Posts Tagged ‘Rochelle Hanover’

Romola Hal, like Golden Miss, Spinster, Arpege, and other great foundation mares of the modern era, act like a massive waterfall at a point when a river needs extra energy to carry its quality and volume further downstream. These mares and the sires they clicked with create the deep pool at the base of the waterfall, from which a freshly renewed river and many tributaries flow.

Romola Hal

Romola Hanover with John Simpson snr at Du Quoin in the late 1950s

In most modern pedigrees, Romola Hal will sit 6 to 9 generations removed, but her legacy is so strong that many branches of her line are able to kick up not just good performers but outstanding performers at regular intervals. Some branches do this more often, and at different times. Some have eventually become streams that dry up for long periods of time, as you see the sire choice become more affordable but less able to contribute new energy.

The Romola Hanover branch has been the strongest in recent years, particularly through the outstanding Rodine Hanover. But there is a wealth of other Romola Hal influences worth tracking in maternal lines, and this blog looks at her lesser known daughters.

Apart from Romola Hanover (1957), Romola Hal had 4 daughters of significance – all by Tar Heel. Ritzy Hanover (1959), Romantic Hanover (1960), Rochelle Hanover (1961), and Rotate (1962).

Ritzy Hanover

Ritzy Hanover

Newspaper article about Ritzy Hanover seeking her 8th win

Ritzy Hanover (photo here, originally in Harness Horse) was the only one to really shine on the track as a 2 and 3yo. Here’s a newspaper article about her chasing her 8th win in the Lady Maud (The Evening News, 7 May 1962) and she ended up retiring with a very tidy $127,550 in stakes. Ritzy Hanover had 14 foals for 10 winners (2 in 1.57). Her descendant line is extensive but her sons appear to have been more stamina types than speed horses and they accumulated wins over time (the best being Albatross colt Rhulen Hanover who got 16 wins, $227,802 and a 1.56.2 mark). Her daughters included Ricki Hanover (by Best Of All) who was a good broodmare and dam of Rampage Hanover (by Albatross, $367,531). A daughter of Ricki Hanover, Ripreza Hanover, is the dam of the very good mare Feeling You (by Cambest, $1,028,496) and the good mare Biggest Big Bertha (by Little Steven, $284,794). Yet another daughter of Ricki Hanover is Rapunzel Hanover who was also a consistent broodmare without yet producing a standout.

Ritzy Hanover had another branch worth noting – from her daughter Rio Rita Hanover. She did nothing on the track but has produced her own successful branch through her daughter Rilda Hanover (by Best Of All). That success traces through Rilda Hanover’s Meadow Skipper daughter Rashina, whose line has turned up some very good performers including the classy 1986 mare Windy Answer (by Storm Damage, $531,645)  – you can trace her line down on Classic Families here.

But to date Feeling You is the standout from the Ritzy Hanover branch of the Romola Hal line, and it will be interesting to see how she does as a broodmare herself. 

I spotted a female descendant of Rilda Hanover called Ciggs CA who was imported to Australia around 2007 and bred from by Cold Mountain Stud for two Camelot Hall  foals, but little result in terms of racing sucess. The filly foal, named Cammys Reign,  has since been bred by a MR Cuthbert in NSW for a 2014 colt by Always A Virgin, yet to be registered.  I can find no sign of any other descendants from Ritzy Hanover in the Australian and New Zealand harness racing databases. But let me know if I’ve missed one!

Romantic Hanover

Five daughters show up in the Classic Families page for Romantic Hanover – there may have been others but these are the only ones that have performed or left performers at the “classic” level – two by Overtrick (Rachel Lobell and Rebecca Lobell), two by Adios Vic (Roberta Lobell and Truck Stop Rosie), and one by Most Happy Fella (Romaine Dancer).

If you are judging the line on performance, Classic Families is a great way to get a snapshot of what branches are throwing a very good performer to two in each generation.

The longest continuing branches of quality from Romantic Hanover are Rachel Lobell (specifically through her Adios Butler daughter Romantic Butler), and, even more so, Romaine Dancer.

There is also a branch descending from Truck Stop Rosie who had a well-performed daughter Colour And Light (by Nero, $303,637). Colour And Light’s daughter Cheryl Hanover (by Big Towner, $243,943) is continuing that form with modern sires – she had a good Western Terror son Lord Terror (1:51.2US $363,095) and an Art Major grandson Whiskey Pete (1:48.4US $410,866) both born in 2007, and an Artsplace daughter Cheryl’s Place produced the tough raceway multiple winning mare Gabrielles Girl.

