The Thoroughbred is a breed of horse whose bloodlines can be traced back to one of three foundation sires: the Byerly Turk, The Darley Arabian and the Godolphin Arabian who were brought to England in the 17 th century. Through selective breeding of the best mares to the best stallions for more than 300 years, this breed combines the most important aspects in the sport of horse racing: intelligence, strength, stamina, speed and a competitive spirit.
This means that your horse has been DNA blood-typed to verify parentage and has a certificate to prove it is officially a Thoroughbred.
There are approximately 1,300 Thoroughbreds registered each year as Canadian-bred horses. In Ontario , there are an average of 800 registered annually.
Every Thoroughbred’s birthday is January 1 st . Therefore if you had a foal born on June 1 st, your horse would be one year old on January of that year. The reason for this is in order to standardize ages for racing purposes.
Bay is the term to describe the colour of a horse that varies from a yellow-tan to a bright auburn with black “points” such as mane, tail and lower legs. Dark Bay is a brown coat colour with areas of tan on the flanks and muzzle, with the mane, tail and legs being traditionally black. Brown ranges from brown to a dark brown and can be difficult to separate from black or dark bay. Black, which is very rare in Thoroughbreds, is determined by the entire coat being black, including the muzzle, the flanks, the mane, tail and legs. Horses of this colour frequently carry a very dark brown cast. Chestnut varies from a dark liver to a reddish gold, copper or golden yellow. Roan is a mixture of red and white hairs, and the mane, tail and legs maybe black, chestnut or roan. Grey is made up of a mixture of black and white hairs, and the mane, tail and legs can be either grey or black. White is referred to a horse with absolutely no colour in its coat. This colour is also very rare in Thoroughbreds, making up less than one percent of the horse population.
A pedigree is made up of a horse’s linage or family tree in descending order with its paternal ancestors, such as the sire/father listed at the top, and its maternal ancestors, such as the dam/mother listed at the bottom.
You can obtain information on a registered Thoroughbred through the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (CTHS) with solely its registered name or through searching on the horse’s tattoo number. Every Thoroughbred that has raced must be tattooed for identification purposes. The tattoo is always placed on the inside upper lip of the horse. This tattoo number represents its year of birth and its registration number.
It is difficult to give a set amount on the cost of a Thoroughbred but at the 2017 Canadian Premier Yearling Sale the average horse sold for $17,794 and the highest price a yearling has sold for in Ontario was $3.7 million in 1985. There are many avenues through which a Thoroughbred horse can be purchased, such as private sales, official auction sales and claiming races with prices ranging from a few hundred dollars and up.
Everyone is invited to attend a CTHS Sale and there is no admission fee. However, one must register before the Sale should he/she wish to bid on a horse. Information such as known parentage, history and racing information is provided in the form of a Sales catalogue and is available a month prior to the sale.
A person who advises and/or represents the buyer or seller of a Thoroughbred horse at public auction or private sale.
Individual numbers are given to horses at auction (attached to their hip) for identification and are referenced as such in the sale catalogue.
Reserve Not Attained refers to a horse entered into an auction that did not reach a minimum (reserve) price set by the consignor and so was retained by the consignor. This is also referred to as “buy-back.”
Confirmation is determined by the evaluation of the physical appearance of the horse made up by the distribution of muscle, bone and body tissue coupled with its balance, intelligence and athleticism.
A Thoroughbred begins its racing career at the age of two if it has reached its point of physical fitness. Quite a few racehorses only start as three year olds.
This term refers to either a horse or rider after winning the first race of their career.
A Thoroughbred after being weaned until he/she is deemed a yearling on New Year’s Day following his/her foaling.
A Thoroughbred between the first New Year’s Day after being foaled and the following Jan. 1 st.
A complete/ungelded male up to and including age four.
A female horse up to and including age four.
A filly or mare that has been bred or has produced foals.
These are horses born of the same dam but by different sires.
Refers to a mare “booked to” a stallion for breeding in a given year. If a stallion receives the maximum number of mares allowed by the farm manager, he is said to have a “full book.”
In order for a foal to be registered with The Jockey Club and CTHS, it must have been conceived only through live cover breeding. Artificial insemination is not accepted in the Thoroughbred industry.
The Sovereign Awards are presented annually to honour the champions of Thoroughbred racing and outstanding members within the Canadian racing industry.
This is presented annually by the CTHS to an individual who makes a lifetime contribution to the Thoroughbred horse industry within Ontario.
The Jockey Club is the official ruling body of Thoroughbred racing and is the breed registry for all Thoroughbred horses in North America.