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Exciting Story

EXCITING STORY : The Maid of Masham/Hermit nick

Alfonso González © 2006

One of the most famous nicks of the end 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century was the Maid of Masham/Hermit one. The former belongs to family number nine and some of her most notable descendants are; Fair Play and his full brother Friar’s Rock, Cyllene, Bull Lea, Asterus, Prince Chevalier, Honeway and so on. All of these carry the Maid of Masham/Hermit cross.

Probably the most influential line of the mare is the one that reaches the above mentioned full brothers. Fair Play is the sire of the superclass horse and sire Man O War. When one analyzes this pedigree, easily find two presences of Hermit in the five first generations.

Let me jump to 1959 where a mare Dame Fritchie was born. Dame Fritchie traces back to Maid of Masham through the Toxopholite mare. It is the same tail female line as the one of Bull Lea, Easton, Asterus and Prince Chevalier. Dame Frichie’s tail female line is such that there are many generations that give no astonishing racehorse. If one studies her dam and grandam, he will find that there is little of high class in there.

Dame Frichtie won 3 of 37 starts and earned a bit more than $17,000. Being a daughter of Count of Honor, she has a close inbreeding to Bull Dog (3Fx2f) and to Man O’ War (4Hx4m). As I have written before, Man O War is an example of the Maid of Masham/Hermit cross. The first time I studied the descendants of Dame Fritchie, I found out that in most of the black type winners two names where repeated; Hail to Reason and In Reality. The first explanation I gave to this resurrection of the female line was the inbreeding to Plucky Liege and Man O’ War. Hail to Reason provides two daughters of the Bull Dogs’ brother and half brother, Sir Gallahad and Admiral Drake plus two daughters of Big Red close in his pedigree. In Reality provides one daughter of Bull Dog and two mail lines of Man O War. This was a no sufficiently deep study.

If one studies the mare Appealing Story, by Valid Appeal and Charming Story, by Hail to Reason and Dame Fritchie, one finds more of the secrets of this multiple black type strain. In this mare, those previous ancestors found in In Reality and Hail to Reason are present, but it is the time to get to the Maid of Masham/Hermit cross. In Reality is inbreed 3x3 to War Relic through a son a Daughter and carries an extra line of Fair Play through Display. War Relic is the key horse in the mating, as it is inbreed 3x3 to Fairy Gold, and so, 2x2 to Fair Play and Friar’s Rock!

Hail to Reason has two female presences of Man O War as said before and also 4 presences of Sundridge in the 6th and 7th generation. Sundridge sire, Amphion, has Hermit as his damsire. Also in these generations, we find four presences of Cyllene through Polymelus and Maid of the Mist. Cyllene traces back to Maid of Masham. Hail to Reason’s sire, Turn To descends from the strong female line of Marchetta. This mare is inbreed 3Fx3m to Hermit.

Appealing Story is by Valid Appeal, a son of In Reality that gives another daughter of Sir Gallahad and one daughter of Fair Play in the first seven generations. Appealing Story was unraced, but the development of her pedigree was very clever, so one cannot get surprised by her progeny. Probably, her best son was the Canadian two year old champion Exciting Story that also won the Metropolitan Handicap (Gr1). His sire Diablo descends from Hail To Reason, so in this cross we find a son and a daughter of this important horse. In his tail female line, one finds Plucky Roman which is inbreed to Sir Gallahad through two sons. One important horse in Diablo is Eight Thirty. His grandsire is Friar Rock and his grandam is by Fair Play, both descendants of Maid of Masham. His sire, Pilate has four presences of Hermit in the first seven generations.

It can be said that Exciting Story has been bred in the Maid of Masham/Hermit Cross. Seeking the first twelve generations we find more than 70 presences of descendants of Maid Of Masham and more than 100 of Hermit.

Other black types of Appealing Story are:

-         Strong Memory (End Sweep)

-         Sweeping Story (End Sweep)

-         Diablos Story (Diablo)

There are other black type descendants of Dame Fritchie such a Dollar Bill, Optimistic Gall, Feasibility Study, Big Earl, Bauhauser, Cybele, Battes Motel, Hatim, Rest your Case... 

What I find very interesting about these black type horses is that most of them are rare eoccurences in their mares progeny, and it could be said that perhaps Appealing Story is the most consistent mare of this line. It is also, in my opinion, the most cleverly bred.