Thursday, February 27, 2020

Greenshoe - 3 Year old Trotter of the Year

I had a request for me to look at a trotter such as Greenshoe to give my take on his pedigree and see if he was also the result of a maternal build-up of maternal influence like Shartin N. His pedigree does, in fact, exhibit many of the same characteristics. Like Shartin N he is, for starters, by far the best performer in his maternal line with very little to show past his third dam in terms of high earnings or speed. I had not looked in depth at his pedigree previously but I am not surprised at what I found.

In my book about maternal lines, Queen Among Queens, I devote a chapter to examining the development of some of the most popular and prolific maternal families and show the point at which they suddenly expanded into production of high speed and earnings. I called this the "trigger" effect because it seemed to happen when certain key maternal influences first came together. Those influences are all based on X-factor mares also described in an earlier chapter on the trigger effect. Names such as Adioo, Hatteras, Kathleen, Manette and Oniska and the inbred daughters Margaret Parrish and Helen Hanover, are all key X-factor sources that when combined or doubled up in a pedigree can step up the performance of the individuals that inherit them.

In my research I have determined that the X-factor traces back to England and the so-called Ancestral Mom through the daughters of Diomed, a stallion imported to North America in the late 1700's. His legacy is not restricted to standardbred mares but also is evident in the thoroughbred breed and many of those early North American mares show up in other ways in the maternal lines of standardbreds, in particular through the daughters of  American Star and Mambrino Patchen with extensive thoroughbred dams that feature Diomed. That is where the family of Greenshoe begins.

His maternal family name is Lady Bunker born in 1873. She was by Mambrino Patchen and out of an American Star mare. The second dam is by the thoroughbred Tiger from an unknown mare and whose dam is Jane Hunt, the maternal family of one of the aforementioned trigger mares Kathleen. That combination in itself is a good foundation but there is one key ingredient needed to complete the package and that is an intersection with the legacy of  Miss Russell, the Queen Of Queens.

Lady Bunker had two daughters, one of which ended up in Europe. The other one, Welcome Bunker, also had two daughters by Bobby Macgregor who brought nothing extra to the table but is responsible for Axcharm, the 10th dam of Greenshoe. Two generations of nothing added then we get to Farr (1934)who is notable only for the fact that we will see her later. Her daughter Fardean is the first on the line to inherit a maternal boost as her sire is Dean Hanover whose dam is inbred no fewer than four times to Mambrino Patchen including the trigger mare Hatteras. Still no Miss Russell however.

Fardean was bred to Blaze Hanover who contributes Adioo, the first link to Miss Russell, to the mix and their daughter, Gypsy Blaze, is then bred to Carlisle that makes her a double copy to Adioo maternally. The next step is a big one when Carlisle Blaze meets Speedy Crown who brings both Oniska and another trace to Adioo into the family. Up until now,  through 10 generations the family has produced just one performer with more than $30,000 earned and that is Carlisle Blaze. Her daughter by Speedy Crown is called Southern Crown, the best of her 14 foals with $88K made. Of the 14 foals there are just two by Speedy Crown but it was Southern Crown that became the 4th dam of Greenshoe. Her best was by Texas, a double/double pedigree colt that made $552,000. Her second best was Southern Drawl ($113k) by Super Bowl and that was the one that really triggered the maternal line since he brings in the legacy of the great Margaret Parrish for the first time.  Her full sister Blaze of Fury was not bred to Super Bowl and produced just one winner of $114K and no fillies of note

Southern Drawl was bred to Balanced Image and produced the third dam of Greenshoe and the first time the Noble Victory line is introduced. Balanced Image brings in maternal support from Adioo, Oniska and Hatteras maternally in X-factor position but more importantly his maternal dam goes back through Farr (1934) to the same source as the maternal line of Greenshoe, the combination of Mambrino Patchen and American Star. We now have a pedigree that combines double copies of every possible X-factor trace to Diomed. Southern Drawl earns $430,000 and is bred to Yankee Glide, producing Sheer Soul, a TB pattern and DD pattern mare and 2nd dam of Greenshoe. Now we are ready for the final ingredient that produces the explosion in the form of Greenshoe.

