As breeders, our goal is to infuse our offspring with as much “ability” as possible. In Breeding Algo 1.0, the only ability a ZED horse passed was Base Ability. Think of this as a normalized mean speed. Distance preference adds/subtracts speed on either side of 1600m (the original mid-distance before 2400 and 2600 were later added) so isolating BA from DP was our original goal. This is easier said than done and we’ve gone to great lengths to not only build the models for normalized mean speed, but extensive logic to use the difference between long and short distance ability to approximate BA when that’s all we have.
Easy enough. But that all changed when Breeding Algo 2.0 was released in Mid-March 2022. A ZED horse has three main racing traits and all three are now “passed” in the new breeding algo: variance, distance preference, and base ability. We also know ancestors genes are passed, and while we have an idea of how often that happens, we’re still waiting on more data to come in.
The Zedge was originally created for me:) With Base Ability the only trait passed and nowhere that actually tried to quantify it, I wanted a tool that would do so, and let me filter and sort horses in the stud barn and those for sale on OS or Hawku (only Hawku now, of course!).
With the Algo change, the tool has taken on new life and I believe is the most essential tool in ZED for making breeding decisions (both purchasing and stud choices). Today, we’re not only quantifying all three racing traits, we’re constantly adding tools/data to help you dive even deeper into these horses and make the best decisions for your stable.
In the next section, we’ll break down our current understanding of Algo 2.0 and the most recent ways we’re quantifying these metrics for you. We’re super psyched you’re here checking us out, and always around Discord to clarify further!
Major thanks to cryptog and Hawku for allowing us to utilize their data to make this possible.
Next: Racing Traits Metrics
If we’ve peaked your interest, or you just want to dive deeper into the theories and principles upon which this tool is built, we recommend checking out this Zed Insights interview with Ceej from XYZed. Best 90 minutes on base ability on the interwebs. Update: I would just clarify that finish patterns are a great way of estimating BA when contextualized for competition, AND you don’t have an easy way to normalize times. Most tool providers are normalizing times in one manner or another these days, including us (we really always have). The principles in this are still great!
For more base ability talk, and a whole lot of other data driven ZED discussion, check out the XYZed Youtube channel.
If you have any questions about the data or the tool, please join The Zedge discord and/or hunt me down @Shady Lane | The Zedge#9121