Posts Tagged ‘yearling sales sires’

I thought I should add a few stats on how Santanna Blue Chip has performed in New Zealand as a sire – and perhaps someone can do the same as a blog comment for the Australian bred foals.

Right now he’s had 22 qualifiers for 10 starters and 4 winners (oldest are 3yos) – being Three Blind Mice (now in Australia), I Smart, Carlos Santana, and Hear The Call (exported to Australia). There would be another couple in Mullinalaghta Lad and Macey Blue Chip who are not far away, which would make his percentages quite respectable for a new sire. None of them have blown us away, but they are showing some toughness.

Surprisingly for me, only a few of his qualifiers are out of In The Pocket, none from In The Pocket sons. I would have thought we would see Matt’s Scooter on the maternal line as an opportunity? But it is a wide mix of mares, not uncommon scenario for a middle range new sire, as breeders search for what their mare needs. His best performer as a 3yo in North America was Windsong Jack, who has won almost $300,000 and is by a Million Dollar Cam mare. That mare has both Jate Lobell and Die Laughing in her pedigree close, which Australian mares echo perhaps, rathe than New Zealand?  But one swallow doesn’t make a spring I guess.

For New Zealand? Well, its all too late, but if I was looking now I would say good scenarios with this particular sire would have been McArdle, Mach Three and Grinfromeartoear. And I’m wondering why owners/breeders aren’t looking harder at the younger mares they have who have remarkably good genes as broodmares.

But that’s another blog, which is coming up on NZ yearling sales damsires.

Santanna Blue Chip live foals numbers were 52, 65, 46 in his first 3 years, and the results are not in from this season’s foals of course – where, incidentally, he served by far his biggest book (at 114). These are very typical stats for an imported horse that comes without heaps of hype but a very good record and suitable pedigree. They have to get enough mares to make their own niche as a sire. The same is true for our own locally bred sires. Getting 40 to 60 mares is a basic requirement, just to end up with enough foals on the ground from a range of mares to give the sire any sort of chance. A good sire will capitalise on that, but often that’s only clear after the 3yo season is done and dusted. A glamour 2yo is a huge bonus, but from a small number of foals it is potentially labelled “just a freak”.  The fact that his bookings went up again is interesting. Breeders seemed to be liking what they saw.

Santanna Blue Chip obviously still has the will and ability to race and win, and the future may lie in him becoming a really good all-aged racer, like Mister Big and others have done. A reputation won twice,  but perhaps indicating qualities of toughness, enduring competitiveness and soundness which will also stand his foals in good stead.

So his “retirement” back to the racetrack is both a blessing (if he really does well) and a pain-in-the-butt for breeders, especially those who are just getting foals on the ground. Marketing: “He’s a wonderful Dad, but he pissed off when I was just a baby and went back to a life of adventure and competition. I don’t think Mum misses him, but I might at Sales time.”

I know how you feel. I went to Real Desire, like many others, only to find he’s been withheld by North American owners (for the good of the horse, I give them credit). But shuttle sires like Real Desire, Santanna Blue Chip and Jereme’s Jet are always going to vulnerable to a change of mind/circumstances and suddenly disappear from the market. It’s frustrating, but that’s life.

We need to retain confidence in the sires and our foals until time (rather than this year’s sales prices) really tell the story.

Shuttle sires are “flotsam and jetsam” on the sea currents of a fickle standardbred market.

As breeders we need to be very canny “beachcombers”.

Who knows when we will find the sire that is ambergris – and particularly ambergris for our mare?

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