As breeding season fast approaches, Housatonic Bloodstock LLC is here to help you plan your 2018 matings.
Below is an excerpt from an analysis that we completed back in August of this year for a client who was seeking mating recommendations for his young Uncle Mo mare, Mo Light. The client is looking to breed to race, and gave us a cap of $25,000 for the stud fee. Among the four sires that we recommended was Munnings, and we have since booked Mo Light to Munnings for 2018 on behalf of our client.
If you would like help narrowing your options as far as who to breed your mare to in 2018, give us a call at (617) 595-8849, or email us at [email protected]. We will also be attending the upcoming Keeneland January Sale, if you’re looking to add to your equine portfolio.
[Munnings] should fit Mo Light extremely well.
A muscular, sprinter-type of average height, Munnings was a $1.7 million sale 2-year-old who broke his maiden first time out at Saratoga that season, before eventually winning a trio of Grade 2 races at 7 furlongs. His fourth crop are 2-year-olds of this year, and so far he has sired a total of 22 stakes winners, which is good for 8% of his foals of racing age – an extraordinary percentage this day and age. This translates to an average earnings index (AEI) of 1.83, despite having not covered an extremely impressive group of mares so far (his comparative index (CI) is a fairly minuscule 1.26, and only a third of all stallions can claim an AEI higher than their CI).
At least a half-dozen runners by Munnings have accounted for stakes wins in the last two months, and one of those is El Deal, who just won the Grade 1 Vanderbilt at Saratoga by eight lengths this past weekend. And although Munnings himself was a sprinter, he has sired a Grade 1 winner at ten furlongs in I’m a Chatterbox, as well as a Grade 2 winner at nine furlongs (on turf) in Om. This versatility in his progeny is yet another reason to like Munnings as a stallion, especially when breeding in a region with a circuit that features Laurel and Delaware and their extensive turf offerings.
His sales numbers are not as strong as one would expect given his racetrack results thus far; 36 of his yearlings averaging ~$38,000 at the sales last year, after 32 of them averaged ~$49,000 in 2015. But I believe that is a function of the quality of mares Munnings covered at just a $10,000 stud fee before his runners reached the races, and expect that his 2017 yearlings will sell better (he has just 63 2-year-olds this year, but covered 196 mares in the book that produced this year’s yearlings, before covering 182 mares last year at an increased stud fee of $25,000). Regardless of how well they sell – or not – Munnings has already proven he can get runners from just about any mare.
In addition to believing in Munnings generally, his pedigree meshes quite nicely with Mo Light’s, as well. As noted above, Mo Light’s dam is a half to stakes winners by Gone West and Storm Cat, and Munnings is a son of Speightstown, who is by Gone West out of a Storm Cat dam. Plus, in addition to the two lines of Secretariat that come from those stallions, Munnings has another strain of the ’72 Triple Crown winner who appears as the broodmare sire of his third dam.
This mating would result in 4×5 inbreeding to Mr. Prospector, and Munnings has those two crosses of Secretariat that would both appear in the fifth generation of this hypothetical foal. Northern Dancer does not appear in the foal’s five-cross pedigree at all, though he shows up twice in the sixth generation and twice more in the seventh. Also of note in this cross (though its effects on the ability of the foal are questionable) is that both Munnings and Mo Light trace to the Blue Hen mare La Troienne “tail female” via her granddaughter Searching, who is Munnings’ sixth dam and Mo Light’s seventh.
While “nicks” should not be determinative, they can be useful tools, and I ran Blood-Horse “True Nick” reports with Munnings for each of Mo Light, Mine Light and Lite Light, which achieved grades of “B”, “A+” and “A++”, respectively. I also ran an “eNicks” report for Mo Light with Munnings, and that scored an “A”. Again, I would not base a stallion choice solely on nicks, but nothing in these ratings would weigh against using Munnings.
One last factor that I looked at, given that Uncle Mo’s daughters are too young for him to have a broodmare sire record of his own yet, is how Uncle Mo’s runners from Gone West-line mares have performed, and the answer is very well: Grade 1 winner Gomo and Grade 3 winner Lost Raven are both out of Elusive Quality mares, while Grade 2 winner Laoban is out of a Speightstown mare (and his second dam is by Lost Soldier, who happens to be a half-brother to Munnings’ second dam, La Gueriere).