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  1. #1
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    Default World Class Dressage Sires (Part I)

    OK -- I am slowly backing out of breeding. I have an option to sell my best broodmare, but I would like to breed her one more time. In the past, finances have always been an issue, so I've gone for "the best bang for my buck," sort of stallions. All have been approved and tested, but some were younger and unproven, and some were good, marketable, popular sires, but I would be the first to admit they were not "world class."

    So before I let this mare go, I'd like to breed her to a really top-notch stallion; save my money and go for broke (so to speak ).

    Obviously, you need to fit the stallion to the mare, but it got me to thinking: how do you qualify a stallion as "world class?"

    So tell me who you think fits that bill as a dressage sire (he can also be a good jumping sire as well)?

    Ones that come to mind without hesitation would be Weltmeyer, Briar, Sandro Hit, Rubinstein, Donnerhall.

    Of course, two of these are deceased, but I believe their reputation was firmly in place prior to their death.

    How do you define such a sire?

    Edited to add: I realize that using such a sire doesn't guarantee quality; I did breed to Weltmeyer once and the mare was decidedly average -- maybe even below average. But I would think it WOULD increase the chances of getting quality -- that sort of reliability would be part of what would make a "world class" stallion.



  2. #2
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    I would look at the top FN breeding index stallions and figure out who would complement your mare the best.



  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by back in the saddle View Post
    I would look at the top FN breeding index stallions and figure out who would complement your mare the best.
    Well, of course I've thought of that, but in terms of dressage stallions, aren't those rankings based on the scores of the MPT?

    In jumping competition, where $$ is awarded, they are looking at mature get out there competeting.

    But in dressage? Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought the FN values were based on inspection scores. If not, how do they quantify dressage show scores?

    Also, do these include stallions standing in America? ARE there any world class dressage stallions standing in America?



  4. #4
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    Hmm..well what is your mare like? Is she an above average mare? If you bred an above average mare to Weltmeyer and got a below average offspring I would be very surprised! I guess what I am saying is that if you want to produce something pretty exceptional you need a mare that is either from a very good producing mare family or is quite special herself. Then you need that in the stallion as well.

    If your mare is super and you want a pretty sure thing I think you need to decide what it is you want to make better about her and then look at all the very top dressage sires and eliminate the ones that won't improve what you need improving.

    It would be really helpful to know more about the mare though because even the best stallion won't do much without the right mare.....
    www.svhanoverians.com

    "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.



  5. #5
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    There are so many aspects to think about here. Are you breeding to sell or breeding a potential GP horse to keep? The choices for a "sell" horse are very different to a keeper horse.

    Does your mare have linebreeding in her pedigree or is she from a diverse genetic background? If she is linebred you can consider stallions with diverse genetic makeup 2-3 generations back. If she isn't linebred you would be much safer choosing a stallion who is tightly linebred so you have a better idea of what he will pass on.

    What characteristics does she tend to pass on? For selling you mostly need to think about appearance and gaits, especially if you're going to sell the offspring as a foal. For keeping you need to consider how much trainability and soundness her offspring inherit. Are the paces of her offspring the sort that are adjustable so they can be developed into the highest levels of collection?

    When you make a shortlist of stallions try to find out how many foals they have had and how many of those foals have gone on to compete at the highest levels in dressage. It can be surprising how some less famous stallions are actually better producers than some of the bigger names. But if you are breeding to sell you may find that the less well known but better producing stallion is less marketable than the famous one.

    Then from your shortlist of stallions you need to decide which one suits her in appearance and tempermanent the best and which one carries the bloodlines you want to add to her pedigree. Then, if possible, go and see your shortlisted stallions in the flesh. There is nothing more informative than actually seeing a stallion for real to help you decide if he is a good match for your mare.

    And all the above is why is takes so many months to choose a stallion.

    If you do post answers to some of my questions (especially whether the foal is to sell or to keep and your mare's pedigree and her strengths and weaknesses and what she tends to pass on) then I'll try to come up with some stallion suggestions.



  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyzteke View Post
    Ones that come to mind without hesitation would be Weltmeyer, Briar, Sandro Hit, Rubinstein, Donnerhall.
    Jazz, without a doubt.

    A few others to consider are Flemmingh, Don Schufro, De Niro, Ferro, Rohdiamant, maybe also Rousseau. Some people may argue about Don Schufro and De Niro and Rohdiamant, but there are also some folks who have doubts about whether Briar and Sandro Hit belong on your list.

    LOL, just realized I forgot these guys, who also belong on your list - Brentano II, Florestan, Gribaldi.

    And of the ones I mentioned - Gribaldi is gone and Rohdiamant is close to infertile these days (and frozen is pretty much worthless for both of them).
    Last edited by DownYonder; Jun. 28, 2010 at 07:48 AM. Reason: added a few names, etc.



