Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Kentucky Derby Pedigree Analysis: Nowhere to Hide

Thanks to Avalyn Hunter's great book "American Classic Pedigrees," PedigreeQuery, TBHeritage, Les Brinsfield's articles, and other sources for my analyses.

If Nowhere to Hide indeed has nowhere to hide amongst the Derby candidates, his pedigree should prove him to be a legitimate contender for the roses. His sire, Vindication, was a two-year-old champion who never raced at three with a tragically shortened stud career, He was sired by Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew out of the graded stakes-winning Strawberry Road mare Strawberry Reason, dam of his graded-stakes winning three-quarter sibling Scipion. Strawberry Road was foaled from the Hail to Reason mare Pretty Reason, dam of graded stakes winner Silver Comet and granddam of Panamanian champion Seductora. Pretty Reason was from Mysore, a daughter of Amarullah, who ran well in several nice stakes as a two-year-old and sported a fantastic pedigree, being by Nasrullah out of Amphora, by Bull Lea. Amphora was from the Teddy mare Tedmelia, tail-female ancestress of the likes of grade I victor and sire Afternoon Deelite, Super Derby winner Soul of the Matter, champion steeplechaser Good Night Shirt, and Sanford Stakes winner Yorkville. Tedmelia’s dam was a full sister to top sire Sunbriar.
Going back to Vindication’s female line, Mysore was out of the Eight Thirty mare Teleran, dam of Jim Dandy winner Cornish Prince; Mysore was from the Pharis mare Tellaris, dam of Valley Forge Handicap winner Tellarian and ancestress of grade II winner Bug Eyed Betty and Venezuelan group II winner Holograma. Tellaris was from Donatella, ancestress of Derby winner Spend a Buck; Donatella was foaled from Adargatis, a French classic winner and top broodmare. Adargatis’ female-line descendants include her sons Arc winner Ardan and Jockey Club Stakes winner Pardal, as well as a group stakes winner. Adargatis’ dam, Helene de Troie, also foaled the remarkable broodmare La Troienne, one of the most important mares of the past century, whose descendants number among them champions Smarty Jones, Busher, Affectionately, and Allez France.
Nowhere to Hide has no blemishes on his female side, either. His dam, Stirring, is by Seeking the Gold out of Daijin, a Canadian stakes winner and dam of top Canadian stakes winner Handpainted and stakes victress Serenading, and granddam of a Japanese stakes winner. Daijin’s dam, Passing Mood, was by Buckpasser, and lived up to her regal heritage and descendants. She foaled Belmont Stakes winner Touch Gold, Canadian Triple Crown winner With Approval, as well as other stakes winners. Her sire was the incomparable Northern Dancer and she was out of Canadian classic winner Cool Mood, who was the second dam of Canadian champion Izvestia and the graded winner Key Spirit, fourth dam of Santa Anita Oaks winner Hedonist, Canadian Futurity winner Zaha, Santa Margarita Invitational winner Healthy Addiction, and grade II victor Seeking Daylight, . Her other descendants include Pegasus Handicap winner Pies Prospect, the hardy mare Southern Heat (veteran of 90 starts), and numerous other Canadian and American stakes winners. Cool Mood was foaled from the mare Happy Mood, by Epsom Derby conqueror Mahmoud. Winner of the Acorn Stakes, Happy Mood was the ancestress of multiple graded stakes victress Bending Strings, Kentucky Oaks hero Buryyourbelief, grade I winners Pretty Discreet and Discreet Cat, and others. The next dam, La Reigh, was by Count Gallahad, a uniquely-bred son of Sir Gallahad III out of a daughter of Belmont victor Luke McLuke. La Reigh was from Risque Reigh, by Count Fleet’s sire Reigh Count (also a Derby winner), and was out of the mare Risky, granddam of the good two-year-old Skylarking and top racemare Beaugay. Risky was the fifth dam of numerous stakes winners via her descendant Beau Jet, as well as major English distance winner Silver Patriarch and U.S. champion Key to the Mint.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Belated, I know....

Yeah, it's been a few weeks since Lawyer Ron won the Whitney, but I might as well comment...YIPPPEEE! This colt has gone under the radar for a while and really deserved a grade I win. Also, I love Langfuhr as a sire and think he gets quality horses that are often underrated. Good going!

R.I.P. Hennessy and Woodman.

Wow, it's really been a couple tough months for the Coolmore folks. First, their star stallion Woodman died, now the top-notch Hennessy, too. They've both been major sire presences: Woodman got the likes of Bosra Sham and Hawk Wing, while Hennessy got stars like Johannesburg. R.I.P. to both stallions and my condolences to the folks at Coolmore/Ashford.


Friday, July 27, 2007


I miss Invasor. No, I really mean it. It's not the same racing game without our favorite superhorse winning another grade I stakes. has a story up about that, without Inva, the Whitney is an open race. Yeah, it is, but it doesn't make me stop missing Invasor. Anyway, hopefully we'll have a lot of little Inva-sions running around soon: ooh, good idea! Match race against the little Bernardinis!

Really, really, really, really old sons of long-gone champion sires

I'm baaaack! Anyway, there's been a bit o' news recently about sons of old sires like Northern Dancer and Raise a Native that have been pensioned and/or have passed away. R.I.P. I had no idea that RaN still had sons at stud! Raise a Man, the 30-year-old son of Raise a Native, just passed away after standing in New York, while Lucky North, a son of Northern Dancer, was also just pensioned. I think it's great that, after their long stud careers, these studs are getting their long-due rest. Vacation, anyone?

Here's Raise a Man at the top.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Seattle Dancer died

Seattle Dancer, the record-priced $13.1 million yearling, recently died. A Nijinsky half-brother to Seattle Slew, he was a moderate success at stud and on the track. His record price has since been eclipsed by The Green Monkey's $16 million, but his legacy will stand. However, TGM still has to live up to remote success on the track and in the breeding shed.

Funny Cide retired

Funny Cide, the champion 3-year-old of 2003, just retired at the age of 7. He's been running lately in a lot of New York-bred stakes and has done well, but has not performed up to his 2003 standards. I hope his Sackatoga owners will give him a good home; then, he'll become an honored old vet like John Henry (although not as crabby).

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Poll Error

As stupid as I am, I just got even stupider. I just realized that the poll should ask about the best horses of 2006, NOT 2007.....pardon my blunder.

Notnowcato delivers a smasher in Coral-Eclipse

By all that has hooves! Ryan Moore outwitted Frankie Dettori to triumph over the Italian wonder and his favorite, the Epsom Derby winner Authorized. NNC has an interesting pedigree: on top, he traces to Ahonoora, but not through the usual branch of Indian Ridge. Instead, Ahonoora's son Inchinor appears on his top line: he is also the sire of Queen Elizabeth II Stakes winner Summoner. Inchinor's broodmare sire, Lomond, was a Northern Dancer half-brother to Seattle Slew.

NNC's female line traces to a distinguished English family whose representatives include top French winner Vela, group winner Home Please, excellent steeplechaser Beef or Salmon, good stayer Phantom Breeze, etc. The line further traces to other mares, all of whom are distinguished.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Awesome Again and Again and Again....

This horse just keeps going and going and going...he's like the Energizer Bunny of top stallions. His progeny just win race after race! Recently, he got grade II winner Ginger Punch.

The Thoroughbred Times Stallion Directory online lists some of his top winners: they include Round Pond, Toccet, Wilko, Ghostzapper....the list goes on and on. It's really quite remarkable the quality of the produce that he manages to eke out! He's got a lovely pedigree, too, being by Deputy Minister out of a Blushing Groom mare. His stud fee is now $125,000: honestly, compared to other stallions' fees, he gets a good horse for that money.

