Ascot Gold Cup
The Gold Cup is a Group 1 flat horse race in Great Britain open to horses aged four years or older. It is run at Ascot over a distance of 2 miles 3 furlongs and 210 yards, it is scheduled to take place each year in June, it is Britain's most prestigious event for "stayers" – horses which specialise in racing over long distances. It is traditionally held on the third day of the Royal Ascot meeting, known colloquially as Ladies' Day. Contrary to popular belief the actual title of the race does not include the word "Ascot"; the event was established in 1807, it was open to horses aged three or older. The inaugural winner, Master Jackey, was awarded prize money of 100 guineas; the first race took place in the presence of King George Queen Charlotte. The 1844 running was attended by Nicholas I of Russia, making a state visit to England; that year's winner was unnamed at the time of his victory, but he was given the name "The Emperor" in honour of the visiting monarch. In return Nicholas offered a new trophy for the race — the "Emperor's Plate" — and this became the title of the event for a short period.
Its original name was restored during the Crimean War. The Gold Cup is the first leg of Britain's Stayers' Triple Crown, followed by the Goodwood Cup and the Doncaster Cup; the last horse to win all three races in the same year was Double Trigger in 1995. The Gold Cup is one of three perpetual trophies at the Royal Ascot meeting, along with the Royal Hunt Cup and the Queen's Vase, which can be kept permanently by the winning owners. A number of horses have won it more than once, the most successful is Yeats, who recorded his fourth victory in 2009. A The race was abandoned in 1964 because of waterlogging b c Rock Roi finished first in 1971 and 1972, but he was disqualified both times d Royal Gait was first in 1988, but he was relegated to last place following a stewards' inquiry e The 2005 running took place at York The race was run at Newmarket during the wartime periods of 1917–18 and 1941–44. Horse racing in Great Britain List of British flat horse races Paris-Turf: "1978". "1979". "1980". "1981".
"1983". "1984". "1985". "1986". "1987". Racing Post: 1988, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 2018galopp-sieger.de – Ascot Gold Cup. horseracingintfed.com – International Federation of Horseracing Authorities – Gold Cup. pedigreequery.com – Ascot Gold Cup – Ascot. Tbheritage.com – Ascot Gold Cup. Abelson, Edward; the Breedon Book of Horse Racing Records. Breedon Books. Pp. 88–92. ISBN 1-873626-15-0. YouTube Race Video https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLfn5x2SD03q4TvYnBjgdsNth34if5VTOt
Bay is a hair coat color of horses, characterized by a brown body color with a black mane, ear edges, lower legs. Bay is one of the most common coat colors in many horse breeds; the black areas of a bay horse's hair coat are called "black points", without them, a horse cannot be considered a bay horse. Black points may sometimes be covered by white markings. Bay horses have dark skin, except under white markings -. Genetically, bay occurs when a horse carries both a black base coat; the addition of other genes creates many additional coat colors. While the basic concepts behind bay coloring are simple, the genes themselves and the mechanisms that cause shade variations within the bay family are quite complex and, at times, disputed; the genetics of dark shades of bay are still under study. A DNA test said to detect the seal brown allele was developed, but subsequently pulled from the market. Sooty genetics appear to darken some horses' bay coats, that genetic mechanism is yet to be understood. Bay horses range in color from a light copper red, to a rich red blood bay to a dark red or brown called dark bay, mahogany bay, black-bay, or brown.
The dark, brown shades of bay are referred to in other languages by words meaning "black-and-tan." Dark bays/browns may be so dark as to have nearly black coats, with brownish-red hairs visible only under the eyes, around the muzzle, behind the elbow, in front of the stifle. Dark bay should not be confused with "Liver" chestnut, a dark brown color, but a liver chestnut has a brown mane and legs, no black points; the pigment in a bay horse's coat, regardless of shade, is rich and saturated. This makes bays lustrous in the sun if properly cared for; some bay horses exhibit dappling, caused by textured, concentric rings within the coat. Dapples on a bay horse suggest good condition and care, though many well-cared for horses never dapple; the tendency to dapple may be, to some extent, genetic. Bays have a two-toned hair shaft, which, if shaved too may cause the horse to appear several shades lighter, a somewhat dull orange-gold like a dun. However, as the hair grows out, it will darken again to the proper shade.
