The Five-Cross Files

Female families… patterns of inbreeding… sire line nicks… what really influences the strength of a Thoroughbred pedigree? How do conformation and class factor in? The Five-Cross Files explores bloodlines old and new, analyzes Thoroughbred pedigrees, tests breeding tools, and simplifies the science (and art) of successful Thoroughbred breeding.

February 2008 - Posts

Too Much Winter

Don't get me wrong, I don't dislike winter. I grew up in the Northeast and Lexington is mild in comparison. And the horses like the cold much better than the sweaty mess of July or August in the Bluegrass. But this time of year brings other annoyances and frustrations, as well. My horses tell me when I've gone a little shy on the hay or beet pulp. They do so by chewing... everything. It's bad enough when they gnaw on the fence boards, but it's dire when they whittle the posts down to toothpicks or when they go after the lap boards on the barn. Of course, hay isn't cheap -- this year, it's not even easy to find -- and there's only so much beet pulp a horse is going to want to eat. ... Read More

Bumping Up Against Deadline

Kudos to The Jockey Club for a site that is user-friendly and well-planned. I've used Interactive Registration the last few years, and it just keeps improving. The main page includes a useful overview of the registration process, and helpful information (such as tips on photographing the foals and describing body markings and colors). But the experience just kept improving. The GUI for denoting face and body markings was not clunky like might be expected; instead, it was a nice graphic with easy-to-use controls. The photo upload was a snap. The records were set up to require the least amount of typing necessary (one click makes the "owner" information the same as "breeder," for example, instead of rekeying names, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers). And each step along the way, I saw a note letting me know what step I was working on and how many steps remained. When I was finished, I received a nice report summarizing the information I'd provided, to keep in my records.... Read More

Revelations of the Catalog Page, part I

It's a couple of weeks before your favorite sale, and the catalog has just arrived in your mailbox. You sit down to take a first look through the book, flipping open to the first hip. Quick: What jumps out? Where did your eyes immediately focus? For most of us, the answer reveals a lot about our real passions in the Thoroughbred industry. ... Read More

Recent Posts


  • Pedigree Newsletter:
    The Five-Cross Files will be featured in a new Pedigree Analysis newsletter from To sign up for this free weekly email -- or any other newsletters from The Blood-Horse -- just click here.

Recommended Reading

More Blogs