Sheer Soul is bred to Donato Hanover whose dam is by Donerail, a carrier of Margaret Parrish and in addition has another Margaret Parrish line maternally through Rodney, the same one as in the dam of Super Bowl. Donato's dam, D Train, is therefore a double copy to the most important maternal influence of the X-factor in the trotting breed. This powerful maternal influence has a downside. however, especially for a budding stallion. It predicates that the stallion will be essentially a producer of great fillies and for Donato Hanover that is very much the case. He has five million dollar winners and the top four are all fillies and all of them have Margaret Parrish maternally and are double copies to the great mare accordingly.

Greenshoe's dam, Designed To Be, is the fifth best filly with $663K made and he was her first foal. Her second foal is the million dollar yearling Maverick.

Adding lustre to the pedigree of this great colt and stallion prospect is his TB pattern pedigree since he is by a Valley Victory line sire and from a dam that is inbred to the Valley Victory line. He is also a DD pattern through his combination of Noble Victory and Speedster lines maternally that are duplicated in the maternal lines of Father Patrick and his sire Cantab Hall. That Noble Victory line that was picked up along the way is a crucial element in the profile of the best by Father Patrick. Every one of his top performers has a Noble Victory line in the dam - just another thing to look for in the search for a Champion.

I am sure there are some that say this is all 20-20 hindsight but I am constantly reminded of the words of Marg Neal in an interview with Dean Hoffman for Hoofbeats magazine in 2001.

"We have been conditioned by the restriction of catalogues and advertising to view our horses, at most, as three generation animals. There are many people out there that will tell you there is no reason to look beyond the grandparents of any animal. I thoroughly disagree. It is, however, a handy position to take for those unwilling to do their homework"

" There is a model of breeding that is like a pattern, and the pattern persists over generations, although, of course, the names change. I like to see a mare that is inbred and a sire that is not."

Pedigrees - Patterns - Profiles - Percentages


Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Shartin N - 2019 Horse Of The year

In researching my book on the maternal lines of Standardbreds called "Queen Among Queens" I found a book called Patterns Of Greatness by Alan Porter, a book about thoroughbred breeding. There was one quotation in there that spurred my interest in the evolution of maternal lines and the influence of special individuals. He urged breeders to "delve deeply" into a pedigree to discover the underlying genetic strengths which are not readily apparent in the first few generations. As he said

"This can reveal that one particular back ground cross has been built up to a point where it dominates a pedigree and reaches a critical mass reinforcing vital genes to the point where they explode in the form or a dynamic performer"

Shartin N is a perfect example of this scenario.

He further speculated that close inbreeding maternally can bring about  positive mutations as he referenced Marianna Haun's book on the X-factor, a genetic inheritance carried on the X-chromosome of the mares on the maternal line.

That may sound a bit airy-fairy to most readers but it has been a key consideration of mine since reading and writing about it and indeed was a factor in my recommendation to purchase McWicked, the 2018 Horse Of The Year by McArdle. Now we have a similar situation with the 2020 winner of the Dan Patch Horse Of The Year in Shartin N. It is a long story so bear with me because in part it goes back to the very beginnings of the standardbred breed maternally to a daughter of Bartlets Childers, foundation sire of the thouroghbred and to his full brother Flying Childers, the founder of the Standardbred breed. To read the full story of these individuals you can find it in Queen Among Queens available by download from the website.

In the near term the pedigree of Shartin N revolves around the presence of Tar Heel maternally as it did with McWicked, and as indeed it did for many of McArdles top perfomers since it is the most consistent factor in his stallion profile. Shartin N is by a son of McArdle called Tintin In America, who like McArdle also has a maternal line that is dominated by the influence of Tar Heel, one of the best broodmare sires of the past fifty years, and appears in the maternal lines of other great broodmare sires such as Albatross and Bret Hanover.

Tar Heel's influence on maternal lines comes from his dam by Volomite whose dam was by San Francisco whose own dam was Oniska, a 2x3 maternal inbred to the X-factor influence through Lida W, a daughter of Nutwood, the best son of Miss Russell, the subject of my book "Queen Among Queens".

Shartin N's dam, Bagdarin, goes back seven generations to a mare called Protege by Jack Potts who was one of the first great broodmare sires downunder and his dam was by Steiner from a daughter of Nutwood called Miss Marjoe. The dam of Protege was Abyssinia who brings a maternal trace through the dam of World Champion Arion whose dam was Manette by Nutwood. Protege, therefore is an X-factor double to Miss Russell, a pretty good starting point.