This phenomenon is part of bay color genetics, but not seen in darker shades of bay because there is less red in the hair shaft. There are many terms that are used to describe particular qualities of a bay coat; some shade variations can be related to nutrition and grooming, but most appear to be caused by inherited factors not yet understood. The palest shades, which lack specific English terminology found in other languages, are called wild bays. Wild bays are true bays with pigmented reddish coat color and black manes and tails, but the black points only extend up to the pastern or fetlock. Wild bay is found in conjunction with a trait called "pangare" that produces pale color on the underbelly and soft areas, such as near the stifle and around the muzzle. Bay horses have black skin and dark eyes, except for the skin under markings, pink. Skin color can help an observer distinguish between a bay horse with white markings and a horse which resembles bay but is not; some breed registries use the term "brown" to describe dark bays.
However, "liver" chestnuts, horses with a red or brown mane and tail as well as a dark brownish body coat, are sometimes called "brown" in some colloquial contexts. Therefore, "brown" can be an ambiguous term for describing horse coat color, it is clearer to refer to dark-colored horses as dark bays or liver chestnuts. However, to further complicate matters, the genetics that lead to darker coat colors are under study, there exists more than one genetic mechanism that darkens the coat color. One is a theorized sooty gene; the other is a specific allele of Agouti linked to a certain type of dark bay, called seal brown. The seal brown horse has dark brown body and lighter areas around the eyes, the muzzle, flanks. A DNA test said to detect the seal brown allele was developed, but the test was never subjected to peer review and due to unreliable results was subsequently pulled from the market; some foals are born bay, but carry the dominant gene for graying, thus will turn gray as they mature until their hair coat is white.
Foals that are going to become gray must have one parent, gray. Some foals may be born with a few white hairs visible around the eyes and other fine-haired, thin-skinned areas, but others may not show signs of graying until they are several months old. Chestnuts, sometimes called "Sorrels," have a reddish body coat similar to a bay, but no black points, their legs and ear edges are the same color as the rest of their body and their manes and tails are the same shade as their body color or a few shades lighter. Black is confused with dark bays and liver chestnuts because some black horses "sunburn," that is, when kept out in the sun, they develop a bleached-out coat that looks brownish in the fine-haired areas around the flanks. However, a true black can be recognized by looking at the fine hairs around eyes; these hairs are always black on a black horse, but are reddish, brownish, or a light gold on a bay or chestnut. Traditionally, bay is considered to be one of the "hard" or "base" coat
Springfield was a successful English Thoroughbred racehorse that won 14 consecutive races and was a useful sire of the late 19th century. He was the grandsire of two English Triple Crown winners: Galtee More, exported to Russia, Germany and Rock Sand, exported to the U. S, he was a bay colt foaled in 1873 at Bushy Park Paddocks at Hampton Court. Springfield was sired by the St. Leger Stakes winner St. Albans, his dam was Queen Victoria’s Viridis by Marsyas, he was sold as a yearling and purchased by J. H. Houldsworth for 320 guineas. Springfield was line-bred to Sultan in the fifth generation of his pedigree. Springfield won his first start, the Prince of Wales's Plate at York and the following day won the six furlong Gimcrack Stakes. In October he had a victory in the four furlong Two Year Old Stakes at Newmarket. Following this Springfield finished second in the Criterion Stakes defeated by a head from Clanronald and another second in the Dewhurst Stakes to the future Epsom Derby winner Kisber, These were the only times that he was defeated during his racing career, Springfield was undefeated as a three-year-old, winning nine races, two of which were walk-overs.
