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We Are Flying Solo

December 30, 2013

Isn't Time Off Supposed To Let You Rest And Catch Up?

Citation: ranked #3 after only Man O'War and Secretariat
I must be mistaken...

So I'll post my 300th mea culpa.  But I will share with you my ongoing project which fascinates me!

I mentioned that Pinterest had caught my addiction, er, eye despite my best efforts.  I had never really had any desire to look at scrapbooks or teenagers' bulletin boards, but with some digging, I did find more to it.  Poking led to clicking, clicking led to more clicking and I began to put together a visual collection of Encore's family tree, among a few other fun boards.  And it's amazing!

Discovering new parts to old stories and new stories of new horses is like finding a key to one of the most amazing treasure chests of all time.  My childhood was filled with re-readings of my favourite stories such as "Man o' War" and "Black Gold" (who I never knew was infertile) and "Old Bones: the story of Exterminator."  My shelves were lined with Stablemate models of Swaps and Native Dancer (and many more!).  Now I feel like I am touching each one as I lay my hand on Encore's neck.

I never knew they were related!  Count Fleet, 1943 Triple Crown winner -- and Mr P's great grandsire!
The one and only...
The Thoroughbred heritage and legacy truly is magical.  Part of me wonders why Encore was gelded; while he wasn't a stakes winner, he does have excellent conformation and he carries such a diverse mixture of old and legendary, European and American, famous and quirky lines.  Maybe he was just an asshole, hahaha, but more likely, and correctly so, few of the lines are rare and while he is special to me, his is not truly spectacular, as a good stallion such as AP Indy or or Secretariat or Buckpasser should be.

I continue to dig deeper and find more information about each horse and uncover the stories of the less famous, but still incredibly influential names.  I itch to organize it better!  Where is that catchup time again???


  1. tracing Thoroughbred lineage is one of my favorite things to do too!

  2. Be careful, once you start, you can't stop!


  3. Nice idea for a project!! I can get lost in pedigree query so easily.

    Too bad Secretariat didn't live up to expectations as a sire of race winners. Performance at the track is no guarantee... He was a much better broodmare sire. Check out Weekend Surprise. :D

  4. Yep, Secretariat was the master of broodmares. Oh, you mean Encore's great-grandmother? Heehee -- indeed, she didn't even have to run, she foaled AP Indy.

  5. Pinterest has horses on it??? I just use it for recipes.

  6. OMG, search "horse racing" on Pinterest. Or just "horses." Or "horse art." Head explosion!

  7. If you really get into researching Secretariat you'll run into theories on the "secret" gene, or the "x-factor" gene. It can be clearly traced through bloodlines, but only passed through the female line. It really makes sense why Secretariat was a great racehorse, but couldn't pass the speed on to the males, only through the broodmares.

    Genetics is amazing stuff!

  8. Austen, I did discover that, although NOT with Secretariat, funnily enough -- it was in Blue Larkspur (check out our Pinterest TB Heritage board), an interesting stallion who is all over Encore's pedigree, including through Buckpasser, War Admiral, Hail To Reason, and Seattle Slew. Interestingly, none of those horses appear in Secretariat's lines, so I am super curious as to how far back it goes and to which horses.

    Did the Bull Dog line carry it? And Blue Larkspur was a grandson of Black Toney, who is all over the place - did he have it? Curiouser and curiouser!!