Collection/Freezing From High Quality Sires?

I’m posting this here and not on the SH Breeding page because I’m specifically curious about JC stallions.

I know JC is live cover only, but do the high quality stallions ever get collected to preserve their lines elsewhere, or is it a non-thing since their “value” is seen through JC or on the track?

Would there ever be a chance of the JC allowing AI? Or is there reason from some of those top sires to have straws stored for other disciplines, like eventing?

Mostly it’s a non-thing for the reason you stated.

However there are TB stallions that are bred to Quarter Horse mares for Quarter Horse racing and I believe that’s done by AI. Very late in life, Storm Cat was AI’d for QH mares. Favorite Trick is another stallion that comes to mind, and I’m sure there are others.


Oh, that’s interesting. Thank you for the insight!

I have known of some TB stallions that sired racehorses and were also used for sport horse breeding (I don’t know if they did AI on the sport horse mares). But their stud fees weren’t very high and they weren’t very popular as racehorse sires. They weren’t top Kentucky stallions.

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In addition to what everyone else said:

Something I have no firsthand experience with but have heard anecdotally is that some of the breeding farms in areas where both TB and QH racing are prominent will collect and ship semen for their TB stallions for QH mares. It may be worth checking out what’s available in places like NM.

I think the only thing that could even start a serious conversation about AI in TBs would be a major disease outbreak, which has happened before.

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Cool. It was out of general curiosity, I have no actual reason for wanting to know. It just crossed my mind when I saw the post on the Malibu Moon which made me wonder if they ever collect and freeze off big time stallions just for the sake of possible preservation. I guess, at that point, they have enough offspring on the ground for it not to matter as much. The genetics are preserved in living stock.

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I don’t know the details, but there is occasional “reinforcement” breeding in addition to live cover. It is allowed by the JC. My vet requested it specifically for my difficult maiden mare back in 2012. She was deep horn inseminated at the breeding shed immediately after she was covered (successfully). It worked. Maybe the AI was unnecessary, but on May 29 near the end of the season we were taking every option available.

The stallion in question was Sightseeing, who stood at Richland Hills in Midway, KY.

I am not sure what exactly the “reinforcement” was…I assumed thawed frozen semen, but I didn’t know at that time that frozen must be given within 6hrs of ovulation. And I have no recollection that we timed her that precisely.

Most big time breeding sheds have well-equipped labs on site. It is customary for the “dismount” dribble to be collected in a cup and immediately examined by a vet under a microscope to determine good motility for that cover. It would not surprise me at all if there was semen stored in the lab too, for “back up” purposes.



Sometimes I wonder about young horses coming off a lucrative career. Collect and Freeze ‘just in case’ until they are more established? But then…just in case for what? One side of my head says ‘preserve the lines!!’ but then if the horse is dead his semen is no use for the track anyways…but preserve the lines! haha.

The concept of AI-ing after live cover is also quite interesting. I never thought about doing both. In that case would you have to pay separate fees for the Live Cover and the AI? Or was it possibly a stallion/motility issue?

No separate fees. Contract is for a live foal, desired by both parties. In my case, I don’t believe it was a stallion issue at all, it was my 14yo maiden mare with a tight cervix. My vet requested deep horn insemination to put the swimmers way up in there to maximize chance of fertilization. I honestly don’t know what their farm vet put in my mare, was it fresh (dismount? But that would be mostly gel?) or frozen? (Wouldn’t frozen timing be important?)

Nonetheless, my mare was pregnant so whatever works. :wink:

I’ve taken many other mares to big sheds, but don’t clearly remember any of them needing reinforced. Sometimes the stud farm vet would immediately infuse with an antibiotic after breeding.

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I might be wrong on this, but I think “reinforcement breeding” is only allowed to be fresh semen collected from the dismount sample for that specific mare. A stallion manager once told me that, but I’ve never fact checked the statement.

That doesn’t mean some places aren’t storing some, but it’s not quite as easy as just popping it into the freezer. You’re going to ruin your motility if you don’t slowly bring it down to temperature. And if you’re not using an extender, they’re probably going to run out of energy to swim when they are thawed. Breeding farms surely are capable of properly preparing samples for freezing, but it seems like a lot of investment and effort for something they can’t legally use. :woman_shrugging:


So much of the industry is hedged around live cover, I am not sure if AI will be feasible without some major overhaul. I wouldn’t expect it in our lifetime.

That being said if there is a specific stallion you really like, there is no harm in reaching out to the stallion station and asking if they are open to covering non-JC mares. You would be surprised – they often don’t come with that high dollar studfee in the event they say yes. Drawback is, you’re likely looking at live cover only.

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It wouldn’t be logical to do that for big name sires. I mean, where would be the sanity in having a 3020 filly who’s a great-great-great-great-great granddaughter of American Pharoah racing (or being bred to) a colt who’s an AI son of American Pharoah?
Or what would you think if in a couple of years you could enter your Justify colt in a race against a son of Northern Dancer (who’s all over Justify’s pedigree, but 60 years back)?

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True. For sires that are able to get an abundance of get on the ground, it wouldn’t make much sense. I acknowledged that above.

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Any chance they have any of his left in the “bank” for us non-race plebes? I was devastated when he passed away.

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