TB Pedigree help-looking at a yearling with 3x Storm Cat

Pretty much what the title says…the mare was quite tall (18h) and is a nice mover, as is the colt (now gelding). I have heard scary things about SC offspring/grand offspring, however he also shows up pretty far back… but he is there THREE times!

I am an adult ammy, have had several OTTB’s in the past but I don’t want a nightmare either.

Link to his pedigree.


and a picture of the sire. https://www.huntercreekfarms.com/right-rigger2.html

I know each horse is unique and a pedigree is just one part of the whole equation…plus you don’t ride the papers. However, being a yearling I can’t ride him yet either. He is a bargain price.

Thanks for any input.

I would not be deterred in the slightest. Quite a nice page. :yes: Granted, I don’t have first hand experience with the sire or broodmare sire, but both come from lines of correct, nice moving, athletic horses.

I’m assuming the negative you heard about Storm Cat is related to his temperament. That’s the #1 thing that tends to get said about him. He came by that reputation honestly, as many of his own sons and daughters were on the nuttier side. BUT, that temperament did not persist with consistency as Storm Cat got further back in the generations. The most I can say is that horses with a lot of Storm Cat blood trend towards the hotter/sensitive side more often than not, but certainly not in a bad or problematic way.


Texarkana, thank you! I am looking for dressage, not a 4* Eventer and both the mare and colt have quite nice movement. I admit I paused when I saw the pedigree. I am fine with sensitive but I don’t need a wild bucker or something that is fine then blows up for little apparent reason.

What about soundness? Any issues? I know he has Mr. P 3x as well but I also see Secretariat 3x…so I’m hoping the two cancel each other out :slight_smile:

Mr. P is not a soundness problem. That is one of those things people say to sound like they have an opinion. People criticized Mr. P’s conformation when he was lighting the world on fire, which in turn lead to a lot of the soundness talk. But with time, Mr. P sons and grandsons actually ended up leading the soundness metrics we have begun keeping in recent years. The thing about Mr. P is that a lot of his sons were carbon copies of their broodmare sires, so they are an incredibly diverse lot.

I don’t think they’ve released the 2019 list yet, but here’s the 2018 list from the Grayson Jockey Club Research Foundation ranking durability of sires of active runners by lifetime starts and percentage of starters:


As you can see, the lifetime starts list top 3 includes a Mr. P son, an UBS son, and a SC son. The percentage of starters list has their names peppered throughout as well. Every horse is an individual, but nothing on paper says this horse is going to be unsound for dressage. You have to evaluate that on a case by case basis.

With an unraced TB, nurture is going to play the biggest role in terms of turning him into a suitable dressage partner, temperament wise!


My mare’s paternal grandsire is SC. She is out of a Pleasant Colony mare. She is SUPER sweet, not a mean bone in her body.

Almost every other person I’ve met with a SC grandoffspring has said the same - varying amounts of very nice temperaments.

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That pedigree wouldn’t turn me off if I liked the colt/gelding that was standing in front of me. Fwiw, we had a mare by Forestry and a mare by Storm Bird (Storm Cat’s sire–known to be a fire breathing dragon) both of whom had wonderful temperaments. So problems aren’t necessarily a given.

With regard to soundness issues, Storm Cat was known to pass along offset knees. That should be easy enough to check on the yearling you’re looking at. His sire, Right Rigger, looks very attractive in his picture. I wouldn’t turn away a son of his just based on pedigree.

Back in the day when I was breeding Thoroughbreds and active in our local TB organization and training at the track, working the sales, the Mr. P’s were looked at as a crap shoot because of his crooked front leg. His babies were really fast and got to the track early as 2 year olds, but many broke down. You would struggle to find a son or daughter that it wasn’t passed to - which is why I steered clear as a sporthorse breeder. Considering the amount of mares bred because of his popularity, I’m sure many did well and stayed sound. Conquistador Cielo won the Belmont - which was extraordinary considering Mr. P’s progeny mostly were lucky to get a mile. Fappiano was another that sired some good sport horses. All in all, you can only look at the horse in front of you since he is a gelding, but Mr. P had a high incidence of breakdowns.


People put entirely too much stock into horses way to far back in the pedigree to make a difference. If you like the horse, buy the horse and don’t worry about the pedigree so much.


Would you say they broke down because of genetic unsoundness issues, or because their precociousness got them into too much work too early? In other words - is there anything out there showing that Mr Ps who were started older, or slower, fared better?


Fwiw, if you look at the 2019 Grayson-Jockey Club’s stats for stallion durability, 7 of the top 20 stallions were sired by Mr. P, or were sons or grandsons of his.



I have a forty niner grandson that is 22 now and never been unsound. Not even an abcess. Straight front legs.

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You can take it a step farther and say that 7 of the top 10 sires by average lifetime starts have at least one cross to Mr. P through sire or dam.

Langfuhr, Disco Rico, and D’Wildcat are the only 3 with no Mr. P blood in the top 10.

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You can take it a step farther and say that 7 of the top 10 sires by average lifetime starts have at least one cross to Mr. P through sire or dam.

Langfuhr, Disco Rico, and D’Wildcat are the only 3 with no Mr. P blood in the top 10.

I like the SC temperament. I’ll agree with @Texarkana that he (SC) and direct progeny could be sensitive, but in a good way (IMHO). I believe part of what has fueled the negativity about SC temperaments is that he quickly proliferated available TBs after-race market, and many of the homes his offspring went to were not always knowledgeable or educated, and for many of them, they were first time OTTB owners – they would look casually at their horse’s pedigree and the only name they would recognize was SC, so that’s where they blamed their issues rather than looking critically at their own management or riding.

