The difficulty of marelines.

One thing is for sure, I am never too old to learn and I learn every day something new. I started New Year with my blog about proven marelines. I wondered if the Irish breeding knew strong damlines as well and there is a black hole of missing registrations. One example came from Tom Magee: “As an example we are breeding from the family of Loughend Lady whom we bought late in her life and was known to be a good broodmare. Her adult passport was blank apart from born 1978. We bloodtyped her to Legaun Prince. Marcus O'Donnell identified a 1978 Legaun Prince filly that became “lost” to the system. That filly was a half sister to Bells of Glory by Highland Flight out of Jingle Bells by Seven Bells. That’s a fantastic family. Anyway my point is the lines became broken from a recorded aspect but the marelines are there. A mare just doesn’t crawl out of a bog and spawn a dynasty. The record keeping is dysfunctional, the marelines are good, just unacknowledged.”


I want to continue about marelines. There are many good marelines and even quite a few top marelines. However some of the most used stallions come out of less strong motherlines, they have qualities that make excellent horses in combination with the right motherline. Also there are motherlines that had a certain click in the line and from then on they start to produce amazing sporthorses. The mare Normandy Night produced two 1m60 horses; Eloise de Semilly who jumped under the saddle of Harrie Smolders at 1m60 and Kalaska de Semilly who jumped at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games under the saddle of Shka. Latifah Al Maktoum. Eloise de Semilly has produced also a 1m60 horse; Pilot under the saddle of Geoffrey Bloomfield. Some could say this is not a good line because it hasn’t produced three generations of sporthorses, but maybe it will need time to develop. With the motherline of Contender it started with the mare Gofine, before that there was no mare who had produced sporthorses. Nobody would say now that this is a bad mareline. It is easy to mention a few good marelines, but it is difficult to mention a few upcoming marelines. It can fall apart or it can develop in the right direction.

When is a line proven?

There are many breeders and there are just as many opinions. In my previous blog I asked what are proven lines. Now I would like to ask: When is a line proven?

My example 

I have just written for an English publication about breeding a four page article on Stamm 2294. I have been attached to this motherline since 1992. This motherline is very, very small. Since 2003, I have asked many breeders and journalists if they have heard of this motherline. The answer was always no, or somebody could vaguely remember a mare. In 2004, I purchased a jacket with the Stamm number on the back - still nobody could tell me something about the line. In 2006 I visited two breeders in Holstein who were the only ones breeding with this line. One breeder stopped with this line and sold everything to Poland. The other breeder at that time only had two mares from this mareline (now one) and one of them was Dolli, who would become mother to Charmander, Inken I and the great-grandmother to Clicksem and grandmother to Dinken. I always believed in this line, even when Dinken wasn’t even born. I do believe that when there is a certain reason that you believe in a mare, that you should not give up your dream because others say she isn’t good enough. I also perfectly realize that some of the mares from this line came in the right hands. This is the same for the horses in the sport. A horse can be a top sport horse, but if it doesn’t have the right rider, it will never reach what it is capable of. To set my example even more extreme, there was a breeder from Belgium who told me flat out about six or seven years ago, that ‘my’ Stamm wasn’t worth anyting. This same person was bidding on a son by Dinken at the last stallion approvals… 


I am looking forward to read your opinion with your first and last name and please take notice that your reply might be published.