Well, everyone interested in the Yearling sales of 2020 has now got their catalogues. and the sales will soon be underway. There are undoubtedly good winning horses there-the problem for buyers is identifying them among those who won’t be winners. All you need is a bit of skill and plenty of luck. The 2020 sales kick off with the Magic Millions. I don’t propose to go through the whole catalogue but let’s look at what for me are a couple of highlights.
Delta Crosses are rare
The most interesting horse to me is lot 209, a colt by Snitzel out of a Encosta de Lago mare.This colt has a 2×2 cross of a full brother to a full sister (Redoute’s Choice x Monsoon Wedding). The parentage of both horses is Danehill x Shantha’s Choice. This cross is a type of Delta cross and is quite rare. It is not often you find a proven highly successful stallion with his full sister in the female tail line. Of course to have a chance of success both sire and dam participating in the cross need to be of good quality. Mating low quality stallion and mare just to get a delta cross won’t achieve much. In this case no-one would argue about Redoute’s Choice and Shantha’s Choice being of high quality.
Well does it work? Lando, probably the best German horse in the last 25 years, was a 3×3 Delta Cross (Liberat x Liberty). Both son and daughter being by Birkhahn out of Lis. Lando raced successfully in the United States and Europe and won the 1965 Japan Cup in which two Aussies (Danewin and Stony Bay) finished down the track.
Other examples are Habibti 5x G1, 1x G2 and one of the highest ranked sprinters in European racing history, that was a Delta cross; 5×4 Neraco to Sun Princess.
River Bay, 2xG1, 1xG2 was the winner of the Hollywood Gold Cup and was a Delta cross 5×5; Nearco to Mumtaz Begum.
Is close inbreeding 2×2 a problem? Well it was common but fell out of favour many years ago. But if you want a view, here is a start: