Furlough

It didn’t take us long during the course of the Reine-de-Course series to  appreciate just how fine the daughters of Man o’ War really were.  So there is nothing surprising about our lastest Reine, Furlough, being yet another of the great horse’s fine producers.

Furlough was bred by Walter M. Jeffords and she happened to be a contemporary of another Man o’ War Reine-de-Course named Coquelicot, ancestress of champions Pavot and Riverman.  Both Furlough and Coquelicot were retired the same year after winning just one race each and both were bred to Case Ace.

The result of the Case Ace-Furlough mating was Ace Card, who won the Schuylerville Stakes at two, but whose three-year-old form was compromised by bleeding.  As a producer, Ace Card became far more important, being crowned Broodmare of the Year in 1952, the year her son One Count was champion three-year-old.

Furlough’s other important daughter is the stakes winning *Mahmoud filly Adile.  Adile’s ancestors include Northern Jove, sire of champion two-year-old filly Candy Eclair, and Delaware Oaks winner Juanita, whose granddaughter Cinegita (by Secretariat) is responsible for a whole group of fine runners including Storm Star, Flanders and Surfside.

Ace Card’s family also continued to bloom.  Her daughter Roodles, by *Princequillo was born in her dam’s Broodmare of the Year season and has a wonderful branch via her granddaughter Tananarive (GB) which includes English champion Mrs. Penny and champion and classic winner Hatoof.

Thus the two main branches of Furlough have a distinctively different flavor. Ace Card’s Roodles branch has had excellent success abroad and Adeile’s Cinegita branch has been responsible for more precocity in North America.  However, it would be wrong to say that there is no European success in Pavonia’s group, though there is little raw speed from the Roodles’ descendents.

To date, the family has also exhibited a decided female sex bias.  One young sire in  particular, Unaccounted For by Private Account, may change all that.  But he is virtually on his own, as the other recent sire prospect who appeared to have a shot, Choctaw Ridge, was exported to Brazil, and several of the other well-bred males from the family were geldings.

There is, of course, the possiblity that either Hatoof or Flanders will get a very good sire son, so the final chapter on how this family fares as a producer of stallions will have to be written another day.  For now, however, it is the fillies who rule.

So far as inbreeding to the family, that is something of a sticky wicket. Because One Count sired only 12 stakes winners, it is increasingly difficult to find his blood, but one excellent source is via Handicap Triple Crown winner Fit To Fight.  Another source is Garthorn, who has not been a successful sire, but whose well-bred daughters should be fine as broodmares since he is, after all, a three-quarter brother to Known Fact.

Tahitian King, one of Roodles’ descendents, stood in California, but he did not do very well, so we are left with Unaccounted For’s anticipated success.  It would certainly be intriguing to cross him with Fit To Fight daughters, thus inbreeding to Ace Card, but we aren’t going to hold our breath until someone tries it.

So unless or until some other European types from this branch of Furlough’s family come to the U. S., it is highly unlikely that they will be available for inbreeding – one can only look a bit deeper in pedigrees for crosses of horses like Yildiz or My Card if doubling Ace Card is the goal.  Further, it is worth keeping an eye on the Europeans from this family, to see if anyone eventually attempts inbreeding to Tananarive.

To make things even more difficult, at least for the time being, Adeile’s descendents do not have anything going for them in the stallion department.  But with a young mare of Flanders’ quality in full production, we imagine that will change in the future.  Obviously, her top-class daughter Surfside can only increase the chances of this branch producing a good sire.

As is our custom, we enjoy recounting something of the racing careers of the best and brightest horses from a Reine-de-Course family and while it is a tossup between Mrs. Penny and Hatoof from Ace Card’s branch, there is little doubt that Flanders and her daughter Surfside have been the cream of the Pavonia branch to date.

Hatoof was seen by American racegoers to best advantage in the 1994 Beverly D., when she defeated champion Flawlessly, European champion User Friendly, Grade 1 winner Corrazona and Breeders’ Cup Distaff winner One Dreamer.  That U. S. victory marked the fourth country in which she had won a stake.

Trainer Criquette Head, who also trained her dam, said of Hatoof’s victory, “Today she had a lot going against her – 18 hours in the plane four days ago, running in this heat, and adjusting to the different style.  I’m sure the people who bet on Hatoof were a lot more worried than I was.  She likes to do things her own way.  If she wants to, she can do anything, but if she doesn’t want to, no one can make her.”

