Posts Tagged ‘French sires’

That’s The Story is a bay colt by Monarchy out of the Sundon mare Bree, who just happens to be a half sister to outstanding racehorse Stig.

The colt is part of the Studholme Bloodstock (Brian West) draft at the PGG Wrightson Sale of the Stars -Premier yearling sales in Christchurch.

The cross of Monarchy over a Sundon mare is a well established one, but ironically it is not the match that Brian West had originally planned. The breeding of Bree has its origins in the long journey Brian made through France a couple of years ago, during which he attended one of the  French yearling sales. He was taken by the number of Sam Bourbon yearlings he saw there. Sam Bourbon was on an “introductory offer” at that time in New Zealand for a lot less than his European fee.

On his return home, Brian was on the lookout for Sundon mares to buy and put to French sires, and Bree was one of those mares. But by then Sam Bourbon semen was in short supply in New Zealand, and after two rounds to him without success Brian had to make a call. Thinking it may be a reaction to frozen semen, which some mares can have, Brian didn’t switch to another French sire but instead went for Monarchy who stands locally – and job done.

The match still follows Brian’s preference for outcrossing up to 4 or 5 generations if possible. The nearest double up I can spot that includes both the mare’s pedigree and the sire’s pedigree is Speedy Scot (5×5) and Super Bowl (5×5).

In this case, Bree helps the outcrossing factor by being of very unusual breeding herself.

And one with a strong French influence.

Her damsire is Gekoj, one of a tiny handful of French-bred sires available here in the early 1980s. He left just 118 live foals, and was not a huge commercial success but with the benefit of hindsight we can note some interesting and top class names among his offspring including one of my favourites David Moss (31 wins, almost half a million), Drott Moss and Look. There is a hint that maybe the timing wasn’t right (we too were into stamina trotters and needed the injection of speed that American trotting sires like Sundon eventually gave) but there was a quality of outcome that signalled potential in the outcross of European and downunder trotters.

Bree’s dam Nakaia went to Gekoj in 1985. The year before she had been mated with another of those rare French sires available here, Jet D’Emeraude to produce Nakura, the dam of Take A Moment, Now’s The Moment, Juverna etc.

The family of Lot 201 is an odd one, tending to produce one absolutely outstanding horses in each generation from a fairly large number of offspring. Bree’s dam Naraya, the dam of Stig, has produced to date 7 foals, 1 to race, 1 inner (i.e. Stig). Her own dam (Nakaia) has a similar record, i.e.  8 foals, 2 to race  and 2 winners.

But look at the family that is developing from some of the offspring of the two French bred mares out of Nakaia – it is all class including Take A Moment,  Dream A Moment, Doctor Hook, Quite A Moment etc.

Gekoj and Jet D’Emeraude became available here through Captain Odvaar Andersen.

According to the Addington Timeline website

“In the late 70’s and early 80’s he brought out four French stallions – Beau Nonantias (2:04.7), Gekoj (2:02.5), Iguassou (2:09.5) and Jet d’Emeraude (1:59.2) and the Norwegian horse Inter Du Pas (2:07.3). Gekoj was probably by far the best of them as a sire. He stood four seasons in Mid-Canterbury and left 83 live foals – 17 of them winners – before his death at the age of 19.”

Lot 201 yearling That's the story

Lot 201 That’s The Story, by Monarchy out of Bree.

You can contact me at bee.raglan@xtra.co.nz if you have any recollections of those French sires here and how they were received at the time.

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