When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Ballerina » Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:43 am

I think a lot of things have to be brought into consideration. Understanding the faults of the mare and the stud - not doubling up on mutual problems. If mare is a maiden, breed to an experienced stallion with a record of producing sound get who get to the race tracks. If the breeder likes the type embodied in the mare, look for a stallion to complement that type. Surely take into consideration nicking, but not necessarily make it gospel, but it should factor into the decision. To me, soundness and health would be my top priority. I'd be wary of a lot stallions rushed off to the breeding shed before they could finish their 3 year old year. I've never bred a horse. My experience which is a great deal comes from 40 years of breeding dogs. These are the lessons I've learned over the years. I can't see where it would be any different in breeding horses. My mantra has always been, first make them sound; then make them pretty. I know pretty doesn't count in making a good race horse, so lets say - first make them sound; then make them runners.
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Cladan » Sun Jan 14, 2018 3:37 pm

Breed the best to the best and hope for the best. That said, confirmation is key, stats and algorithms, not so much :)
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Treve » Mon Jan 15, 2018 2:02 am

There was an informal photo of Chrome standing square in the shedrow head on and it definitely showed him as nearly knock-kneed. I was quite surprised when I saw it, it was posted from sometime around his retirement on this here forum. :P
I do like Colerful Bride's overall confo, I'm just not a fan of her topline (Sea Mona's was better, I just wish we'd gotten clearer confo shots of her entire body). The sleepy eyes really is of no concern to me, that's just aesthetic.
Looking at all of these mare's dams, the production records are similar though I think Sixtyfivenorth's dam Lady Heroine has the edge due to a larger sample size and having produced a multiple stakes winner. CB is in between and Sea Mona's is similar but slightly smaller sample. I'm too tired to look past that but it could give you more things to pour over and study.
You should go with your gut, when it comes down to it, once you've got all the other information on hand.
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Diver52 » Mon Jan 15, 2018 5:23 am

FWIW a friend who is in the Chrome fan group asked my opinion and I loved Sea Mona's pedigree as a fan, plus her gentle temper--Storm Cat 3x3 and Seattle Slew 3x4, and from the Man o' War male line. Fanwise, that did it for me!
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Ridan_Remembered » Mon Jan 15, 2018 10:03 am

Treve wrote:There was an informal photo of Chrome standing square in the shed row head on and it definitely showed him as nearly knock-kneed.


Here is a knock-kneed horse (not a Thoroughbred).
Image

Here is the 3-year-old Chrome after he won the Hollywood Derby.
Image

This is my favorite video of Chrome because is shows his action close up, including a segment when he is coming straight toward the camera. It also has slow motion segments. From the front, the viewer can compare Chrome to other horses racing right next to him. Chrome's action is as straight and true as they come. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qr6QDRJGUBE

As a final point of comparison, here is a photo of Secretariat and his groom, Eddie Sweat. Red had about the straightest front legs you'd ever want in a horse, and yet just the way he's standing at that moment, one might say he looks "nearly" knock-kneed. Photos never tell the whole story. They merely freeze a small fraction of a second.
Image
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Treve » Mon Jan 15, 2018 12:21 pm

Ridan_Remembered wrote:
Treve wrote:There was an informal photo of Chrome standing square in the shed row head on and it definitely showed him as nearly knock-kneed.


Here is a knock-kneed horse (not a Thoroughbred).
Image

Here is the 3-year-old Chrome after he won the Hollywood Derby.
Image

This is my favorite video of Chrome because is shows his action close up, including a segment when he is coming straight toward the camera. It also has slow motion segments. From the front, the viewer can compare Chrome to other horses racing right next to him. Chrome's action is as straight and true as they come. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qr6QDRJGUBE

As a final point of comparison, here is a photo of Secretariat and his groom, Eddie Sweat. Red had about the straightest front legs you'd ever want in a horse, and yet just the way he's standing at that moment, one might say he looks "nearly" knock-kneed. Photos never tell the whole story. They merely freeze a small fraction of a second.
Image


