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Pollard's COTH article: breed to top eventing mares, would you buy a foal from one?

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  • #41
    Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
    Just pondering what the facts were in EC's case. If this was a home-bred, perhaps the buyer didn't "trust" a breeder for an honest evaluation of the horse. Barn blind owner and all. Some people just don't like dealing directly with a breeder.

    If said horse were sent to a sale barn, or better yet a trainer on consignment, buyer might feel that some weeding had already taken place and that a third party might (but very likely wouldn't) be more objective about said horse. Especially if it is a barn with a very good reputation and its sold horses have gone on to careers. A huge amount is going to depend on the expertise of the buyer. (Of course, trainer commissions and finders fees might also enter into the equation if buyer is using a trainer/expert in the horse search. )
    EC is a well known and respected breeder and vet who has evented her horses to the Intermediate level.

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    • #42
      Originally posted by Eventingjunkie View Post
      EC is a well known and respected breeder and vet who has evented her horses to the Intermediate level.
      Hmmmm Old instructor/BO's daughter rode competitively at Advanced, 1984ish to 1988 on a homebred that she started and she also started all of the homebreds. So maybe the average Smurf can't trust those eh-vul ULR's?????
      "Never do anything that you have to explain twice to the paramedics."
      Courtesy my cousin Tim

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      • #43
        Originally posted by fooler View Post
        Hmmmm Old instructor/BO's daughter rode competitively at Advanced, 1984ish to 1988 on a homebred that she started and she also started all of the homebreds. So maybe the average Smurf can't trust those eh-vul ULR's?????
        They do say that familiarity breeds contempt.

        Sometimes buyers can't trust breeders.
        "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
        Thread killer Extraordinaire

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        • #44
          Originally posted by vineyridge View Post
          They do say that familiarity breeds contempt.

          Sometimes buyers can't trust breeders.
          They also say "no good deed goes unpunished."

          I know they helped many purchase a horse, some homebreds and some not. Also they steered some non-TB riders away from the TB homebreds. No, they weren't perfect, but Mr BO, who had worked for a major international company before starting the farm, tried to be the objective one. He was the one taking the long term view of any sale. In other words is it a good match that will promote positive, or at least neutral, commentary in our rather small horse world. If not, the sale was not done.
          "Never do anything that you have to explain twice to the paramedics."
          Courtesy my cousin Tim

          Comment


          • #45
            Breeding the UL mares might be worthwhile, but eventers are known to be the most frugal buyers among the sport disciplines. So even if you have well bred mares that have produced at the lower levels -- many times because the owner just didn't aspire to go very far up the levels -- it's not particularly profitable. I have 2 idle broodmares that have both produced youngsters that have evented successfully at lower levels -- also their first year out -- but I would probably hesitate to breed them just for that market since the return isn't so great. I think it would be interesting to see good mares with the pedigree, conformation and temperment that produce youngsters that jump in good form and move well and are ammie-appropriate being bred for that market if it were more profitable.
            PennyG

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            • #46
              Missed this thread earlier and should have replied earlier.

              There is no doubt that some horses are freaks and do not breed true, but with good families this is different. Whether in racing or with sport horses there is a much higher probability of breeding good horses from good families, and when a pedigree is packed with successful performers the odds of breeding a special horse will be even higher. Therefore identifying good families and breeding from them is without doubt desirable.

              Cruising has been hugely successful as a sire because he has bred true and it was rare to find one of his offspring that did not jump. His sire, the Irish Draught Sea Crest (the sire of Lenamore) jumped internationally. I watched him from a young horse and he was a phenomenal horse, clean and courageous with fantastic technique. While Cruising's dam was the international show jumping mare Mullacrew, whose breeding is classic Irish performance blood.

              My foundation mare High Dolly was not a freak. Her breeding, with Chair Lift (High Hat, Hyperion) and Prefairy (Precipitation, Hurry On) is long established as superior sport horse and racing genetics. In addition her dam was originally bought as a jumper by the late great show jumper Paul Darragh. As well as producing High Dolly she also produced a Grand Prix jumper by King of Diamonds but unfortunately she died before being able to extend her line. High Dolly never bred a bad one, as not only did she produce Mandiba and High Kingdom, but also an international gelding by the Sea Crest called Boa, who was 16.3 and magnificent but hurt his back, and two very special geldings by the Irish Draught Grange Bouncer that my wife and son ride as their main horses. I was actually trying to breed a brood mare but these horses are 'treasures' in our lives that I would not part with easily.

