A comment I received on one of my recent posts, on prices by racing class of the dam, is the genesis of this post. I will paraphrase that comment rather loosely. It said that if you looked at the progeny of Storm Cat and A.P. Indy, for example, the lower-class (in terms of racing class) mares bred to them would have worse results than the higher-class mares bred to them.
I wondered if that were indeed true. I am not sure that it is true for Storm Cat and A.P. Indy. But using only two sires is not a good way to go about it anyway.
I think I came upon a better way of going about it. Take all the sales foals of 2008-2111 that sold for $100,000 or more and see how their prices and results worked out by the racing class of their dams.
I picked $100,000+ because I wanted to look at the best foals in this group (or at least those perceived to be the best) regardless of their sires, not just the Storm Cats and A.P. Indys. Many of these foals will be out of black-type mares, which partially accounts for their prices. Such mares have the most racing class and the least pedigree going for them.
Many of these foals will be out of mares which were not black type (which were not of high racing class themselves). There are many reasons why foals out of such mares would bring high prices. The most obvious is that the foals were by good sires, Storm Cat, A.P. Indy, etc. The mare might have previously produced a stakes winner. The mare might be by an excellent broodmare sire. The mare might be closely related to a really good stakes winner, even though the mare is not black type herself and has not yet produced any black-type runners. The mare might have any combination of these four factors.
Such mares have the least racing class and the most pedigree going for them. I will return to this theme of racing class versus pedigree later.
of the 45,562 sales foals of 2008-2111, 5,841 sold for $100,000 or more. That is 12.8%, or a little over one eighth of the total, and so these 5,841 foals represent the top eighth (roughly) of the population.
The chart below shows the distributions of both the overall population and the “elite” ($100,000+) population by racing class of the dam.
Category Total Foals % $100,000+ Foals % Change
All Stakes Winner 6,659 14.62 1,655 28.33 +94%
All Stakes Placed 5,232 11.48 757 12.96 +13%
All Others 33,671 73.90 3,429 58.71 –21%
Totals 45,562 100.00 5,841 100.00 0
All stakes winners account for 14.62% of the overall population but 28.33% of the elite population, an increase of 94%, meaning that a foal in the elite population is 94% more likely to be out of a stakes winner than a foal in the overall population. No surprises there. All stakes-placed mares were +13%. All others were –21%. No surprises there.
The individual breakdowns for all others were interesting. Winners (not black type) were –29%, unraced were –11%, placed were –12%, and unplaced were –13%. So winners had the lowest representation of all among the elite group. That is one reason why their averages and maverages were also lowest of all (and lower than unraced, placed, and unplaced), because they had the lowest percentage of $100,000+ foals.
Below are the prices for $100,000+ foals.
Foals Average Maverage Price Index
5,841 $230,260 455.08 2.96
Needless to say, these prices are quite high compared to the overall average of $46,418 and the overall maverage of 154.00 (which by definition is a Price Index of 1.00).
Below are the racetrack results for $100,000+ foals. APPSW stands for average Performance Points per stakes winner, a measure of the quality of stakes winners involved, 662 being average.
Foals Stakes Winners % APPPSW PPI (Result)
5,841 468 8.01 831 3.12
Not surprisingly, this elite group had a much higher percentage of stakes winners from foals than the overall popuation (8.01% to 3.23%). And they were much better stakes winners as well, with 831 average Performance Points per stakes winners (compared to the overall average of 662). Taking both quantity and quality of stakes winners into account, these 5,841 foals had a PPI (result) of 3.12.
That PPI of 3.12 compares favorably with its Price Index of 2.96, especially when you consider that the higher the Price Index, the more difficult it is for the PPI to exceed it. So these 5,841 foals actually outperformed their high prices.
Rather than comparing prices and results to the overall population, from this point forward I am going to treat these 5,841 foals as an independent population and compare them to each other in the following breakdowns by prices and results. Prices first.
Category Foals Average Maverage Price Index
All Stakes Winners 1,655 $263,647 479.37 1.05
All Stakes Placed 757 $217,230 449.10 0.99
All Others 3,429 $217,022 444.68 0.98
The prices for these three broad groups do not differ much at all. Stakes winners are a little bit higher than the other two groups, which are very close together.
Below are the racetrack results for these same three groups.
Category Foals Stakes Winners % APPPSW PPI (Result)
All Stakes Winners 1,655 147 8.88 967 1.29
All Stakes Placed 757 69 9.11 665 0.91
All Others 3,429 252 7.35 797 0.88
With a PPI of 1.29, all stakes winners were by far the best, followed by all stakes placed at 0.91 and all others at 0.88. All stakes placed had the highest percentage of stakes winners from foals (9.11%) but the worst quality of stakes winners (only 665).
Not let us compare prices versus results for these three groups.
Category Foals Price Index PPI (Result)
All Stakes Winners 1,655 1.05 1.29
All Stakes Placed 757 0.99 0.91
All Others 3,429 0.98 0.88
All stakes winners outperformed. They sold for prices about 5% above average for all 5,841 foals and achieved results about 29% above average. The other two groups underperformed. All stakes placed had a price of 0.99 and a result of 0.91. All others had a price of 0.98 and a result of 0.88.
The first group (all stakes winners) had the most racing class going for them. The third group (all others) had the least racing class going for them. The second group (all stakes placed) was somewhere in between.
The first group (all stakes winners) had the least pedigree considerations going for them. The third group (all others) had the most pedigree considerations going for them. The second group (all stakes placed) was somewhere in between.
All of which confirms my overall thesis, that racing class is at least as important as pedigree in broodmare selection, if not more so.