Personally, I look for SC - he has shown he is consistently improving the movement in the modern TB most notably through his sons/grandsons - Freud, Frost Giant, GC, Stonesider, Johannesburg, Hennessey, Black Minnaloushe, Scat Daddy – are all varying in type to some degree but all are consistently passing on their movement. I think it comes from South Ocean and Terlingua, personally, but that is just a guess.

SC sired catty, classy horses. What is funny to me is that he was shrimpy, but some of his offspring have been humongous (17h, 18h) - the mare certainly came into play sometimes there . SCs can jump. This horse has one of my favorite SC sons (Hennessy) paired with another one of my favorites, Forestry. I’ve really liked the Hennessy horses I have met, he also combines a known mareline for UL eventing talent and it is a shame we lost him so young. Forestry just seems to sire all around good natured horses, with a little of the SC chrome and a lot of the heart.

Nothing wrong with Mr P in a pedigree, as Texarkana already covered, his strongest trait was letting the mare come through while adding a dose of speed. He is a horse you can very reliably linebreed to and does not seem to cause hidden issues to come to the forefront - which can’t be said for some other modern sires being linebred to (such as Seattle Slew). Regarding Mr P and breakdown - like UBS, he sired precocious youngsters that were fast and it was and is very easy to push them too far when they show that much speed and talent.

Lots of Tom Rolfe, Bolero, Menow, Mahmoud, Bold Ruler linebred in this pedigree. Many focus on the sireline of SC because it is more quantifiable in terms of racing, but SC’s damline was impeccable for sport. When you have SC you get Spy Song, who is an excellent line for jumping. Crimson Saint (mare) is not talked about too often but when she is brought up it is usually to point out she was an incredible dam and, came from a very strong family for sport. Many people liked Bolero (her damsire) for the long format. Bolero came from the Rock Sand sire line, Bolero being a very valuable name to see as he was sex-balanced linebred to Rock Sand top + bottom, great line for eventers.

P.S – I don’t necessarily think people put too much stock in pedigree for TBs. The thing about race-bred TBs is they are incredibly homologous; there is not always much diversity in bloodlines or type, especially if you are limited to a specific location. It’s not like warmblood registries where you can cross horses of varied descent and get genetic goulash in terms of what shows up ‘phenotypically’. With TBs, it’s very hard not to linebreed, and all that linebreeding brings ancestor traits to the forefront, over and over again… Meaning you can usually look at a TB’s page and pretty consistently guess what the horse is like before seeing it. Not saying it’s always a guarantee, but if you have a good enough handle on the sires in this industry in particular, it’s usually a fair guess.


@beowulf , you should really start charging tuition for your pedigree university lectures!


Personally, I’d pass on that many Storm Cat crosses in a yearling when it can be difficult to evaluate temperament. But, I have an SC grandson that is OCD, super sensitive, high energy, unpredictable and occasionally aggressive, so I’m feeling a bit burned out.

On the plus side he is a phenomenal mover, expressive and he is a blast to ride, so light and powerful, hilarious personality and tons of heart. He’s turned into a great fox hunter, and would have been a great dressage horse, but he doesn’t make anything easy. When everything is dialed in just right (nutrition, turnout, handling, weather, phase of the moon (j/k… maybe)) he’s perfect. When it’s not, he is a dangerous mess.

Polar opposite of my other OTTB who regularly packs my 5 year old daughter on trail rides and is a blissfully normal horse who reacts to things in a normal healthy-brained horse way.

Why a yearling? There so much time and training to be done and so many beautiful TBs with the slows ready to step right into the arena and get to work.

Maybe it was another horse entirely that he inherited his brain from or just a genetic fluke, but I’ve heard it mentioned many times how notoriously difficult his offspring were that I’d have to be much more assured of a good mind before I’d buy another SC.


But what’s the rest of the pedigree? At the granddson level, you’ve brought in 3 other pedigrees with a LOT of other horses behind them. It doesn’t seem fair to blame SC for this one’s temperament.



I’d love to know more about what other traits his ancestors contributed. Storm Cat may only be 1/4 but it was my understanding that he was also so valuable as a sire for his incredible prepotency.

It makes sense that the unique temperament SC produced while difficult also were a large part of their success. Google “Al Amir Saratoga” and there is a trio of photos of this horse surging ahead for a win with that attitude on full display. He doesn’t know when to quit and retired after a bowed tendon reinjured.




The Unbridled Song would worry me more than the Storm Cat but neither would worry me enough to turn the horse down if I liked what I saw in person.


Thanks to all for adding the discussion, I learned a lot about horses in his pedigree as well as TB’s in general.

I went and saw him this week and feel in love! He is the sweetest boy, butt high but he has a lovely neck set and straight legs. Floaty trot, happy, bouncy canter and a very nice walk. I am having him vetted on Tuesday :slight_smile:

Why a yearling you ask…well he was close by (I wasn’t planning on buying a TB at the moment), the owner is a dressage trainer who bought the mare (while she was in foal so this guy was an “added bonus” ) to breed to her warmblood stallion. The mare is… STUNNING! Big, beautiful copper penny chestnut… and she can move! If he ends up half as nice as her (and I think he will, current owner wouldn’t sell him if she didn’t have her own group of horses to ride) then I will be happy. Plus I get something to work with for two years which I like. I didn’t want to have to un-do any track training or even just bad training :frowning: I am tired of vet bills from previous horses (mostly warmbloods…sigh) plus I have always said if you can find a good TB then heaven awaits… :slight_smile:

So fingers crossed he passes and I can start working with him next week.

Thanks again for all of the knowledge passed down. Someone needs to record all this and make an easily searchable database.