              This success has extended to the next generation because I have also been breeding from a full sister and three quarter sister of Mandiba and High Kingdom. All their offspring are very talented, including two I am keeping for my second son and my daughter, and will soon be hitting the competition circuit. I also have a full brother of Mandiba and High Kingdom, the stallion JACKAROO, whose first offspring are out of the same mould. He will be available to USA breeders for the first time this year.

              So yes it is very important and worthwhile to cherish high performing breeding stock from good families .... and an extra thought, what makes so many of these horses exceptional is their brain. We undervalue good brains and this is an area we all have to work at in the industry. High Dolly's combination of great gentleness (rideability) and great courage was the golden ingredient.
              www.WilliamMicklem.com

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              • #47
                Originally posted by William Ireland View Post
                So yes it is very important and worthwhile to cherish high performing breeding stock from good families .... and an extra thought, what makes so many of these horses exceptional is their brain. We undervalue good brains and this is an area we all have to work at in the industry. High Dolly's combination of great gentleness (rideability) and great courage was the golden ingredient.
                The brain is one of the most important thing in my book...coupled with ridability. I've just known one too many INCREDIBLE athletes who had a screw loose which made them unpredictable and therefore less competitive. Doesn't matter if they can jump 7 feet if you can't get them to the fence. Plus a good brain increases marketability. Even pro riders LIKE to ride nice horses. This doesn't always mean a horse has to be a super easy ride (and my prefered horse is more naturally forward than what many in the US ammy market want).....but they do need to have a good mind and good instincts and generally want to work with you not against you. Some of this is how they are handled (and you can easily ruin a good horse)...but a whole lot of it is born into them.
                ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

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                • #48
                  William, when I said that High Dolly and Welton's Gazelle were "freaks", I simply meant (in a good way) that they were the sport horse equivalents of Lavendula and Missy Baba whose produce were outstanding regardless of sex and whose daughters also produced exceptional individuals. Broodmares of that consistent quality, no matter how well bred, are freakish rare and are to be cherished and their families kept going.
                  "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                  Thread killer Extraordinaire

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                  • #49
                    Walk the talk

                    I was very disappointed in the issue. I thought this article kind of smelled like a vanity publication...you buy a full page ad and you get to fly the plane...the other major article was the same, I hope this is not the trend for COTH, maybe it happened the other way around...we should buy a page because we will have an article. Either way I think it is a relatively new interest for the author because NOW he has stallion breedings to sell...so lets reorganize the whole eventing breeding world in the US. I think most of us who have been considering the eventing world when making breeding decisions don't need this kind of help. What we do need from somone like him is...what does it take to catch the eye of UL riders...where does a young horse need to be on the training scale...what do the horses need to show a rider...what will you do to support the people who DO take mares to your stallions. He has been heading to Europe for his upper level horses just like the other BNTs. What will it take to keep him here? Why not show HIS stallions...they do it in Europe...why have the MARES have a eventing record when you aren't getting an eventing record for your stallions. If I HAD an upper level mare I would want a proven stallion.

                    As a breeder we have to keep the amount of money into our market horses as small as we can...what should we concentrate on to present a prospect to ULRs. I have a likely candidate right now. He is doing the basics in dressage RTLTWHOAGOWTC, work ethic. He is showing the gaits...now we show him the jumps. Hunter jumper people want us to do as little as possible before they see the prospects...what to eventers want done after the basics. Do I need to send him to an ULR to get the basics...would that be worth it...can an UL rider bring me money in a sale...how does an ULR make breeding prospects for them worth the investment for us...happy to so it but the problem is less about UL mares and more about who buys the foals...how do we develop the young stock...how do we get the youngstock to the buyers. You watch this forum long enough you will get a great idea of how to pickup and vet and start a OTTB. What do we do to hook up with UL riders to make breeding to stallions worth the investment? Instead of making a new registry show what we can do with young event horse candidates...did he support the young horses event program and if not then what should it be like so that he as an UL rider and now a stallion owner WOULD support it. PatO

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by columbus View Post
                      Either way I think it is a relatively new interest for the author because NOW he has stallion breedings to sell...
                      This is not the case -- and I can speak to that directly and first-hand.