She Has Passion's yearling colt 2016

She Has Passion yearling colt sold for $20,000 in 2016. Photo: Jodie Hallows

A half sister to Cheryl Hanover called Purple Passion did okay as a 3yo and her one and only foal, a daughter called She Has Passion (by Laag, 16 wins, $38,347) was imported to Australia. A grey colt yearling by Betterthancheddar from She Has Passion was sold by KTC Bloodstock at the Perth yearling sales in February 2016 for $20,000. A Sportswriter 3yo gelding called Backpage Screamer from the mare has had 1 win and 3 places to date – current breeders are listed as K T Charles, K J F Charles, A G Charles, WA, i.e. KTC Bloodstock. Interestingly the Australian Harness online pedigree page for this family doesn’t take the maternal line further back than Truck Stop Rosie, so the connection to Romola Hal is not obvious, but it is Romola Hal>Romantic Hanover>Truck Stop Rosie>Colour And Light>Purple Passion>She Has Passion.

Romaine Dancer’s daughters have not been consistent, but there are high earners and classy horses scattered through daughters, grand-daughters and great-grand-daughters. The “Keystone” moniker is prominent, and to be honest I am not sure how that started, presumably with horse racing and breeding around the Keystone township, which once thrived as a racing centre, but there may well be a more modern story. Let me mention a few names from Romaine Dancer’s branch – her son, the 1985 colt Keystone Raider (by Big Towner,  1:51.1US $946,914) who went on to have a great siring career based in Michigan, including two millionaire sons. The following tribute was posted by USTA in October 2005:

Keystone Raider

Keystone Raider

Keystone Raider, 20, died earlier this month of complications from injuries suffered in an August paddock fall.The son of Big Towner raced for five seasons, amassing earnings of $946,914, and taking a 1:51.1 mark as a 4-year-old. He retired to a stallion career that made him one of Michigan’s greatest sires. His 774 starts earned in excess of $34.7 million, led by millionaire Rair Earth p,1:49.3s, and fellow sub-1:50 pacers Midnight Jewel p,1:49.1 ($666,723) and Fearless Raider p,1:49 ($663,120). In all, he sired 101 $100,000 winners, six in sub-1:50 and 135 in 1:55 or better.

There is also Keystone Rodeo (by Western Hanover, 1:51.0US $725,180) from her daughter Keystone Romance, and some very good performers from the line of another daughter called Leap Year Romance (by Keystone Ore).  She has two top performing sons: Keystone Luther (by Abatross, 1:52.1US $614,717) and Keystone Romeo (also by Albatross, 1:51.2US $704,412), as well as a grandson called Next Flight (by Shotgun Scott, 1:50.0US $895,406).  But there appears to be no current top performers from this line – yet. 

I want to come back now to the Rachel Lobell/Romantic Butler branch of Romantic Hanover’s family, as this is where we have many New Zealand connections and several that have spilled over to Australia.

It all comes down to a daughter of Romantic Butler mare called Romantic by No Nukes. As I mentioned earlier, Classic Families includes two separate filly foals from Romantic Butler – Romantic (b1988) and Romantic II (b1987). But these are one and the same mare, and I understand that the “II” was added when she was imported and registered in New Zealand as there was already another horse called Romantic here.

Romantic II was brought from America to New Zealand by Sir Roy McKenzie with Roymark at foot and in foal to Precious Bunny. She went on to breed another 11 foals here. Roymark (by Tyler’s Mark, $122,461) and Precious Romance (by Precious Bunny, $62,013) were the best performers by far, and the sprawling family has left less of a footprint here than might have been expected. Only two of her several fillies have done anything in the breeding barn – Rachel Romance and Dreamy Romance.

Rachel Romance (by Camtastic, unraced) is the dam of the tough Courage Under Fire campaigner Beyond The Silence (9 wins, Lt $116,846 to date). Two daughters of Rachel Romance went to Australia and now have foals – Sly Romance and Xplosive Romance. Sly Romance is a Sands A Flyin mare bred by Burbeck Harness Bl’Stk Ltd., and of course that sire traces back to Romola Hal in his pedigree via her daughter Rochelle Hanover (see below). Sly Romance has just one foal to date, a 4yo filly bred by N Van Der Snoek in Western Australia that raced once as a 2yo and not sighted since. Xplosive Romance also has just one filly born in 2009 after missing twice, but that foal never made it to the races. Another daughter of Rachel Romance is the Christian Cullen mare Romanticully, who has a 3yo Art Official colt and a 2yo Art Major colt bred by Malcolm Shinn (both linking back to Romola Hal via Art Major’s maternal line), and a yearling Big Jim colt bred by Lynda Hebberd who now owns the mare. She’s back in foal to Betterthancheddar which will bring a 3×3 to Camtastic. I’d love to find out more about these.

