This year's version of the Canadian Open, to be held on Sunday 14th, lists just 164 yearlings, a far cry from the previous sales that often topped 300 entries. That was before the Liberal government gutted the breeding industry and the effects of that move are now seen here. Not only is the number down but most of the good mares have obviously been bred to other jusrisdictions so the quality has taken a big drop too. Old standby sires like Camluck, Mach Three and Angus Hall are still there but they are now serving a depleted and weaker mare population. Not that there is any great competition with just a handful of new sires like Big Jim and Manofmanymissions to share the leftovers with.
The pacing yearlings will no doubt be highlighted by the ones in the second crop of Sportswriter who has been the dominant sire of two year olds in the Ontario Sires Stakes. New sires Big Jim and Vintage Master will also get some attention.
Sportswriter has just five in this sale. His sire profile is quickly being established and shows a definite preference for No Nukes line dams as well as those with Big Towner maternally. Not surprising since his maternal lines are Jate Lobell - Big Towner. That group makes up 10 of the top 16. There are five by Cam Fella line dams all of which are linebred to Meadow Skipper. The best one, though, is from a mare by On The Road Again although he too traces through to Most Happy Fella and the dam is the dam of the great Rainbow Blue so is an exception in more ways than one.
Big Jim has 7 entries and you can get a pretty good idea of what to expect there by looking at the best by Allamerican Native and Always A Virgin, both sires that share similar maternal lines to Big Jim featuring Big Towner and Albatross. Albatross is a big factor in the mares with 22 of the best 32 by Allamerican Native and Always A Virgin having that sire or one of his sons maternally and five of the others showing Big Towner. Overall the best are split 50-50 between Most Happy Fella line dams and non-Meadow Skipper line dams with each of them showing Big Towner in 5 of their top 16.
Vintage Master has five yearlings. He is a virtual copy of his sire Western Ideal (maternal lines of Abercrombie - Meadow Skipper) being a No Nukes line sire with Artsplace (Abercrombie) and Most Happy Fella (Meadow Skipper) maternally so you can expect him to like the same kind of mares as his sire. They are in a general category of sires that prefer non Meadow Skipper line dams with the exception of Meadow Skipper linebred dams. In Western Ideal's case the ratio is 12 to 4 for his top 16.
The big news for the trotters will be the first crop of Manofmanymissions, the fast but quirky son of Yankee Glide, who has since left to stand in Ohio. With 13 yearlings his is the second largest group, next to Angus Hall with 14 entries. He has a unique maternal line of Garland Lobell - Super Bowl and there is no active sire with foals racing with that combination. Cantab Hall has a Garland Lobell dam with a Super Bowl son third dam so may offer some clues but the key will clearly be Super Bowl. Sires with Super Bowl or Bonefish second dams invariably do best with Super Bowl line dams or those with second or third dams through Super Bowl. Similar sires include Hard Rock N Roll and Keystone Savage with most of their best ones keying on Super Bowl or Bonefish maternally in addition to Noble Victory lines. The Noble Victory line brings Angus Hall and Balanced Image mares into play especially those with Super Bowl.
I will post the sire profiles for the sires in the Canadian Open in the PM Online library. Tomorrow we will look at the OHIO Jug sale also taking place Monday 15th.