                      The Pollards have been interested in and active in breeding for a number of years. They've owned one of their stallions (he's in Europe) for 4-5 years now, and even before that, they were very interested in bloodlines, breeding, and producing top event horses in the US.

                      The Pollards do not always buy from overseas. Icarus was an OTTB. Wonderful Will is an OTTB. They also rode and trained one of my California-born homebreds.

                      I heartily applaud Michael for sticking his neck out and stirring up conversation with his articles on breeding event horses. The range of responses has certainly been interesting, although I think it's a bit much to ascribe ulterior motives to him or the Chronicle. This is not his first piece for COTH that talks about the importance of breeding.

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        I just would not have expected such rude and incorrect comments about ottbs from a serious event rider. I would expect them from someone trying to sell stallion breedings. I agree with Columbus.

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          Originally posted by Renascence View Post
                          I just would not have expected such rude and incorrect comments about ottbs from a serious event rider. I would expect them from someone trying to sell stallion breedings. I agree with Columbus.
                          Lets put this in historical perspective.
                          Start with a couple of axioms:
                          1. The only two types of horses that have proved themselves as UL eventers are a: full TBs, and b) high percentage TB crosses. Even if one looks at Cavalier Royale and his success with the Irish mare population, he was, though registered Holsteiner, 50% TB.
                          2). If one is going to upgrade a domestic mare base, one looks to stallions because they can do more good in less time.

                          At this point in time, the domestic mare base in North America for the English disciplines is primarily TB. Which is good in a lot of ways, but also unproved as a consistent source of event horses.

                          Some warmblood breeders have taken the position that a TB mare for sport is basically trash, but WBs (except for SFs) don't have and have never had, the vast number of TB mares available in the big racing countries. So they have developed their dogmas from lack of experience. They started with light, all purpose farm horses and used TB stallions to improve them. In many ways, the Irish experience was the same. Your ordinary Irish farmer was not going to have access to TB mares. But the government made TB stallions available for breeding to those mares at a very cheap cost. The purpose, back in cavalry times, was to produce good cavalry horses. Same was true in Germany. The US Cavalry Remount service did the same thing. The Brits did the same thing with their Hunter Improvement Society.

                          Here and now we have oodles of TB mares; to improve their sport capability at reasonable stud fees, the idea of crossing with WB stallions should work in the same way genetically as crossing a TB stallion with a WB mare. For eventing, it would seem that one would want a WB stallion with (proven by sport descendants) TB ancestry close up.

                          This is not to say that I don't believe for one minute that pure TBs can't be bred for sport, but there are rather daunting problems with that. First is the common type of racing stallions available to the masses. Second are the much higher stud fees common in the racing industry. Third is that we have great difficulty determining which TB stallions that are affordable have actually produced sport horses at the Upper levels. The last two issues simply don't exist with WBs.

                          It might be that there is something about TB mares that makes them unsuitable to produce consistent sport horses. But we'll never know that without trying.

                          But given axiom two--that the fastest way to "improve" a population is to use proven stallions on it--using non TB stallions on TB mares (given our mare population)--, importing good WB stallions and breeding them to native TB mares may well be the quickest way to achieve consistent success in North America.

                          But it may not, since all breeding is a gamble, and so many other factors impact success.
                          "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                          Thread killer Extraordinaire

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                          • #53
                            What exactly was said about OTTBs that was rude or incorrect? Is it not true that modern racing emphasizes early maturing short distance runners and stayers are now bred in smaller numbers? Is it realistic to expect UL pros to depend on combing through the ranks of spindle-legged sprinters to fill future team spots?

                            Really. I'm curious. When did the truth become 'rude'? Did you miss Dr Ben Carson holding forth on how political correctness is ruining the country? I love TBs, both my current horses are TBs, but I'm not going to pretend the TB is what it was 40 years ago (or still is, overseas, more often) so OTTB owners can feel warm and fuzzy.

                            Jennifer
                            Third Charm Event Team

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              Agree with Viney and Third Charm. I didn't see MP putting down OTTBs, as much as saying that good ones are rare, and we'd have a more consistent source of good horses in this country if we tried to breed for it. And we should use our OTTB mare base, crossed with sport horse (WBx) stallions. BUT we need to refine that mare base more, and figure out which lines (close up, not just 5gen back) are most useful for event horses. I think most on this forum have learned the benefit of Fappiano...but we should pinpoint other sires who would be good for eventers, too (especially broodmare sires).

                              There ARE some very nice, athletic racehorses being produced who could make good event horses-- I'd guess that many graded stakes performers might cover ground and jump well-- but as Viney mentioned, most of these (and their bloodlines) are out of reach for sport purposes. The "state breds" and lesser-known bloodlines are what most eventers are left to sort through, and that's a lot more culling to do. If eventers had access to a pool of stakes horses to pick from...I think we could manage to produce some more upper level talent. Not that an ideal racehorse is necessarily an ideal event horse; just that the raw athleticism is there.
                              “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
                              ? Albert Einstein

                              ~AJ~

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                Originally posted by ThirdCharm View Post
                                What exactly was said about OTTBs that was rude or incorrect? Is it not true that modern racing emphasizes early maturing short distance runners and stayers are now bred in smaller numbers? Is it realistic to expect UL pros to depend on combing through the ranks of spindle-legged sprinters to fill future team spots?

                                Really. I'm curious. When did the truth become 'rude'? Did you miss Dr Ben Carson holding forth on how political correctness is ruining the country? I love TBs, both my current horses are TBs, but I'm not going to pretend the TB is what it was 40 years ago (or still is, overseas, more often) so OTTB owners can feel warm and fuzzy.

                                Jennifer
                                I disagree with you about the quality of ottbs here, so I guess we will just have to agree to disagree on that. I do agree that if one is breeding for sport with an ottb mare, it is wise to breed to a sport stallion.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  I appreciate Denny Emerson refuting "spindle legged ottbs" and posting a picture of Comet Rose on FB yesterday. I wish him and the Pollards success with Chatsworth Stud and breeding and respect all that they do for eventing.

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    Kind of OT, but there is a TB stallion standing in Louisiana who is German and raced until he was 8 or 9. Very nice pedigree for sport. Not too expensive either.
                                    Proudinsky:
                                    http://www.pedigreequery.com/proudinsky
                                    http://www.bloodhorse.com/stallion-r...proudinsky-ger
                                    "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                                    Thread killer Extraordinaire

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      "exceptions prove the rule". Fortunately Comet Rose was hunted down by Sporthorse breeders due to her relationship to Courageous Comet! Since her pedigree is not current or fashionable for the NA racing scene!

                                      Tells you something about modern trends when everyone is hot about a horse whose parents are 20-30 years old.

                                      Jennifer
                                      Third Charm Event Team

                                      Comment


                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by ThirdCharm View Post
                                        "exceptions prove the rule". Fortunately Comet Rose was hunted down by Sporthorse breeders due to her relationship to Courageous Comet! Since her pedigree is not current or fashionable for the NA racing scene!

                                        Tells you something about modern trends when everyone is hot about a horse whose parents are 20-30 years old.

                                        Jennifer
                                        This only tells me the parents aged out to 20yo before one of their offspring was developed to advanced, thus making people aware of the line. This is normal.

                                        Even a well promoted sport stallion, such as Denny's Aberjack was pretty much just as old and retired by the time an offspring of his did as well.

                                        I believe Comet's rider is now winning at advanced with a new ottb from different lines.

                                        I have noticed a "modern trend" of tb bashing, but I am surprised it has filtered into eventing.

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          I think there is a definite benefit to buying a purpose bred horse, I have one due in June. And we SHOULD purpose breed for our pipeline, event horses shouldn't be an accident or surprise. That being said, I love OTTBs and IMO this will always be their sport... but only the good ones. I wonder how many other OTTBs UL riders went through (those who have a successful OTTB) before they found the one? How much $$$ and time went into those?

                                          It is a delicate balance but I at least hope Eventers can appreciate the purpose bred horse and the value they present, TB, WB, and otherwise. And as we continue to move into a direction where is it a level playing field for WB and TB (what it seems to be becoming), how crucial it is for riders with high aspirations to again build that pipeline with horses bred specifically for eventing and the special TBs who are crucial to the sport and thus the gene pool.

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