Deep Impact is going to have a deep impact with so many foals

Sweet Matchem! reports that this Japanese superstar is thought to be a successor to Sunday Silence, so he's being bred to....wait for it....230 MARES! That's crazy! I just hope they hit the ground running: Sunday Silence was a hugely underrated sire and one of the greatest successes of recent years. He revolutionized the Japanese breeding industry and was an American superstar, as well. I just wish that America could get some of his stock going, as they could definitely use an outcross to all the Northern Dancer and Mr. Prospector lines over there. Hail to Reason is a very good, consistent sire line that produces quality horses: just look at Sunday's sire, Halo. He not only sired Sunday Silence, but 1983 Kentucky Derby winner Sunny's Halo. He has numerous sons at stud and I bet his line will continue for quite some time.

Here's Deep Impact up at the top. Handsome lad, no? ;)

Broodmares Galore!

Here's an update on what your favorite mares from the past few years, who've since been retired, are up to in the paddocks:

Ashado: The champ produced her first foal, a Storm Cat colt, this year. ----> Ashado

Madcap Escapade: The grade I winner foaled a Pulpit filly earlier this year.

Megahertz: This turf specialist foaled a Giant's Causeway colt earlier this year.

Azeri: Hot Broodmare Mama

'Zeri is one of the latest, hardiest mares we've had in a loooong time. I miss her on the track: she was a throwback to the hardy mares of yore, like Gallorette. Anyway, she's happily out to pasture, foaling babies. Her latest is by A.P. Indy. Hmmm....gotta like that cross. I can't wait until that foal gets to the track....I bet he/she will be a late maturing, classy lil' thing.

Scat Daddy retired!

Another one! Here's the story:

Apparently, he's retired because, with his injury, he'd be out for 90 days, and that wouldn't allow him to be ready for competition at the end of the year! I don't understand why they couldn't just let him rest for the rest of the year and have him ready for next year: it doesn't make any sense. Simply because he won't be able to compete for a while, they automatically retire him to stud! He will be going to Ashford, alongside his sire, Johannesburg, and grandsire, Hennessy.


Not again! ANOTHER top horse is being retired. Invasor is being retired to Shadwell Stud after an injury. While I always want what is best for the horse, and his trainer, owner, and handlers know the horse and the proper care for him more than I ever could, I still really wish he had stayed in competition. He was a fantastic racehorse and it's a shame to see him retire. I do think that he will make a good and popular stallion: I hope we get a lot of little Invasors running around here soon.

Skip Away

I decided to take a look at Skippy's pedigree.

His sire, Skip Trial, is from Looks Promising, also the ancestress of numerous graded winners, including grade I winner Tactical Cat. The next dam, Fluoresee, was from the broodmare Snow Flame, a daughter of the foundation mare Firetop. Firetop's descendants include Nijinsky II, the Minstrel, champion Doubledogdare, classic winner Lahan, etc.

Skippy's dam, Ingot Way, was from the mare Ingot, dam of grade III winner Ingot Ruler. Ingot's granddam, Queen Fleet, ancestress of graded stakes winner Crafty Friend. Queen Fleet was from the mare Boat, dam of major stakes winner Greek Ship. Boat was also the ancestress of two Queen's Plates winners and grade I winner Without Feathers. Her dam, Croatala, foaled horses from whom descend top stakes winner and sire Heliopolis and Alabama S. winner Up the Apalachee.

Robellino, Rainbow Quest dead

A huge blow to the Thoroughbred industry: noted European stallions Robellino and Rainbow Quest died. Read more here:

While both were getting on in age, they still had huge effects on the breeding industry as a whole. RQ was a top SW in Europe and one of Blushing Groom's best sons. He revitalized the Nasrullah sire line and created an outcross to Northern Dancer and Mr. Prospector sire lines. He has become an especially prominent broodmare sire of late....R.I.P.


Robellino was a top son of Epsom Derby winner Roberto (of the Hail to Reason line); his progeny included 2000 Guineas winner Mister Baileys. R.I.P. also.
View a photo of the gorgeous Rainbow Quest

Sunday, July 8, 2007


Hey, everyone. I'm the Pedigree Pundit and this is an analysis of Thoroughbred pedigrees.