The only other filly from Romantic II that has kicked on in the breeding barn is Dreamy Romance. She was an unraced mare taken in by

Dreamy Romance and her Big Jim filly foal at Macca Lodge

Dreamy Romance and her Big Jim filly foal at Macca Lodge

Bill Keeler when Sir Roy McKenzie had a dispersal sale. After breeding 5 foals, Bill Keeler put the mare back in a mixed and broodmare sale, and that’s when I bought her. She’s left big types so far but as they strengthen (with trainer Kirsten Barclay) they are producing some nice wins Rainbow Romance (by Knight Rainbow (4 wins, $24,882, now sold to North America), and My Rona Gold (by Klondike Kid, 2 wins, Lt $10,665 to date), and a 3yo filly by American Ideal which Kirsten likes but is not hurrying. I’ve bred a lovely looking Big Jim filly, and the mare is back in foal to Mr Feelgood. Read more about Dreamy Romance in the blog I wrote back in October 2014 and I will say a bit more about the Mr Feelgood decision in a later part of this series, when I cover some of the current breeders.

Rochelle Hanover

At first glance on Classic Families, Rochelle Hanover’s line appears ordinary. Her daughters didn’t stand out as racers and the best of her foals was the Albatross colt Rockwell Hanover ($197,520). But as you click through the descendants there are some top class horses poking up every generation or so, and the strongest and widest branch descends from her Torpid daughter Ribbon Hanover, and her daughter Richelle Hanover.

It is way too extensive to cover in text here, when you can unfold it on Classic Families as the tree.

Richelle Hanover was by Dancer Hanover, a son of The Old Maid and Adios – what a potent mix. Her daughter Misty Raquel (by Meadow Skipper) won $484,463 and was a top class, tough type adding the Jugette as a 3yo and the Lady Maud to her credentials of eventually 48 wins.

One of Misty Raquel’s 14 foals was Misty Bretta. In New Zealand we know her best as the dam of Sands A Flyin ($481,436) who was a significant sire in New Zealand for many years, but she also produced David’s Day ($383,092), Ringaleevio ($265,567), and Beach Bretta ($251,960). 

Of particular interest are Misty Bretta’s two daughters Celerity (by No Nukes) and Myriad (by Niatross) – they are half sisters to Sands A Flyin, and both have had descendants downunder. An Artsplace daughter of Celerity, Lil Sweet Art, was imported to New Zealand and bred from by the late Dave Carvill and bred from with B T Mackie and M W Hamilton. Her first foal was a Falcon Seelster filly called All My Art who achieved 2 wins and 6 places from 23 starts. She’s gone on to be a great if difficult producer with several of her foals ending up racing

Ohoka Nevada winning Barastoc Cup

8yo Ohoka Nevada winning Barastoc Cup in 2011

with success in Australia – Ohoka Du Nord (by Bella’s Boy, 1:52.7 $200,760) and Ohoka Nevada (by Sands A Flyin, 1:51.0 $505,757) were her first two foals, and her third was Ohoka Squire (by Christian Cullen) who is still racing around Pinjarra and Gloucester Park this season with 30 wins and 34 places and $140,550 to date. Her fourth foal was Millwood Liberty, again racing in Australia with a lot of success (1:51.7, $199,459, 18 wins to date).

While there have been others bred from daughters of Lil Sweet Art, it is only the All My Art line that has fired to date. All My Art is now being bred by Katie Carville and B T Mackie, and after not getting in foal to American Ideal twice, now has a Christian Cullen filly at foot and was served this season by Art Major.

If you view the Romola Hal family in its deepest context, as a branch of the Miss Duvall (U7) family, you can see some possible “Romola Hal” or “Miss Duvall” angles on some past and present sire choices, but equally ones that are not. I hope Katie Carville might be able to throw some light on this in future blogs.

Myriad’s connection here is much more limited – a Jate Lobell son called Raleigh Road was imported and raced here by Sir Roy McKenzie for 40 starts, 4 wins and 4 places.

