden they're much more valuable at stud to the point where they'll retire at the end of the 3 yr old season for no reason other than they'll make more money in the shed. so seeing mares thought of like this, especially when lately we've had some STELLAR mares that run a season or two more than we expect, especially compared to the colts, just, i really want to learn the breeding side better.

i enjoy reading what everyone's telling me, and appreciate the time/effort put in to explaining and giving examples.
BaroqueAgain1
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 4:05 am

sweettalk, you might want to check out some of the racing sites like Bloodhorse and Paulick Report to look for articles and/or blogs that discuss breeding and pedigrees. I know Bloodhorse usually has an article every week or so focusing in depth on the pedigree of a horse, perhaps some promising three-year-old that just won a stakes. Those have helped me understand TB bloodlines a little better.
Have fun.
Last edited by BaroqueAgain1 on Fri Feb 14, 2014 3:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Flanders
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 6:54 am

I remember when Live Oak pensioned and gelded High Fly, there was an article on Bloodhorse. The things that were said in the article really stuck with me. I felt it was why, down the road, they decided to geld Souper Spectacular.
http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/ ... hen-gelded
hadrianmarcus
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 7:43 am

Flanders wrote:I remember when Live Oak pensioned and gelded High Fly, there was an article on Bloodhorse. The things that were said in the article really stuck with me. I felt it was why, down the road, they decided to geld Souper Spectacular.
http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/ ... hen-gelded
That is a great link. Breeders like to highlight how pampered the stallions are...but that article brought home some of the real limitations for a stallion at the breeding farm, such as socialization and sometimes exercise. I always liked the fact that Three Chimneys galloped their stallions a mile and a quarter under tack six days a week. I hope they continue that practice. A couple old Bloodhorse articles highlighted this practice and stressed it was not only for the physical well being on the stallion but mentality as well.
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Ridan_Remembered
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 12:19 pm

One of the greatest broodmares of all time, La Troienne, had 7 starts with 0 wins, 1 place and 1 show. However, she produced 15 foals, 10 of whom won, and 5 stakes winners. The Thoroughbred as we know it today would not exist without the influence of La Troienne and her offspring.

Another great broodmare, Somethingroyal, had only one start and finished out of the money. She produced four stakes winners including Secretariat and his half-brother, Sir Gaylord. Both were influential sires.

One of the greatest sires of all time only raced four times as a two-year-old. He was retired due to a bowed tendon after setting or equaling three track records in his four starts. He never raced farther than 5 1/2 furlongs. His name? Raise a Native

My point is that while performance on the racetrack is more important for a colt to get a chance as a sire, there are examples of important sires who were unraced or, like Raise a Native, raced only a handful of times. The opposite is true for mares. There are far many more instances of broodmares who were unraced or never did much on the track, but who went on to become important broodmares. For reasons known only to nature, most top winning mares don't make top broodmares. There certainly are examples of some top winners who go on to great records as producers, but they are more the exception than the rule.

Young stallions, on the other hand, must have something to offer people who will pay their stud fees. Until they have progeny to demonstrate their effectiveness as sires, all there is to go on is their race record, conformation, temperament, pedigree and, these days, what the sales market wants. If any one of those things is lacking, the horse is not likely to get a chance at stud.

As much as I personally don't choose to see them that way, horses are livestock. Livestock must pay its way. Racehorses pay their way by making money on the racetrack or producing in the shed. Today's breeding industry is all about the sales. A mare can produce a pretty baby by an established sire, and six months to a year later her baby could bring in hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars without ever having set foot on a racetrack. A stallion can't do that. He pays his way through stud fees.
Izvestia
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Fri Feb 14, 2014 1:29 pm

I just wanted to add to Ridan_Remembered and say that horses like Raise a Native, Danzig, or even Malibu Moon, showed BRILLIANCE, but were lightly raced because of injury. We wouldn't call Souper Spectacular brilliant. He really is ordinary.
halo
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Sat Feb 15, 2014 1:22 pm

It has nothing to do with the fact that mares only have one foal vs stallions having a crop. It has to do with the fact that with thoroughbreds, the female family is the point of value with them. Ebb...whatever's foals will always have a remarkable female family involved. Her foals will always be "out of a half sister to Zenyatta and Balance". Its all about the family.

With a stallion from that same breeding, there is no female family to produce on. His foals will have the family of the mares he is bred to, and likely a less than stellar racehorse won't have the same mare power to produce from that a top stallion will. So that unless, for some reason, he turns into the next War Front, his foals will have little to no value.
Acadiana
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Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:06 pm

halo wrote:It has nothing to do with the fact tpedigrees only have one foal vs stallions having a crop. It has to do with the fact that with thoroughbreds, the female family is the point of value with them. Ebb...whatever's foals will always have a remarkable female family involved. Her foals will always be "out of a half sister to Zenyatta and Balance". Its all about the family.