The wins included the July Cup, Goodwood's Bagnor Stakes, the Bradgate Stakes at Doncaster. He won twice at Royal Ascot, taking the New Biennial Stakes. In 1877 he was again undefeated in his five starts, which included victories in the Queen's Stand Plate, the July Cup, his final race was the 1 1/4 mile Champion Stakes. Springfield finished his racing career with 19 starts, 17 wins and 2 seconds for earnings of £8,920. Springfield stood at Bushey Paddocks at Hampton Court for an initial fee of 100 guineas rising to 200 guineas. After the Royal Stud was dispersed Springfield was transferred to Houldsworth's Newmarket stud, his progeny included: Agave, dam of Galeottia (dam of Gay Laura, who produced Gay Crusader, winner of the English Triple Crown. Briar Root, won 1,000 Guineas Stakes, second dam of Prunus Morganette, a roarer, dam of Galtee More, Ard Patrick and Blairfinde Pastorella, dam of the unbeaten U. S. galloper Colin Ponza, winner of six races, dam of Positano, sire in Australia. Sainfoin, won Epsom Derby Stakes, sire of Triple Crown winner, Rock Sand Sierra, dam of Sundridge Speedwell, won Middle Park Stakes Sunshower, dam of Spartivento He died on 31 March 1898, age 25.
List of leading Thoroughbred racehorses
Bona Vista was a British Thoroughbred racehorse. As a two-year-old he won the Woodcote Stakes at Epsom Downs; as a three-year-old he won the Newmarket Biennial Stakes, before winning the 2000 Guineas Stakes by one and a half lengths. He was owned by Charles Day Rose. After retiring from racing Bona Vista became a successful stallion, siring Ascot Gold Cup winner Cyllene. Through his son Cyllene and grandson Polymelus, Bona Vista's sire line is the most dominant in Thoroughbred racehorses today. Bona Vista, sometimes spelled Bonavista, was a chestnut colt bred by Archibald Primrose, 5th Earl of Rosebery, foaled in 1889, he was sired by Champion Stakes winner Bend Or. After retiring from racing Bend Or became a successful stallion, his most successful son was Ormonde. He sired the champion sire Kendal and Eclipse Stakes winner Orbit. Bend Or was the leading broodmare sire in Great Britain and Ireland for two years. Bona Vista's dam was a daughter Macaroni, she won several races, including the Great Metropolitan Handicap, had foaled Derby and St Leger winner Sir Visto and Eclipse and Champion Stakes winner Velasquez before producing Bona Vista.
Charles Day Rose purchased Bona Vista as a yearling at Newmarket in 1890 for 1250 guineas. This was just above the reserve of 1200 guineas set by the Earl of Rosebery, who regretted selling the colt. Bona Vista was put into training with William Jarvis. Bona Vista made his first race start on 26 May 1891 in the Woodcote Stakes over six furlongs at Epsom Downs. Ridden by J. Woodburn, he started as the money favourite. With a quarter of a mile left to run the colt Rioter took the lead, but struggled. Bona Vista and Pilgrim's Progress overtook Rioter and Bona Vista won the race by a length from Pilgrim's Progress. Rioter finished in third place and El Diablo fourth. Bona Vista faced Pilgrim's Progress again at Royal Ascot in the New Stakes, he started the race as the evens favourite, but could only finish third, five lengths behind winner Goldfinch. Bona Vista's final start of the season came in the Chesterfield Stakes in July at Newmarket, he started as the second favourite, behind La Fleche, receiving seven pounds from Bona Vista.