Your initial post asked for a sincere opinion, I gave you mine... you seem to have made up your mind, and I'm not here to change it, if this shared characteristic between the mare and the stallion don't bother you, as I said before, go with your gut :)
And furthermore... I did say I personally would prioritize bloodlines over conformation in my first response to this thread if the foal was being bred to race, rather than commercially - I expressed the very notion that good horses, even great horses have overcome conformational and biomechanical flaws which is why I do not think it is the end of the world. And it is easier to improve on conformation than to improve a bad family or questionable bloodlines. Much harder. But if conformation is the end goal, then in my opinion when you've got a horse like Chrome that is mostly well conformed wouldn't you want to maximize your chances by avoiding a mare with a similar issue? He could improve a mare on virtually any other aspect, it seems odd to pick a mare that has the one lone similar flaw if you're breeding for confo.

Neither of those photos depict a horse standing square, or on even ground but that photo post hollywood derby does show a little bit what I'm thinking of. His front left especially, and googling pictures of him yields that same odd angle with his front left over and over again, including pictures of him as a foal and a yearling. For comparison here is Secretariat as a weanling (notice that while Secretariat could give the slight impression of toeing out, his knees don't angle in or seem tied together). And neither of the photos you posted would be held against either horse. But it is interesting to me that the photo you posted the first time happens to be one where his front left is in movement and you therefore cannot see it.

Regarding the video, there isn't a single shot of him standing square where his legs are visible, and while I was the first to point out during his 3yo campaign that he had an incredible stride, towards the end of the video when they show him trotting in slow motion, he has a bit of... I'm not sure what it is called in English in French we say "le cheval billarde" likely due to his knees.

And that photo you showed as an example of knock-kneed is exactly the kind of angulation I was thinking of in that Chrome photo that I'm thinking of. My initial reaction when I saw it was something along the lines of "holy sh*t, no wonder he twisted his knee in the Pegasus, it's a testament to the horse that it hasn't happened more often". I'm not knocking Chrome, Ridan, he's a beautiful horse with wonderful conformation overall, he was talented and I wish him much success in the shed.

ETA: I found the discussion and the photo I was thinking of. I did not see Chrome in person so I can't attest to Retrospectiv's comments, and I don't recall the video Izvestia is talking about... but I knew I wasn't the only one who had noticed.
A filly named Ruffian...

Eine Stute namens Danedream...

Une pouliche se nommant Trêve...

Kincsem nevű kanca...


And a Queen named Beholder
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby TBird » Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:24 pm

In all the conversations I've heard about California Chrome this is the first time I've heard anyone argue vehemently about how correct he is.
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby stark » Mon Jan 15, 2018 1:55 pm

Confirmation 101 with long time trainer Bruce Headley

https://twitter.com/K_Headley/status/952581010234908674
I've found it easier to tear up tickets at 8/1 instead of 8/5.
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Ridan_Remembered » Mon Jan 15, 2018 3:09 pm

@Treve, I'm truly sorry to have offended you. That was not my intent. My original question had to do with what value to place on the TrueNicks score vs. a mare's conformation. Somehow the conversation turned to Chrome's conformation which, overall, is really very good. Here is a link to where you can see Chrome's conformation video from the Taylor Made Stallions website. Make up your own mind. http://www.taylormadestallions.com/hors ... 24702.html

@TBird, I have not been "arguing" that Chrome is correct. Only that he is not as badly conformed in front as some have claimed. This is why I posted multiple pics to provide points of comparision, and vids to enable people to see for themselves rather than take anyone's word.
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Re: When choosing a mare...TrueNicks or conformation?

Postby Retrospectiv » Mon Jan 15, 2018 6:28 pm

Agreed with others. Chrome is built like Daffy Duck. He's crooked from his knees down. Always has been.
Take it for good or bad, it's just how he is. Knocking other horses won't change that fact.
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