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Genetics breakthrough has backing of Bolger

SCIENTISTS in Ireland are claiming a "revolutionary" genetic breakthrough thatthey believe could transform the way racehorses are bred.

It could also help owners and trainers more quickly establish their horse's optimum racing distance, according to Dr Emmeline Hill, the creator of the Equinome Speed Gene Test.

Trainer Jim Bolger

Jim Bolger: joint venture with Hill

  PICTURE: Mark Cranham  

Derby winning trainer Jim Bolger, who has formed a company with Dr Hill to promote the test, last night described the development as "without doubt the most important thing that has happened to breeding since it begun over 300 years ago."

The key to her findings, which is based on samples taken from 179 Group race and Listed winners since 2004, is the discovery of a gene that influences a horse's speed.

It means that a potential racehorse could be tested to establish whether its particular speed gene characteristic would best identify it as a sprinter, middle-distance horse or stayer.

Dr Hill, a grand daughter of Dawn Run's owner Charmian Hill, said: "This information could help a breeder decide which stallions to use, as, coupled with test results from the mare, you will know the probability of the foal falling into each one of those three categories."

Read more in today's Racing Post




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