My friend over at Bloodstock in the Bluegrass did a post on Tosmah’s produce record. He did a good job as usual. I did not remember that Tosmah’s last foal was by Ribot.
“Sometimes splendid racemares do not reproduce much of their excellence,” he noted, and I agree with that statement. That is not the same thing as saying, as some people do, that splendid racemares generally are NOT good producers. That is utterly unsubstantiated (except for anecdotal evidence). All you have to do to look at various studies of racing class of dams, which always show that graded stakes winners are better producers than nongraded stakes winners, which are better producers than stakes-placed mares, etc., on down the line.
As usual, anecdotal evidence is all that is ever offered to support the notion that splendid racemares are generally NOT good producers. Two names that frequently crop up in this regard are Lady’s Secret and Winning Colors, both of whom were trained by the same person, which might not be entirely coincidental.
The names of four excellent racemares who were also excellent producers come swiftly to my mind: Numbered Account, Relaxing, Personal Ensign, and Miesque. I do not believe I need to elaborate on their accomplishments on either score. If I thought about it more, I could come up with many more examples of excellent racemares who were also excellent producers, as well as a few who were not. The point is that examples are not conclusive evidence.
Unrealistic expectations also play a part in the perception that the best racemares are not good producers as a general rule. Zenyatta would have to produce a Triple Crown winner (or at least a champion or two) to be considered successful by most people. Anything less than that would be considered “disappointing.”
If you mate a 140 to a 140, the average expectation from that mating is a 120, not a 140 (with 100 being average and 130 being an average G1 winner). Regression to the norm. That is what most people fail to understand in attempting to evaluate the produce records of excellent racemares.
And in the case of Tosmah, as my friend noted, breeding her to stallions that were 80s or 90s at best (except for Ribot) surely did not help. If you look at it that way, you might conclude that Tosmah was acceptable at stud in producing any stakes winner at all.
(In hindsight, I would have liked to see Tosmah bred to Hail to Reason. Two-time leading sire Halo was by Hail to Reason out of Tosmah’s dam Cosmah. I am not a great believer in nicks, but it would have been worth a try, at least in retrospect. And it certainly would have been a better choice than Convex or Royal I. J.).