Guide to Reading Pedigrees
website offers complex pedigree reports and knowing how to
read them and understanding what everything means in a pedigree
can really help you out. If you scroll to the bottom of this
page, you'll find the pedigree for Kentucky Derby winner REAL
QUIET. We'll be using this pedigree as an example so you can
occurs in a pedigree when the same horse appears twice through
different offspring. Real Quiet's pedigree has a fair amount
of inbreeding in it. The Pedigree Database will show inbred
horses by placing a colored bar to the right of names inside
the pedigree. Notice in Real Quiet's pedigree below that there
are colored bars next to Dr. Fager, Raise a Native, Cequillo,
and Rough'n Tumble. The bars are color coded so that you can
quickly find matching sets of horses. All of these horses
appear more than once in the pedigree through different offspring,
notice that Aspidistra also appears more than once in the
pedigree, yet she doesn't have a colored bar next to her name.
This is because she only appears through her son Dr. Fager
and no other horses.
horses that appear in both the dam and sire side of the pedigree
are referred to as cross duplicates. In Real Quiet's pedigree,
Raise a Native appears twice, once in Quiet American's pedigree
and once in Really Blue's pedigree. Dr. Fager on the other
hand only appears in Quiet American's pedigree and thus he
isn't a cross duplicate.
there are three types of siblings that are generally noted.
Full siblings (full brothers/sisters that share the same sire
& dam). 3/4 siblings (horses that share 3 out of 4 grandparents).
In Real Quiet's pedigree, Dumure and Killaloe are 3/4 siblings
sharing Rough'n Tumble, Aspidistra, and Cequillo. Half siblings
are those that either share two grandparents or have the same
dam. In Real Quiet's pedigree, Quiet Charm and Grand Splendor
share the same dam and are thus considered half siblings.
Note that horses that share the same sire are not generally
considered half siblings. In the pedigree database, the relationships
will be noted by color coded dotted, dashed, and solid lines
below a horse's name. A solid line will highlight full siblings,
a dashed line (like the green one below Demure's name) shows
3/4 siblings. Dotted lines like the one below Quiet Charm
show half siblings.
pedigree database, horses that have either won a grade I race
or the equivalent of a grade I race (before the grading system
came out) are always noted in bold text. Generally speaking,
the more Grade I winners/champions in a pedigree, the better
bred a horse is, especially when they show up in the dam's
side of the pedigree. Note that most sires today have had
fairly succesful racing careers and are often Grade I winners.
It's not uncommon to see a good sire in a pedigree, but it's
a lot less common to find mares who have done well.
in the database will show up with a career racing record and
earnings next to their names. For instance Really Blue has
the following numbers under her name. "21-3-5-1 $31,920".
This means that she raced 21 times in her career, won 3 races,
finished second 5 times and third 1 time. During her career,
she earned $31,920 in earnings. Horses that haven't raced
may show up with "Unraced" under their name.
and Dosage Certain sires in a pedigree may show up with
letters in brackets after their year of birth. Fappiano is
an example below "[IC]". These letters signify the Fappiano
is a chef-de-race horse and they are used to calculate the
dosage numbers above the pedigree "DP = 14-12-12-0-0 (38)
DI = 5.33 CD = 1.05". Chef-de-race horses on this site are
designated by Steve Roman and more information about dosage
and how to use it as a breeding tool can be found at http://www.chef-de-race.com/.
Strength Values (GSV)
Strength Values are another system to evaluated a horse's
pedigree and try to quantify the pedigree. Below Believe It's
name, you'll see a number in braces "(54.30)", this is Believe
It's Grasp Rating. Above the pedigree, you'll see the GSV
number "GSV = 71.10". GSV ratings and Grasp numbers were developed
by George William Smith and
you can find out more information about using these numbers
at his Understanding
the GSV page.
Parker is a pedigree researcher who has spent lots of time
studying famous mares. She's comes out with a list of the
500 or so most influential mares of the last century. These
Reine De Course (Queens of The Turf) mares are highlighted
in the pedigree with a green star. For instance Gay Hostess
is a Reine De Course mare. If you are serious about pedigrees,
check out her site
for some good articles and also some great books about famous
photos and extra information for a great number of horses
in the database. These will be noted in the pedigree with
small icons. The pedigree below isn't a working pedigree,
but on the site, you can run your mouse over these icons to
get photos or additional information for the horse in question.
Tail Female and Family Numbers The Tail Female pedigree
is one that goes from dam to dam. So Real Quiet's Tail female
pedigree includes Really Blue, Meadow Blue, Gay Hostess, Your
Hostess, Boudoir,... etc. On the right side of the pedigree,
you'll notice a column of numbers and letters that looks something
like 5-f, 8-f, etc. These are female family numbers and trace
the tail female pedigrees back to certain taproot mares. For
more information on female family numbers, we suggest you
take a look at Elizabeth Ross's Bloodlines
site and also Thoroughbred