Although the Misty Raquel branch is probably the most well known here, there are some other stunning performers dotted through through Richelle Hanover’s line and through the generations of other descendants of Rochelle Hanover. Just to mention a few: See You At Peelers (by Bettor’s Delight, 1:49.2US, $1,573,260), Robust Hanover (by Warm Breeze, 1:52.2, $1,613,667), Chairmanoftheboard (by Meadow Skipper,  $1,341,823), Elusive Prey (by Western Hanover, 1:51.2, $802,706), Speed Again (by Dragon Again, 1:48.1, $882,296), Capital Request (by Life Sign, 1:49.2, $753,204), Mystic Desire (by Real Desire,1:50.0, $786,009), Fridaynightflight (by Panspacificflight, 1:51.3, $617,495), the mare Bunny Lake (by Precious Bunny, 1:49.0, $2,843,476) and her two sons Bestofbest Hanover (1:48.4, $586,041) and Tobago Cays (1:50.0, $818,272), plus a more recent one – the current 3yo Angel or Terror (by Western Terror, 1:53.1,$103,001), the winner of the USA Arden Downs Stakes for 2yo fillies in the previous season.

Chairmanoftheboard, a very well performed grandson of Richelle Hanover, was available in New Zealand as a sire for just two seasons, for 79 live foals but his legacy is minor. Read NY Times article about Chairmanoftheboard beating Falcon Seelster in the $600,000 Cane Pace in 1985. Update: 6 April 2016 trials – almost as I was writing this blog, a 2yo filly called Toppatherock from Sharn’s Delight (daughter of Sharn, possibly Chairmanoftheboard’s best filly in NZ) qualified – results.

Again you can find a few double ups in that lot I’ve listed above, not just Panspacificflight (who shares a very similar maternal line with Art Major), and Precious Bunny who brings in Romola Hal’s son Romeo Hanover as a sire on the bottom maternal line, but also Life Sign whose maternal line goes to K Nora and right back to Miss Duvall.


Romola Hal’s 1962 daughter Rotate is a bit of a revelation. She sneaks under the radar, I think, because it takes a few generations to see which branch of a line is going to keep up the momentum, which river is going to keep flowing on even if sometimes it eddies and braids along the way.

In Rotate’s case, it is her Overtrick daughter Revolve who has ensured this branch has flourished overall, and is still tossing up some excellent performers from a wide range of its offshoots into the current day. Remarkably she has 18 foals and 14 of those were winners. Seven of her 18 foals meet the criteria themselves or through their own descendants to be included in the Classic Families database.

Just looking at some of the best of her descendants that were born from year 2000 onwards – Fancy Filly (by Western Hanover, 1:49.4, $1,080,806), Serious Comfort (by Serious Bunny, $622,468), Top Gear (by Real Desire, 1:50.0, $549,771), Adventure Bound (by Camluck, 1:49.2, $519,434), Native Bride (by Allamerican Native, 1:50.0, $707,493), Big Deal (by McArdle, 1:49.1, $818,544) and her half sister Galimony (by Artiscape, 1:52.4, $485,913), Coffee Addict (by Dragon Again, 1:51.1, $424,303) and her brother Mudslide (1:50.0US $242,399), as well as their dam’s half brother Something for Doc (by Western Hanover, 1:50.0,$619,972), St Lads Kingpin (by Million Dollar Cam, 1:50.0, $443,671), Itrustyou (by Third Straight, 1:48.2, $747,033), Rafferty Hanover (by Western Ideal, 1:51.3, $379,728) and Restive Hanover (by The Panderosa, 1:51.4, $941,971).

And that’s just most of the top ones racing during that period – there are many more with stakes $100,000+.

I can find nothing that descends from Rotate breeding on in Australia or New Zealand – with the exception of  Rotate’s 1965 Dancer Hanover son Rite Retort who was imported to Australia as a sire and had 163 foals from 1977 to 1983 for 31 starters and 24 winners. The database credits one of them as winning over $70,000 which got me quite excited – but checking the horse’s performances I think it’s a data entry error and should be corrected to just over $7000. Very little worth noting seems to have come from this sire in spite of his lovely breeding.

If I have missed a descendant of significance here, please let me know – and also if I have got something wrong. It is easy to lose yourself in the tributaries of this mighty river!

Next time: a quick recap on Romola Hanover’s legacy – and then we will start to talk with some of the breeders of the family in this part of the world.

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