I am always impressed by those breeders who take a chance on "obscure" bloodlines and are rewarded with success.
I'm being a bit harsh by saying "obscure". I mean "unfashionable". It has a bit of a stigma about it that some would feel means "poor or bad".
Generally that is far from the case. All it really means is someone has been brave enough to put together a pedigree using a stud dog that may not appear commercial.
I often get inquiries about proposed matings and generally the first thought is "I want to be able to sell the pups".
By that the broodbitch owner means I only want to go to a very commercial stud dog.
While the commercial stud dogs are often the best, they may not necessarily be the one most suitable for every broodbitch.
Which brings me to Peggy May (Royal Riddle-Trinity County by Big Daddy Cool).
Jason Thompson trains her and what a brilliant bitch she is, multiple city winner, Group 1 Australian Cup finalist and recently winner of the Group 2 Bendigo Cup over 425m beating 2011 Australian greyhound of the year Dyna Tron.
She was the final leg of a memorable winning treble over a couple of days for Jason, a few days he most likely won't forget for a while. Nor will Seona.
Peggy May is a replica of champion Betty's Angel and her great littermates Leprechaun Pace, Miss Mini Mouse and Global Warming.
Have you gone mad? I can hear you all asking. How can Peggy May be a replica of Betty's Angel who is by Brett Lee-Leprechaun Yap?
Oh, but she is!
Those who "look into a pedigree" will spot the similarities instantly.
So let's find them.
Betty's Angel is a daughter of Brett Lee.
Peggy May has Brett Lee's half brother Big Daddy Cool as the sire of her mother Trinity County.
Betty's Angel's third dam is National Dingaan (Worth Doing-National Lass).
Trace the damline of Peggy May's sire Royal Riddle and we come to a dog called Little Denver the sire of Royal Riddle's second dam Princess Sharlee.
He is the same Little Denver who is a litter brother to National Dingaan.
Betty's Angel has as her damsire the former star sprinter Hotshot.
Peggy May's second dam On This Fold is by Hotshot.
(We have seen already that Hotshot and National Dingaan both trace directly to the strong broodbitch Sancerie.)
Betty's Angel is bred on a strong cross of Bowetzel and his half sister Shining Light.
Peggy May has a cross of Centrefire and her full brother Shining Chariot (out of Shining Light). Big Daddy Cool, of course, also carries Bowetzel to reinforce this famous female family.
So you see, what might not appear to be a similar pedigree, a comparison of Betty's Angel and Peggy May shows this pair have many, many common ancestors.
Peggy May has a few added bonuses.
Royal Riddle is a grandson of Light Of Fire. Big Daddy Cool's dam Sobbing Sal is bred on a similar cross. Both are by New Tears and out of a daughter of Chariot Supreme. Light Of Fire has Shining Light as his second dam. Sobbing Sal has Bowetzel (Shining Light's half brother) as the sire of her second dam.
And then we come to the connection between Bearability (damsire of Royal Riddle) and Big Daddy Cool (the damsire of Peggy May).
Bearability is by Credibility from a daughter of New Tears.
Big Daddy Cool has Credibility as his grandsire and is out of a New Tears bitch.
One aspect of Peggy May I found particularly interesting. She is the same white and black colour as her damsire Big Daddy Cool.
Peggy May is from a family that continues to produce smart gallopers … but also plenty that are pretty ordinary.
Her dam Trinity County won just three races at Lithgow all over 414m.
But she was a litter sister to Group 1 WA Galaxy winner Western Land and a dog called Fourteen Carot winner of the Bathurst Cup, Potts Park Cup and Nowra City Cup.
This is also the family of sprint machines Puzzle Prize and Knockabout Wok, as well as Sir Prize who could have been anything a year ago but broke down.
Only last Thursday night at Albion Park, Surfin' Steffi (Surf Lorian-Corolla) chased home Tonneli Bale in the Group 3 Big Dog Cup. She too is from this family.
There is a very nice race bitch in Sydney called Monamour who is also from this family.
Peggy May's sire Royal Riddle was a star stayer during his race career winning 28 and being placed in 20 of his 77 starts.
He was NSW greyhound of the year in 2006 after winning the Summer Cup and making a host of Group races around the country.
He was always going to struggle at stud … broodbitch owners don't like using stayers for some crazy reason.
He was the strength that Peggy May's female family needed to produce a 520m runner.
So when Peggy May retires to stud, what lines would help her succeed?
Considering she is almost a genetic sister to Betty's Angel, Miss Mini Mouse and Leprechaun Pace, obviously how they have been bred and succeeded or failed is an obvious start.
Therein lies an enigma.
Leprechaun Yap, dam of Bettys and her sisters, went to Spiral Nikita and produced Group dogs Talks Cheap and Bo Frazier.
Their sister Glamorous (to Brett Lee) produced Magic Sprite, Apache Leap, Leprechaun Daisy and Leprechaun Chloe.
Leprechaun Pace went to Spiral Nikita and has produced the sensational Oaks Road winner of the Group 1 Perth Cup who last week staged a memorable performance to win the Group 2 Maitland Gold Cup. He won when he shouldn't have.
But when Bettys went to Spiral Nikita the best she could do was Ed Pacino a smart city winner but certainly no Oaks Road or Things Missing.
Personally I never believed Bettys deserved an outcross. She was absolutely ideal for Bombastic Shiraz.
Peggy May is now crying out for Brett Lee somewhere in the stud dog she mates.
Have a look at a mating between Magic Sprite-Peggy May. That might interest a few. It will bring in very similarly bred sire and dam.
Cosmic Rumble could also be an option, and Lochinvar Marlow another.
It is such a shame Bombastic Shiraz won't be around for her though. Now that would have been something!