  7. #7
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    I don't think there is any more Flemmingh semen around - usless someone has some saved in a tank somewhere.
    Tranquility Farm - Proud breeder of Born in the USA Sport Horses, and Cob-sized Warmbloods
    Now apparently completely invisible!



  8. #8
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    I was going to say Jazz.

    I have a super Rousseau filly out of my Sandro Hit x Donnerhall mare, but you need the right mare for him.

    If I were you I would go with an oldie but goodie, one that is spectacular and a "classic" (as in Jazz, Donnerhall, etc).

    Is Brentano II semen still available? For the right mare, I would love to use him.

    I also love Florencio but you really need the right mare for him also; some of his offspring are less nice than others (he is a little hit or miss that way, but when they are nice they are superb).



  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by YankeeLawyer View Post
    I was going to say Jazz.

    I have a super Rousseau filly out of my Sandro Hit x Donnerhall mare, but you need the right mare for him.

    If I were you I would go with an oldie but goodie, one that is spectacular and a "classic" (as in Jazz, Donnerhall, etc).

    Is Brentano II semen still available? For the right mare, I would love to use him.

    I also love Florencio but you really need the right mare for him also; some of his offspring are less nice than others (he is a little hit or miss that way, but when they are nice they are superb).
    I remember your filly from her inspection. My two were stabled next to yours

    Question--what kind of mare do you think is right for Rousseau?



  10. #10
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    Brentano II, Gribaldi, Jazz, Donnerhall.

    Gribaldi is (was) my dream stallion. I have loved that stallion even BEFORE Totilas.
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  11. #11
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    Others that come to mind would be Hohenstein (and Caprimond), Argentinus, Sandro Hit..... I'm sure I can come up with more.

    Spectrum.



  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Callaway View Post
    I remember your filly from her inspection. My two were stabled next to yours

    Question--what kind of mare do you think is right for Rousseau?
    Hi Callaway,

    I think Rousseau does better with a more modern mare - one that is leggy and not too heavy. He is a big boy and brings a lot of good qualities but I would worry about producing a tank if bred to a smaller or heavier mare. I am very pleased with our filly (I plan to keep her); she is a very good mover and has a cool personality. I would be happy to discuss via pm if you are interested in him, but generally I think he is a great stallion and I would use him again.



  13. #13
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    I know some won't agree but if you are breeding for yourself I would avoid Jazz. He is undoubtably one of the best sires for the sport but I have never seen a relative of his that is even remotely ammy friendly. If you are a skilled rider/trainer than he is a good option. If not I would stay away.
    www.svhanoverians.com

    "Simple: Breeding,Training, Riding". Wolfram Wittig.



  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kyzteke View Post
    Well, of course I've thought of that, but in terms of dressage stallions, aren't those rankings based on the scores of the MPT?

    In jumping competition, where $$ is awarded, they are looking at mature get out there competeting.

    But in dressage? Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought the FN values were based on inspection scores. If not, how do they quantify dressage show scores?

    Also, do these include stallions standing in America? ARE there any world class dressage stallions standing in America?
    The FN ratings are only for stallions approved at sometime in Germany, using results only in Germany. Dressage rankings are not from inspections. They use a number of aspects: all starters in all competitions to compute a ranking among all starters; results in young horse competitions; mare performance tests; and stallion performance tests.

    Not the ultimate answer you may be looking for, since when you say "World Class", I think that means has more than once produced a horse that places regularly in the top 10 of an international dressage competition. However, it is not as weak as you implied being only the most basic of testing for performance. There are criticisms of the system and there are sometimes surprising horses high up on the list based on 1 or 2 very high placing young horses.

    The last time I bought the FN book was in 2005, but in looking at those on the top of the list that I would still consider top horses that haven't already been mentioned and are still alive:

    Don Frederico, Welt Hit I O, Wolkentanz I and II, Londonderry, Diamond Hit, Rotspon, Wie Weltmeyer. I was particularly impressed with the young GP horses by DF and Rotspon I watched in the webcam from Wiesbaden.

    If you look at the current FEI rankings, sires with semen available in the US and more than one offspring in the top 50 include are extremely limited: Jazz. I'm not a big Jazz fan, but those are the facts if you are looking at recent history of producing international horses. Wenzel is also an interesting oldie who I still think has frozen semen (once as sire and twices as damsire in FEI top 20). Other than that, most of the other sires either have no semen available (eg Donnerhall) or are only on the list once and are not ones that anyone would think of as top producers (eg, Prince Orac xx, Singular Joter, Sion, Silvio, August der Starke, Ex Libris xx, Arking xx), which shows how much difficult it is to increase the odds of breeding a top horse based on stallion-picking.



  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Donella View Post
    I know some won't agree but if you are breeding for yourself I would avoid Jazz. He is undoubtably one of the best sires for the sport but I have never seen a relative of his that is even remotely ammy friendly. If you are a skilled rider/trainer than he is a good option. If not I would stay away.
    One of these days you really need to come to my farm ... I promise we have no secret formula for raising all these hellions!

