Posts Tagged ‘Harnessed magazine’

The Harnessed magazine for January is out now, so I have added the last article in the series I wrote for that publication.

The article is about the sires who were “new boys on the block” 10 years ago, standing their first season in New Zealand. What happened to them?

The results show it is just as hard to make your career as a sire as it is as a broodmare – maybe for different reasons, but a hard row to hoe none the less.

The new sires of the 2004/5 season (and their service fees) were:

Red River Hanover, I Am A Fool and McArdle (all standing for $6000), Totally Western ($2750), Cammibest ($2500), Julius Caesar ($2000), and Danny B ($475).

Read the article – and others in the series – here.

(I am taking a short break from writing for the magazine due to “day job” commitments. But I recommend the magazine for subscription here or overseas. It is a good read about racing, owning and breeding standardbreds in New Zealand, and additional information on Australian, North American and European racing from a “Kiwi” perspective. Subscription details here It is published by Harness Racing New Zealand)

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Over the past 6 months I have written a series of articles for Harnessed magazine, which I have now posted as part of the list under the Articles section of this blog. You can find the Articles section on the tabs across the top of my blog.

The articles track the breeding performance of fillies and mares who participated in some of the great races of 10 or 20 years ago, and the last one of the series (which I will post up when it has been published in Harnessed) does the same for the sires who first stood here 10 years ago.

Researching these articles was both inspiring and depressing. Depressing because there are so many descending lines from mares which either end poorly or never even start. There are mares who are hardly given a chance in terms of quality sires, and mares that are given many, many chances for little reward. There are mares who miss or slip repeatedly, and mares that breed almost entirely one sex or the other. There are many top race mares who leave nothing nearly as good as themselves.

But the research was also inspiring, because there are mares (often brought cheaply) who have excelled on the race track and in the breeding barn, and mares who have kick-started a fading maternal line and given it two or three strong branches for the future. There are breeders who have upgraded families, and breeders who have successfully taken chances rather than played it safe.

It all shows just how tricky it is for a maternal line to continue on successfully over a decade or more, and how challenging it is to be a good breeder.

When you read these articles, remember that the statistics for progeny were correct at the time of writing. Many of the mares’ progeny will have raced and hopefully won since I wrote the articles, new foals will have been born, and yearlings sold for big or small prices at the 2015 or future yearling sales.

You are welcome to update, correct or add to the articles in the “Leave a comment” area at the bottom of the Harnessed magazine articles page.

Finally I urge you to subscribe to Harnessed magazine as a top quality monthly publication about harness racing and standardbred breeding in New Zealand, and insights from further afield. It is the official publication of Harness Racing New Zealand. You can subscribe here

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Congratulations to Harness Racing New Zealand – they have split the Harness Racing Weekly into (1) a more user focused update and (2) a monthly glossy magazine with great production values along the lines of Hoofbeats.

In the monthly magazine called “Harnessed” there is a section that focuses on breeders’ issues and news, and that has more or less taken over from Breeding Matters (and again that will be a more user focused information newsletter).

I will have a regular article in the new magazine, which will start by looking back at some good races 10 and 20 years ago, and see what has happened to the breeding careers of the fillies and mares who featured in them.

The first issue of Harnessed magazine excited me because it presents harness racing in a very professional way, and with a range of articles that even the casual supporter would find “a good read”.

With over 100 pages, it is much more than a quick flick.

The subscription rates are available here but I would suggest like most magazines the online sub is the best option if you are not someone who wants the handle the very professional magazine itself.

Well done to all those involved, including HRNZ and the NZSBA for launching this industry flagship.


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