Sunday, August 25, 2013

A Record Smasher

Last night at the Charlottetown Driving Park a Maritime bred two year old filly set a record - not that unusual you say ? In this case, however, with the filly going in 1.55.1h she not only broke the track record for two year old fillies but also the mark for any two year old pacer in the Maritimes as well as setting a seasons record for fillies in Canada on a half mile track.

The breeder of this phenom is none other than my horse owning partner Bill McNeil of Saulsbrook Farms in Windsor, Nova Scotia. The dam of Saulsbrook Alana is Atlanta Girl, purchased by Bill in the 2006 Harrisburg sale for $10,000 and trained down by his son Alan who you might remember as the lad who bought Lis Mara as a yearling on my recommendation, broke and raced him then sold him at four to race on and make oalmost $2.3 million lifetime.  Alan goes to the sales each year looking for reasonably priced fillies to sell as three year olds after they have qualified and shown promise racing. In the case of Atlanta Girl, also bought on my recommendation, she made it to the races at two and took a mark of 1.57.2f  but she did not come back at three so based on her early ability Bill opted to add her to his small broodmare band rather than sell her.

Bill and I get together each spring and go over his mares and it was decided to breed her in 2010 to Western Paradise - Why ?  Western Paradise is Abercrombie - Meadow Skipper maternally, just like Western Ideal, and that sire has done best with Abercrombie line dams and especially those mares with second dams through Most Happy Fella. Atlanta Girl is by Real Artist and from a dam by Cambest, son of Cam Fella. An added bonus was that if the match produced a filly she would be inbred maternally to Helen Hanover through two daughters of Ensign Hanover, son of Helen Hanover.

This was to be her third foal since she had been bred twice to Royal Mattjesty with limited success. Those breedings were made because there was a partner in Atlanta Girl that had a breeding share for that Ontario based stallion which turned out to be not a very good reason for choosing a stallion. Needless to say I was not in agreement on that mating given the pedigree.

Just before Alana went through the Truro yearling sale I got a call from Reg Macpherson asking me about her pedigree. What could I say - "I think she will be just fine Reg" . He bought her for $10,000 and it looks like she is "just fine" and then some.

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