by Norman Hall
In researching my book on the maternal lines of standardbreds called Queen Among Queens I found a book called Patterns Of Greatness by Alan Porter, a book about thoroughbred breeding. There was one quotation in there that spurred my interest in the evolution of maternal lines and the influence of special individuals. He urged breeders to “delve deeply” into a pedigree to discover the underlying genetic strengths which are not readily apparent in the first few generations. As he said: “This can reveal that one particular background cross has been built up to a point where it dominates a pedigree and reaches a critical mass reinforcing vital genes to the point where they explode in the form or a dynamic performer.”
Shartin N is a perfect example of this scenario.
He further speculated that close inbreeding maternally can bring about positive mutations as he referenced Marianna Haun’s book on the X-factor, a genetic inheritance carried on the X-chromosome of the mares on the maternal line.
That may sound a bit airy-fairy to most readers, but it has been a key consideration of mine since reading and writing about it and indeed was a factor in my recommendation to purchase McWicked, the 2018 Horse Of The Year by McArdle. Now we have a similar situation with the 2019 winner of the Dan Patch Horse Of The Year in Shartin N. It is a long story so bear with me because in part it goes back to the very beginnings of the standardbred breed maternally to a daughter of Bartlets Childers, foundation sire of the thoroughbred and to his full brother Flying Childers, the founder of the standardbred breed. To read the full story of these individuals you can find it in Queen Among Queens available by download from the pedigreematching.com website.
In the near term, the pedigree of Shartin N revolves around the presence of Tar Heel maternally as it did with McWicked, and as indeed it did for many of McArdle’s top performers since it is the most consistent factor in his stallion profile. Shartin N is by a son of McArdle called Tintin In America, who like McArdle also has a maternal line that is dominated by the influence of Tar Heel, one of the best broodmare sires of the past 50 years, and appears in the maternal lines of other great broodmare sires such as Albatross and Bret Hanover.
Tar Heel’s influence on maternal lines comes from his dam by Volomite whose dam was by San Francisco whose own dam was Oniska, a 2×3 maternal inbred to the X-factor influence through Lida W, a daughter of Nutwood, the best son of Miss Russell, the subject of my book Queen Among Queens.
Shartin N’s dam, Bagdarin, goes back seven generations to a mare called Protege by Jack Potts who was one of the first great broodmare sires Down Under and his dam was by Steiner from a daughter of Nutwood called Miss Marjoe. The dam of Protege was Abyssinia who brings a maternal trace through the dam of World Champion Arion whose dam was Manette by Nutwood. Protege, therefore is an X-factor double to Miss Russell, a pretty good starting point.
Protege had one daughter, Chenault, by U Scott who was then bred to Bachelor Hanover whose maternal family is one of the top maternal families in Minnehaha that is also one of the longest since it is the one that goes all the way back to that daughter of Bartlets Childers in the late 1600’s.
The mating of Bachelor Hanover to Chenault produced Bravine, Shartin’s fifth dam. By coincidence, perhaps, the fourth dam of Tintin In America, Zenover, was a descendant of one of the best maternal families in Australia/New Zealand and she too was by Bachelor Hanover and from a mare by U Scott. That makes Shartin N an X-factor double to its source, the ancestral mom herself, The Spanker Mare. But that is just another component of her maternal strength, there is much more added in the next three generations that built up into the explosion that is Chartin N.
Bravine foaled Kiatina by Fallacy whose maternal line contributed a North American link to the X-factor through two daughters of American Star. Kiatina was then bred to Noodlum, a son of Bachelor Hanover, whose maternal line brings in another trace to American Star through the dam of World Champion Dexter, the fastest son of Hambletonian, as well as doubling up the family of Minnehaha.
The breeding to Noodlum produced Kinsale, third dam of Shartin N, and she had six daughters but only two of them, both daughters of Save Fuel, had success as broodmares, and that was when the pedigree met up with Meadow Skipper for the first time through Save Fuel’s dam by that sire.
Slatina is the second dam of Shartin N and her full sister is Chivasso who, when bred to McArdle, produced the first decent performer in this entire maternal line to date in McDana N who made $165,000 mostly in the United States. She now has another of her sons, Italian Delight N, a recent import, currently racing in Yonkers Open competition as a result of two wins at the Meadowlands taking a record of 1.50.1.
Slatina was bred to Live Or Die whose dam, Mica Lobell, is an X-factor double to Tar Heel, and whose maternal line goes back to yet another daughter of Nutwood called Stray Moments and three more traces to American Star. This was exactly the kind of breeding needed to provide the fuel for the fire lit by Tintin In America in the breeding to Bagdarin, the first female in the maternal line to beat 2:00 with a win in 1.57.4.
Tintin In America has a dam that is a maternal X-factor double to Tar Heel and as a filly Shartin N inherits that bonus to her own maternal traces to Tar Heel through her own dam. This is in addition to the interesting X-factor doubles to Bachelor Hanover and to Meadow Skipper.
In recent times, I have also noticed two pedigree patterns, which I code as DD or TB, that occur often in top individuals. Shartin N is an example of the TB pattern where the Adios/Hal Dale sire line of McArdle is inbred in her dam through sons of Adios and Good Time for an added bonus.
This affinity of Tintin In America for Tar Heel maternally is evident in his best performers with the next best, also a filly, bred in similar fashion but perhaps not with the same long term build up maternally. His sire, McArdle, shows the same affinity for Tar Heel with the vast majority of his best being from mares that are X-factor doubles to Tar Heel or are X-factor doubles themselves as a result of McArdles own maternal doubles to Tar Heel in his each of his first three dams.
McWicked had the added benefit of having a DD pedigree pattern where the maternal lines in his dam are the same as those in his own dam and those of his sire. The DD pattern has also produced such recent champions as Greenshoe, Six Pack, Manchego, Mission Brief, Gimpanzee, Hannelore Hanover and Always B Miki among others while TB patterned champions include Jimmy Freight, Warrawee Ubeaut, and several of the best by Muscle Hill including Marion Marauder, Propulsion, and Green Manalishi.
My fascination with the Tar Heel influence, in addition to supporting my recommendation to buy McWicked as a result of four of his first five dams being double copies to Tar Heel or his dam-sire Volomite, pointed me to my first and only credit as a breeder. That was in the form of Scarlet Chaser, from a mare inbred to Tar Heel. His sire was Hussy Chaser, a colt I bought as a yearling for $1,500 on the strength of him being from a mare that was also an x-factor inbred to Tar Heel, and he went on to be the second richest Maritime bred in his day earning over $520,000. I got him back when he retired and then looked for the right mare, one with the Tar Heel double and found one in Lucky Hare, a daughter of Precious Bunny. The resulting colt, Scarlet Chaser, retired last year after making over $240,000 and being race timed in 1:49.4 to become the fastest race-timed colt ever bred on PEI and the fastest and richest Island bred colt by an Island based sire.
Thank you Alan Porter.