Once every decade or so a trotter bred along pure pacing bloodlines appears on the scene and takes the harness racing world by storm, leaving breeding pundits scratching their heads.
The bonny mare of the early 2000's La Coocaracha is a prime example. She was by Safely Kept, a top young American pacer from the dominant pacing sireline of Meadow Skipper, and out of a mare by the great American pacer Kentucky, who became a leading sire of pacing juveniles in Australia.
Not As Promised, the brilliant winner of the $75,000 E L Titan @ Haras Des Trotteurs Victoria Trotters Derby at Maryborough, is another case in question.
There is not a single drop of trotting blood on either side in the first five removes of his pedigree!
Not As Promised's sire, Betting Line, a Little Brown Jug and North America Cup winning son of Bettor's Delight, has left only two trotters among his 140 winners in this country.
And, though Betting Line's dad Bettor's Delight sired several top square-gaiters out of pacing mares, most notably On Thunder Road and Drop The Hammer, they were the exception rather than the rule.
All Promises, the dam of Not As Promised, was one of the best daughters of Albert Albert, winning 17 races including the Australian and Queensland Oaks and, at the stud, produced seven foals of racing age – all by pacing stallions – five of whom are winners. Not As Promised is her only progeny to win as a trotter.
The next dam, As Promised, won 13 races and left 10 winners at the lateral gait, the third dam, Aquacade, won 11 and threw six pacing winners, while the fourth dam Aqua Kerry and fifth dam Aqua Star produced five and four winners respectively – all pacers.
Not As Promised was bred in Victoria by leading horsewoman Jess Tubbs, but belongs to one of Queensland's oldest and most successful pacing families.
Alabar Bloodstock's Majestic Son was the leading sire at the Aldebaran Park Redwood carnival with five winners. Aldebaran Eagle, Kvintet Avenger and Sebastian K all sired two winners.
Prominent Maryborough breeder Peter Gleeson produced the quinella pair, Very Pretty and Free To Play in the Logical Staffing Solutions Tatlow Stakes at Melton. Very Pretty is out of The Good Times, who won the Tatlow in 2011.
Tough Tilly, one of Victoria's greatest ever racemares, has been retired and will be mated with the 2020 USA Horse of the Year Tall Dark Stranger. Bred and owned by Benstud Standardbreds, the Captaintreacherous mare won 17 races including six at Group level and a whopping $618,333 in stakes.
The siblings Soso Majestic (by Majestic Son) and Sosomaori (by Wind Cries Maori) won on the same card at Maryborough last Friday. Both are out of the 2006 Victoria Trotters Oaks winner Sosoclassy and were bred by Dot Lang