La Fleche led the race with Bona Vista second. In the closing stages Bona Vista was overtaken by Lady Hermit, but neither could catch leader La Fleche, who won by two lengths from Lady Hermit. Bona Vista was three quarters of a length behind the runner-up in third place. Bona Vista started his three-year-old campaign in the Biennial Stakes, run over one mile at Newmarket, where he only faced three rivals. In the early stages Curio led the race from Platoon, the pair being clear of Bona Vista and Tanzmeister; the field remained in that order until they were into the second half of the race, when the four horses bunched up. The four raced right up to the finish line, with Bona Vista winning by a head from Tanzmeister and Curio a head behind Tanzmeister in third. After this narrow victory Bona Vista started the 2000 Guineas Stakes at the price of 10/1 and faced thirteen opponents. After the start St. Angelo went to the front, racing on the left hand side of the course, he led Galeopsis and Scarborough.
Bona Vista was leading the horses. Shortly after half-way St. Angelo was still leading from Galeopsis, with Bona Vista in third being followed by Sir Hugo, Goldfinch and El Diablo. Sir Hugo and Goldfinch soon faded and this left Curio behind the three leaders. Bona Vista took the lead with about one furlong left to run and under jockey W. Robinson he pulled away to win by one and a half lengths from St. Angelo. Half a length behind St. Angelo was Curio; these for were well clear of Goldfinch, who pulled up lame, led the rest of the field home. The 9/2 favourite El Diablo finished in eight place. On 1 June, Bona Vista returned to the place of Epsom Downs, for the Derby Stakes. La Fleche was the strong pre-race favourite, priced at 11/10. Rueil was second favourite at 100/9 Bona Vista at 100/8 and St. Damien at 100/7. In the early stages of the race Sir Hugo led the race, with Llanthony and Galeopsis prominent. By the time the field reached the mile post Thessalian led the race from St. Damien, with Bona Vista near the middle of the pack.
Bona Vista never finished back in eleventh place. The race was won by 40/1 outsider Sir Hugo. At Royal Ascot, Bona Vista competed in the Prince of Wales's Stakes. After the field had settled down after the start Watercress led the field, with Bona Vista not amongst the front runners. Bona Vista never finished in seventh place. Watercress won the race by one length from Tanzmeister. Bona Vista was withdrawn due to a ligament injury. Note: F = Furlongs, L = Lengths Bona Vista stood for at Hardwicke Stud in Berkshire for a fee of 25 guineas. In 1897 he was purchased for 15,000 guineas by Prince Louis Esterhazy to stand at stud in Hungary, where he was champion sire five times. Through his son Cyllene, Cyllene's son Polymelus, Bona Vista's sire line is the most dominant in Thoroughbred racehorses today. Bona Vista's most notable progeny were: Cyllene – won a number of races as a two-year-old, before winning the Newmarket Stakes and Jockey Club Stakes in 1898, his most important win came as a four-year-old.
Cyllene was a successful stallion, siring Derby winners Cicero, Minoru and Tagalie, along with the important sire Polymelus. Cyllene was champion sire in Britain twice. I
Horse breeding is reproduction in horses, the human-directed process of selective breeding of animals purebred horses of a given breed. Planned matings can be used to produce desired characteristics in domesticated horses. Furthermore, modern breeding management and technologies can increase the rate of conception, a healthy pregnancy, successful foaling; the male parent of a horse, a stallion, is known as the sire and the female parent, the mare, is called the dam. Both are genetically important, as each parent provides half of the genetic makeup of the ensuing offspring, called a foal. Contrary to popular misuse, "colt" refers to a young male horse only. Though many horse owners may breed a family mare to a local stallion in order to produce a companion animal, most professional breeders use selective breeding to produce individuals of a given phenotype, or breed. Alternatively, a breeder could, using individuals of differing phenotypes, create a new breed with specific characteristics. A horse is "bred".
