Bruce Lowe Family Numbers Prices

The fundamental tenet of the Bruce Lowe Figure System is that the lowest family numbers produce the best racetrack results. Family number one should be the best, followed by family number two, etc.

There is a certain “logic” behind this assumption, a fatally flawed “logic.” I will explain this “logic” in my next post. But for right now let us just accept this fundamental tenet at face value.

If the lowest family numbers did indeed produce the best racetrack result, you would expect to see that reflected in their prices. So I categorized the sales foals of 2003-2007 according to their Lowe family numbers. I specified a minimum of 1,000 foals and ten stakes winners to qualify for individual examination. Twenty families qualified. The rest I lumped into a group called “all others.”

The prices are summarized in the table below. For each family number I listed its number of foals, its average price, its rank by average price, its maverage, its Price Index (a derivative of the maverage), and its rank by maverage and Price Index. The discussion resumes below.

Family Number          Foals          Average         Rank          Maverage       Price Index     Rank

13                                 2,258          $74,474              1                 175.40               1.08               1

7                                   1,503          $66,652              2                 165.05              1.01              10

23                                 2,019          $62,329              3                169.15               1.04               5

11                                  1,171          $60,171               4                170.97               1.05               3

21                                  1,292         $59,130               5                171.75               1.05               2

8                                   4,637          $59,645               6                165.56              1.02               8

12                                 1,681          $58,817                7                169.25              1.04               4

all others                     4,584         $57,416                8                166.80              1.02               7

3                                   4,361          $56,631               9                165.34              1.01               9

5                                   3,378          $55,603             10                168.85             1.04               6

22                                 1,677          $52,987              11                163.97             1.01               11

14                                 2,523          $52,811              12               163.48             1.00               12

1                                  10,036        $51,972               13               162.22             0.99               13

4                                   7,893          $51,475              14               161.04             0.99                15

2                                   5,837          $51,201              15               160.13            0.98                 16

9                                   6,640          $50,489             16               161.51            0.99                 14

16                                 3,430          $50,040             17               159.70           0.98                  17

19                                 1,475           $49,647              18               159.12          0.98                  18

10                                 1,747           $45,112              19               154.98          0.95                  19

20                                 1,371           $42,275              20              145.89          0.89                  20

6                                   1,201          $40,061               21              142.55          0.87                  21

Twenty individual families are listed, from one to 23 (families 15, 17, and 18 did not qualify), plus “all others” makes 21.

The top five families by average price were seven through 23. Families one through five were ranked 13th, 15th, ninth, 14th, and tenth respectively. Not exactly what you would expect to find if the lowest-numbered families did indeed produce the best racing results.

There is an expression in the world of golf: “Drive for show. Putt for dough.” Averages are for show. Maverages are much more important in that they are a more accurate reflection of the relative value of individual groups.

Family number seven, for example, ranks second by averages but only tenth by maverages. That means its average was artificially inflated by a number of very high-priced sales nags. Its maverage minimized the statistical effects of those high-priced nags and gives a better idea of the overall value of the entire group.

But overall, the maverages look a lot like the averages in terms of which families rank highest and lowest. Families 16, 19, ten, 20, and six are ranked 17th through 21st (last) by both averages and maverages.

The top five by maverages are families 11 through 23. Families one through five are ranked 13th, 16th, ninth, 15th, and sixth, respectively. Family number six is last by both categories. Not exactly what you would expect to find if the lowest-numbered families did indeed produce the best racing results.

The largest family was number one (10,036 foals), followed by four (7,893 foals), nine (6,640 foals), and two (5,837 foals). These four families were ranked 13th through 16th by both averages and maverages.

Prices are a measure of expected success, or popularity. The more popular a family is, the more foals it will include. The more foals it will include, the more foals of mediocre (or worse) actual value it will include.

These families are the victims of their own popularity. A breeder is more inclined to try to sell a foal whose fourth dam is Rough Shod II (family number five) than a foal whose fourth dam is Blinking Owl (family number 20). Hence family number five includes more foals of mediocre (or worse) actual value than family number 20, which depresses the prices for the former.

Family number 13 was ranked first by both averages and maverages. That family includes such important broodmares as (in alphabetical order) Glad Rags II, Monade, Myrtlewood, and Vagrancy. Nice, solid names, but not in the same perceived class as La Troienne (family number one) nor Rough Shod II (family number five), for example.

Of course prices are relatively meaningless unless accompanied by concomitant racetrack performances. In my next post I will examine the racetrack performances of these 21 families relative to their prices.


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