Friday, November 6, 2015

Songbird: Music To A Pedigree Junkie's Ears

For those who watched likely Eclipse Champion 2 Year Old filly Songbird make her graded stakes debut in the Gr. 1 Del Mar Debutante, we could only watch the fractions on the screen with our jaws dropped. Songbird (Medaglia D'Oro - Ivanavinalot, by West Acre), breaking from post 11, carved out eye-popping fractions of 22:1, 44:4, 1:09:4, and turned on afterburners to kick home in 1:22:3.

Songbird then went on to win the Gr. 1 Chandelier Stakes with ease, then was again the heavy favorite for the Gr. 1, 14 Hands Winery Breeder's Cup Juvenile Fillies, which she dominated without even being asked by jockey Mike Smith.

So, what is the secret sauce behind the pedigree of this Derby-bound superstar filly?

First, she is from the family that produced prolific sires Graustark and His Majesty, along with more recent Champion Sprinter Groupie Doll. Next, she has 5 x 6 cross of Prince John, sex-balanced, one from each parent, through the female lines of both her sire, Medaglia D'Oro, and her dam, Ivanavinalot, along with a 6 x 6 cross of the great mare Lalun, along with a 6 x 6 cross of Ribot, sex-balanced.

What's really amazing is the many crosses of blue hen mare La Troienne, but all through her son, Bimelech. Normally La Troienne performs best when she has a variety of her daughters plus her son lashed together. The variety in this mating comes from the cross of all the sources of Bimelech with Forty Niner and Prince John.  La Troienne is the result of crossing full siblings Ormonde and Ornament. Forty Niner's dam, File, brings no less than 4 crosses of Ornament to all the many sources of Ormonde present in Medaglia D'Oro. If you need to verify the effectiveness of crossing Forty Niner with virtually any source of La Troienne, look no further than the legendary success of Distorted Humor with mares carrying one or more crosses of La Troienne.

Helping La Troienne and Prince John with their chemistry with Domino is Tourbillon.

The only ingredient missing from the mix is Olympia, who is present in an increasing number of top stallions, like Pioneerof The Nile, Smart Strike, Rockport Harbor, Unbridled's Song, and Dynaformer, all in their dams.  American Pharoah has Olympia present at least four times (three times in his dam, Littleprincessemma, which would, again, be ignored by sire-line nicking software) and would be dynamite as a future mate for Songbird. Other future mates for Songbird should also have as many daughter strains of La Troienne and as many different daughter strains of La Troienne as possible. Quantity is good but variety is better when aiming for target ancestors like La Troienne. Sources like Blue Eyed Momo (think Francis S. from Johannesburg and Catienus) and her sister-in-blood Busanda (Buckpasser, Officer) and the full sibling trio of Striking, Busher, and Mr. Busher, out of Baby League (think Seattle Slew and A.P. Indy).

Many people are talking Kentucky Derby for this filly, though it remains to be seen if a male challenger will come on to the seen as a three year old.

Please keep the female line of both the sire and the dam in mind when targeting your next mating!

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