After the Beverly D., Hatoof returned to England for a try in the Champion Stakes, which she lost, then flew back to the U. S. for a second try in the Breeders’ Cup Turf (she had finished fifth behind Kotashaan the year before).  She very nearly won the Turf, but came up just a length shy of Tikkanen, while outfinishing the outstanding Paradise Creek.  It was her last race.

In addition to her marvelous performance in the Beverly D. and Breeders’ Cup Turf, Hatoof also won the Grade 2 E. P. Taylor Stakes in Canada; the classic Two Thousand Guineas and Group 1 Champion Stakes in England and the Group 2 Prix De L’Opera in France.  She also placed in several important events, including the Group 1 Prix Marcel Boussac.

Hatoof’s granddam, Mrs. Penny, also ran in the U. S., after a successful European career.  At two, she won three stakes including the Group 1 William Hill Cheveley Park Stakes and at three she scored in the French Oaks and Prix Vermeille (G1) as well as placing in both the English and Irish One Thousand Guineas.  At four, she won the Grade 3 Queen Charlotte Handicap in her native land, and also placed in the Manhattan Handicap.

As good as Mrs. Penny was as a producer, Hatoof has yet to prove her mettle in that regard.  She has been bred to Mr. Prospector (twice), Pleasant Colony and Rahy and neither of her racing age foals had run through the end of 1999.  We like the Rahy mating best, a current three-year-old named Red Fury.  We’ll keep our fingers crossed that he is up to the standard his dam has set for him.

Anyone who loves racing cannot help but be moved by a Thoroughbred giving his very racing life in order to win, which is what all of us witnessed as the gallant Flanders outdueled Serena’s Song in the 1994 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies.  Flanders tried so hard that day that she suffered a career-ending injury and never ran again.

When the daughter of Seeking The Gold retired to the breeding shed, it took her the minimum amount of time to produce an absolutely outstanding daughter in Surfside, a multiple Grade 1 winner in her own right.  Surfside may have shown in the Santa Anita Derby that the colts are a bit tough for her, but she has passed almost every other test in her young life.

These four outstanding mares – Mrs. Penny, Hatoof, Flanders and Surfside, define the phenotype of the Furlough family.  They can run long or short, over turf and dirt at the highest level, and their hearts seldom fail them.  It is quite a legacy.

As to Furlough’s own pedigree, on the surface she is simply inbred to Galopin, Hermit, and Pocahontas and her dam is inbred to Barcaldine and Longfellow.

Going a bit deeper, we discover that Barcaldine is inbred 1 x 2 to half siblings Solon and Bon Acord.  Man o’War’s third dam, Mizpah, also has a unique pedigree.  Her sire, Macgregor, is 2 x 3 to half siblings Jocose and Touchstone and she is 5 x 5 x 4 to half siblings Young Maniac, Bedlamite and Harriet.  She is also inbred to half siblings Orville x3/Paulowitz.

More Orville crosses are picked up in the pedigrees of Barcaldine and Australian and two crosses of his half brother Cervantes are also added.

When Furlough was bred to Case Ace to get Ace Card, Bend Or was linebred to and sex-balanced; Voter was sex-balanced and full brothers Ajax and Adam appeared 3 x 6.  Also, eight lines of the influential mare Queen Mary were accumulated via half siblings Blink Bonny x4/Haricot x3/Broomielaw and linebreeding to Rouge Rose was effected via multiple lines of Bend Or and Rose of York (sixth dam of Case Ace).

Something rather similar occurred when Furlough was bred to *Mahmoud to produce Adile.  The ‘surface’ inbreeding includes a 6 x 5 cross of full siblings Seirra and Sainfoin and there is also linebreeding to St. Simon and Hampton.

Going deeper, we find multiple lines of Rouge Rose via multiples of Bend Or (x4) crossed on his half sisters Rose of York and Rose Of Lancaster.  And  *Mahmoud’s Gainsborough contribution also adds two Queen Mary lines via Haricot and Blink Bonny.

Thus, a superior foundation for two top-class producers was firmly in place.  As the branches of the family evolved and were exposed to fine horses like *Princequillo, *Le Fabuleux, The Minstrel, Irish River, Roberto, Secretariat, Seattle Slew and so forth, it could not help but succeed.

We therefore welcome yet another Man o’ War daughter, Furlough, and her descendents Ace Card, Tananarive (GB), Adile, and Cinegita to the Reine-de-Course list.  We don’t know that you can have too many Man o’ War daughters as foundation mares.

Starlet Storm, dam of Flanders who in turn is the dam of Surfside, was added as an additional Reine-de-Course from this family in a subsequent issue of Pedlines.

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