February 20, 2006

Really enjoyed the Harness Edge podcast with Hanover’s Russell Williams who is indeed an eloquent spokesman for the stallion book limitation proposals although some of the points cited are indeed addressable.

There’s also a rather noticeable response on the USTA’s own website in which 59% of some 3,000 respondents favor the proposal while 41 % oppose. The split was 49% in favor and 51% opposed on the Harness Edge poll.

Those are hardly landslide approval numbers.

What would happen if genetic similarities like The Hall brothers, Conway, Angus and Andover or the Rich N Elegant boys (Rocknroll Hanover, Red River Hanover etc) emerge as DOMINANT stallions? Would that mean that the next brother candidate couldn’t stand due to potential genetic excess?

At this point the pacing breed seems to be the Western sons and grandsons, the Cam sons and grandsons, and the Abercrombie sons and grandsons All similar genetics extending from Hal Dale. This is likely to continue especially when power sources reach the third and fourth generation allowing for direct male linebreeding.

Since speed is the integral factor in the winning of races, those stallions able to produce speed will dominate. And they’ll receive the bulk of the traffic.

This not as much a breed of horse as it is a breed of athletes whose sole purpose is to compete and reproduce.

There was a reference to cheetahs. As many endangered species, cheetahs are the victims of diminished habitat and all the accordant problems therein. Therefore it seems predictable that those animals surviving in diminished habitats would be related.

It has long been proven that good mares can and do throw quality with lesser stallions but they will not enable a lesser stallion to produce better results with lesser quality mares.

In light of the immediate and compelling problems facing this industry namely increasing spectator apathy and owner desertion, it’s hard to view this proposal as any more than a back burner issue. That is assuming of course it would actually hold up if challenged in court-rather doubtful according to one very prominent attorney.

Looks like DuQuoin’s World Trotting Derby will soon fall by the wayside according to various online reports.

Always felt that THE horse able to win The Hambletonian, World Trotting Derby and Kentucky Futurity would have really accomplished something.

If nothing else it stamps the Futurity as THE multi heat classic for the 3-year-old trotting set from here on in..

Fascinating that the thus far undefeated YOURE NEXT (Yankee Paco-Buckinghim) is actually a 4x4 male linebred to NOBLE VICTORY via a combination of the two existing links that nobody could have predicted would endure and thrive.

The sire Yankee Paco is the Hambletonian winning son of the highly successful Balanced Image he by Noble Victory’s outstanding though marginally fertile son Noble Gesture.

The dam Buckinghim a three quarter sister to Eileen Donon, is a Garland Lobell who of course is by another well known Noble Victory son named Abc Freight who also accounted for Hambletonian winner Historic Freight.

Youre Next has won nine in succession at Pompano though he’s yet to face anything of substance.

Undoubtedly that will happen eventually.

Bob Marks



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