Protege had one daughter, Chenault, by U Scott who was then bred to Bachelor Hanover whose maternal family is one of the top maternal families in Minnehaha that is also one of the longest since it is the one that goes all the way back to that daughter of Bartlets Childers in the late 1600's.

The mating of Bachelor Hanover to Chenault produced Bravine, Shartin's fifth dam. By coincidence, perhaps, the fourth dam of Tintin In America, Zenover, was a descendant of one of the best maternal families in Australia/New Zealand and she too was by Bachelor Hanover and from a mare by U Scott. That makes Shartin N an X-factor double to its source , the ancestral mom herself, The Spanker Mare. But that is just another component of her maternal strength, there is much more added in the next three generations that built up into the explosion that is Chartin N.

Bravine foaled Kiatina by Fallacy whose maternal line contributed a North American link to the X-factor through two daughters of American Star. Kiatina was then bred to Noodlum, a son of Bachelor Hanover, whose maternal line brings in another trace to American Star through the dam of World Champion Dexter, the fastest son of Hambletonian, as well as doubling up the family of Minnehaha.
The breeding to Noodlum produced Kinsale, third dam of Shartin N, and she had six daughters but only two of them, both daughters of Save Fuel, had success as broodmares, and that was when the pedigree met up with Meadow Skipper for the first time through Save Fuel's dam by that sire.

Slatina is the second dam of Shartin N and her full sister is Chivasso who, when bred to McArdle, produced the first decent performer in this entire maternal line to date in McDana N who made $165,000 mostly in the United States. She now has another of her sons, Italian Delight N, a recent import, currently racing in Yonkers Open competition as a result of two wins at the Meadowlands taking a record of 1.50.1.

Slatina was bred to Live Or Die whose dam, Mica Lobell, is an X-factor double to Tar Heel, and whose maternal line goes back to yet another daughter of Nutwood called Stray Moments and three more traces to American Star. This was exactly the kind of breeding needed to provide the fuel for the fire lit by Tintin In America in the breeding to Bagdarin, the first female in the maternal line to beat 2:00 with a win in 1.57.4.

Tintin In America has a dam that is a maternal X-factor double to Tar Heel and as a filly Shartin N inherits that bonus to her own maternal traces to Tar Heel through her own dam. This is in addition to the interesting X-factor doubles to Bachelor Hanover and to Meadow Skipper.

In recent times I have also noticed two pedigree patterns, which I code as DD or TB, that occur often in top individuals. Shartin N is an example of the TB pattern where the Adios/Hal Dale sire line of Mcardle is inbred in her dam through sons of Adios and Good Time for an added bonus.

This affinity of Tintin In America for Tar Heel maternally is evident in his best performers with the next best , also a filly, bred in similar fashion but perhaps not with the same long term build up maternally. His sire, McArdle shows the same affinity for Tar Heel with the vast majority of his best being from mares that are X-factor doubles to Tar Heel or are X-factor doubles themselves as a result of McArdles own maternal doubles to Tar Heel in his each of his first three dams.

McWicked had the added benefit of having a DD pedigree pattern where the maternal lines in his dam are the same as those in his own dam and those of his sire. The DD pattern has also produced such recent champions as Greenshoe, Six Pack, Manchego, Mission Brief, Gimpanzee, Hannelore Hanover and Always B Miki among others while TB patterned champions include Jimmy Freight, Warrawee Ubeaut, and several of the best by Muscle Hill including Marion Marauder, Propulsion, and Green Manalishi.

My fascination with the Tar Heel influence, in addition to supporting my recommendation to buy McWicked as a result of four of his first five dams being double copies to Tar Heel or his dam-sire Volomite, pointed me to my first and only credit as a breeder. That was in the form of Scarlet Chaser, from a mare inbred to Tar Heel. His sire was Hussy Chaser, a colt I bought as a yearling for $1,500 on the strength of him being from a mare that was also an x-factor inbred to Tar Heel, and he went on to be the second richest Maritime bred in his day earning over $520,000. I got him back when he retired and then looked for the right mare, one with the Tar Heel double  and found one in Lucky Hare, a daughter of Precious Bunny. The resulting colt, Scarlet Chaser retired last year after making over $240,000 and being race timed in 1.49.4 to become the fastest race-timed colt ever bred on PEI and the fastest and richest Island bred colt by an Island based sire.

Thank you Alan Porter.