    But in any even that is really an extreme statement .. no relative of his? Really?



  16. #16
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    OK -- for those who wish to take the time, here is a link to a video of the mare:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-UdD_TFISwo

    If you FF more towards the end it has some footage of her at liberty with her Sempatico colt, who (I feel) has been her best foal so far.

    Although I love this mare to death, I would not class her as extraordinary, but she's what I've got . In general, I think she tends to throw better than herself and she is consistent in throwing sweet, easy-going temperments, straight legs, nice necks, good bone and good feet.

    In terms of gaits, her walk is very, very nice, trot good, canter better than average, but not extraordinary.

    At her Hanoverian inspection she scored a 6.8, but it was one of only two times in her life she was a TOTAL goober -- and I mean TOTAL!

    She refused to do her usual walk, kept squealing and bouncing around (did one really cool capriole which missed the inspector by only 5-6' or so), and then when we turned her loose she zoomed around like Secretariat on meth Jumped INTO the (closed) jumping chute and couldn't get out....I'm telling you, I was one embarrassed mom...

    Of course, it was all my fault - poor gal hadn't been off the farm in over a year and it turns out she was ovulating that day and she'd been stabled next to a breeding stallion all night.

    At any rate, at her best, I think she could have been on the lower range of EMC.

    As far as improvements: shorten the back, maybe lengthen the leg, pretty up the head, add more "engine". Keep the walk, give more energy and push to the trot (I think she has pretty good suspension), and more jump to the canter.

    Plans for the foal? That would depend on it's quality. Because of the "rep" of most of the stallions we are talking about, and the history of the rest of her foals, I think any thing I get would be marketable....but I can't dismiss totally the possibility of keeping the foal for myself, especially since I'd be selling the dam.

    Her breeding: she is by Rubino Bellisimo o/o a Batido mare, which makes her linebred to Bolero, but he's pretty far back on RB's side.

    I am especially interested in Rousseau, because he's actually pretty affordable and it's chilled semen, but I'd like to know what sort of mares fit him best.

    And I find it interesting to hear some people consider him "world class." Not saying he's NOT, but I'd like to hear why they think he IS.

    Otherwise I realize I'd probably be looking at frozen, but I only want to consider the stallions who have a really good record with frozen.

    Oh -- registry. Doesn't matter.



  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spectrum View Post
    Others that come to mind would be Hohenstein (and Caprimond), Argentinus, Sandro Hit..... I'm sure I can come up with more.

    Spectrum.
    Well, I love Hohenstein and LOVE Caprimond, but both have crappy semen. I don't want to just throw money down a rat hole.

    I've actually seriously considered SH, because he is SO marketable and his semen is very good, but I'm not sure she is the right mare for him.

    Not sure she's got the hind leg.



  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by DownYonder View Post
    Jazz, without a doubt.

    A few others to consider are Flemmingh, Don Schufro, De Niro, Ferro, Rohdiamant, maybe also Rousseau.
    Rohdiamant is also one of my all time favorites, but you are right about his semen.

    I have considered Don Schufro -- his frozen is well proven -- what sort of mare does he go well with?

    What about Ferro? LOVE this guy, but I don't know about his frozen. Any input on it's quality?

    Jazz....well, if anyone could sweeten that disposition, it's Ruby.

    What is his frozen like? Who carries it?



  19. #19
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    Don Schufro has crappy semen as well. Make sure you check on it.

    Hohenstein may be worth checking into actually. Rideauwood in Canada sells double doses for the price of one. That has resulted in a pregnancy. Judy Yancey also got a pregnancy as well. Don't know if she used a double dose or not.

    Check out my list of frozen semen distributors: http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...t=distributors

    A-1 has Jazz on sale for 1050.
    Last edited by back in the saddle; Jun. 28, 2010 at 07:46 PM.



  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by back in the saddle View Post
    Don Schufro has crappy semen as well. Make sure you check on it.

    Hohenstein may be worth checking into actually. Rideauwood in Canada sells double doses for the price of one. That has resulted in a pregnancy. Judy Yancey also got a pregnancy as well. Don't know if she used a double dose or not.

    Check out my list of frozen semen distributors: http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...t=distributors
    While Don Schufro semen is certainly not the most reliable frozen in the world, I'm not sure I would categorize it as "crappy" (not in the same category as Gribaldi or Donnerhall frozen, for instance). I know of more than a few foals conceived with DS frozen, and some were even on first insemination. I *would* be dead certain though that my mare was a perfect candidate for frozen and that I had a TOP NOTCH repro vet with lots of experience using frozen, although even then I would go in with the understanding that the DS semen can be hit or miss.

    And you are right about the Hohenstein frozen - my understanding is that several folks have now gotten pregnancies by using "double doses". I believe they have now convinced the owners to double the number of straws in each insemination dose.



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