Holy Vows, also known as Derby
September 29, 2011 6 Comments
Well, do I have some news for you. We’ve deciphered Derby’s tattoo, and we now know “who” he is — Holy Vows, sired by Holy Bull, out of a mare named Final Vows, by Halo.
And, I learned something pretty astounding – Derby was bred before he was gelded, and he has at least two foals on the ground. I found this picture on the web of him, with his filly, last night. I can’t believe this horse was ever a breeding stallion – he is the polar opposite of studdy, and can walk by a mare without batting an eye (or curling his nose.)
As far as Thoroughbred pedigrees go, this is a good one. These are quality horses that have proven themselves in athletic endeavors. Derby wasn’t successful as a racehorse – in fact, he was downright pitiful, running thrice finishing off the board in all starts and dead last in two of them – but he’s got nice conformation and movement – which his more illustrious parents transmitted. He gets his sturdy build (and his cute face) from his daddy, champion and Horse of the Year, Holy Bull, as you can see to the right:
Derby’s dam, Final Vows, was a good producer, and among her progeny she foaled graded stakes winner Mighty Magee, Derby’s half brother. Her sire was Halo, who died in 2000 and was one of racing’s most prepotent sires, siring super-stallion, champion and classic winner Sunday Silence, Kentucky Derby winner Sunny’s Halo, champions Devil’s Bag and Glorious Song, and a slew of other top race horses including Jolie’s Halo, Lively One and Saint Ballado.
It’s a good thing Halo was a good sire, because he was also a miserable creature with an evil temper and a reputation for savaging his handlers. Needless to say, Derby had his back turned when the genetics were being handed out – he didn’t inherit any of Halo’s brilliance, but he certainly didn’t get that temper, either.
Generally speaking, Thoroughbred bloodlines mean little for dressage. But to me, each Thoroughbred is a living piece of history. I followed Holy Bull’s triumphs avidly, and am well acquainted with Halo, his story and his progeny. It’s fun knowing my boy has these illustrious ties, even if it means nothing.