With a stallion from that same breeding, there is no female family to produce on. His foals will have the family of the mares he is bred to, and likely a less than stellar racehorse won't have the same mare power to produce from that a top stallion will. So that unless, for some reason, he turns into the next War Front, his foals will have little to no value.
Although, War Front was both well bred and a talented grade 2 winner. Souper is really only one.

But yeah, it's all about the mare in the TB breeding world. The "x factor gene" has been talked and researched about a lot and can kind of explain this reasoning. A strong female producing family means a lot in a pedigree for a mare because it's been shown to continue in many instances, but just being well bred is a lot more hit and miss for a stallion.

Plus, I always look at it as it's easier to breed a mare "up" to a stallion who was more talented than she was. Such as, Ebby will go to an accomplished, proven stallion versus Souper who would have been bred to more than likely not so talented mares and expected to improve them.
mimi6920
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Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:37 pm

I agree with a lot of what is being said, but I think there is a lot more mystery than you guys are suggesting. For example, Maclean's Music had one career start, and sure his Beyer was high for that start, but a lot of horses achieve brilliance one time and are never heard from again. Despite this, he found a farm to stand him at stud, and from what I hear, he generally got a nice book of mares.

Wilburn won a grade two race and a few allowance races. Furthermore the horses he beat were not world beaters even though he did win a grade two. Yet somehow off to stud he went where he bred almost 170 mares in each year he has been at stud.

Elusive Quality won two grade three races as a five year old. The rest of his victories were all allowance races. Freud was sent to stud on pedigree alone (full brother to Giant's Causeway). In twelve starts, he won one race, the Special Maiden Empire Stakes.

I guess what I am saying is, on pedigree alone Souper could possibly have stood at stud especially in a market like New York. In most cases, the best sires are those who come from a strong female family, and he came from a great one.
TBird
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Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:43 pm

Admin wrote: Not that any of that is untrue, but I don't believe it's the reason behind the differing values.

For males to have any significant breeding value, then it has to have won a graded stakes (preferably a G1) and have a decent pedigree and conformation. In general, it has to have these things for a stud farm to buy or want to stand the stallion prospect (based on the marketability of the stallion to broodmare owners).

With a female, it only takes one owner to think she's worth enough to be bred.

There were about 45,000 mares bred in 2013 -- to only a few hundred stallions (not counting backyard single offspring type stallions). It's a numbers thing.

If you're talking about Thoroughbred mares, that number was actually 34,000. https://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing ... ine-in-rmb
halo
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Sat Feb 15, 2014 6:08 pm

mimi6920 wrote:I agree with a lot of what is being said, but I think there is a lot more mystery than you guys are suggesting. For example, Maclean's Music had one career start, and sure his Beyer was high for that start, but a lot of horses achieve brilliance one time and are never heard from again. Despite this, he found a farm to stand him at stud, and from what I hear, he generally got a nice book of mares.

Wilburn won a grade two race and a few allowance races. Furthermore the horses he beat were not world beaters even though he did win a grade two. Yet somehow off to stud he went where he bred almost 170 mares in each year he has been at stud.

Elusive Quality won two grade three races as a five year old. The rest of his victories were all allowance races. Freud was sent to stud on pedigree alone (full brother to Giant's Causeway). In twelve starts, he won one race, the Special Maiden Empire Stakes.

I guess what I am saying is, on pedigree alone Souper could possibly have stood at stud especially in a market like New York. In most cases, the best sires are those who come from a strong female family, and he came from a great one.
Just because Maclean's Music has gotten a good book of mares, it doesnt guarantee he will make it as a stallion. One start going 3/4 of a mile usually does not a stallion make. He may be the exception to the rule, but it will be a big exception.

Wilburn was a very high priced 2 year old. He also beat Shack and Calebs Posse in the Indiana Derby, which they may not be world beaters, but they were certainly near the head of their class. He also was the favorite in the BC Mile, which was his last race. They were pulling teeth to get mares to War Front; his small crops attest to that. Elusive Quality only had 2 grade 3's, but he was a world record holder at a mile. Freud...well, had he not been in a state bred program, his numbers wouldnt be nearly as impressive. Most of his stakes winners are restricted.

So no, theres really no rhyme or reason to what stallions will hit, but a horse has to have SOMETHING to offer, other than being a half brother to a good mare who has yet to produce a winner.
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