Thus a colt conceived in England but foaled in the United States is regarded as being bred in the US. In some cases, most notably in the Thoroughbred breeding industry, American- and Canadian-bred horses may be described by the state or province in which they are foaled; some breeds denote the state, where conception took place as the origin of the foal. The "breeder", is the person who owned or leased the mare at the time of foaling; that individual may not have had anything to do with the mating of the mare. It is important to review each breed registry's rules to determine which applies to any specific foal. In the horse breeding industry, the term "half-brother" or "half-sister" only describes horses which have the same dam, but different sires. Horses with the same sire but different dams are said to be "by the same sire", no sibling relationship is implied. "Full" siblings have both the same sire. The terms paternal half-sibling, maternal half-sibling are often used. Three-quarter siblings are horses out of the same dam, are by sires that are either half-brothers or who are by the same sire.
Thoroughbreds and Arabians are classified through the "distaff" or direct female line, known as their "family" or "tail female" line, tracing back to their taproot foundation bloodstock or the beginning of their respective stud books. The female line of descent always appears at the bottom of a tabulated pedigree and is therefore known as the bottom line. In addition, the maternal grandfather of a horse has a special term: damsire. "Linebreeding" technically is the duplication of more distant ancestors. However, the term is used more loosely, describing horses with duplication of ancestors closer than the fourth generation, it is sometimes used as a euphemism for the practice of inbreeding, a practice, frowned upon by horse breeders, though used by some in an attempt to fix certain traits. The estrous cycle controls when a mare is sexually receptive toward a stallion, helps to physically prepare the mare for conception, it occurs during the spring and summer months, although some mares may be sexually receptive into the late fall, is controlled by the photoperiod, the cycle first triggered when the days begin to lengthen.
The estrous cycle lasts about 19–22 days, with the average being 21 days. As the days shorten, the mare returns to a period when she is not sexually receptive, known as anestrus. Anestrus – occurring in the majority of, but not all, mares – prevents the mare from conceiving in the winter months, as that would result in her foaling during the harshest part of the year, a time when it would be most difficult for the foal to survive; this cycle contains 2 phases: Estrus, or Follicular, phase: 5–7 days in length, when the mare is sexually receptive to a stallion. Estrogen is secreted by the follicle. Ovulation occurs in the final 24–48 hours of estrus. Diestrus, or Luteal, phase: 14–15 days in length, the mare is not sexually receptive to the stallion; the corpus luteum secretes progesterone. Depending on breed, on average, 16% of mares have double ovulations, allowing them to twin, though this does not affect the length of time of estrus or diestrus. Changes in hormone levels can have great effects on the physical characteristics of the reproductive organs of the mare, thereby preparing, or preventing, her from conceiving.
Uterus: increased levels of estrogen during estrus cause edema within the uterus, making it feel heavier, the uterus loses its tone. This edema decreases following ovulation, the muscular tone increases. High levels of progesterone do not cause edema within the uterus; the uterus becomes flaccid during anestrus. Cervix: the cervix starts to relax right before estrus occurs, with maximal relaxation around the time of ovulation; the secretions of the cervix increase. High progesterone levels cause the cervix to become toned. Vagina: the portion of the vagina near the cervix becomes engorged with blood right before estrus; the vagina becomes secretions increase. Vulva: relaxes right before estrus begins. Becomes dry, closes more during diestrus; the cycle is controlled by several hormones which regulate the estrous cycle, the mare's behavior, the reproductive system of the mare. The cycle begins when the increased day length causes the pineal gland to reduce the levels of melatonin, thereby allowing the hypothalamus to secrete GnRH.
GnRH: secreted by the hypothalamus, causes the pituitary to release two gonadotrophins: LH and FS
Newmarket Racecourse is a British Thoroughbred horse racing venue in the town of Newmarket, comprising two individual racecourses, the Rowley Mile and the July Course. Newmarket is referred to as the headquarters of British horseracing and is home to the largest cluster of training yards in the country and many key horse racing organisations, including Tattersalls, the National Horseracing Museum and the National Stud. Newmarket hosts two of the country's five Classic Races - the 1,000 Guineas and 2,000 Guineas, numerous other Group races. In total, it hosts 9 of British racing's 36 annual Group 1 races. Racing in Newmarket was recorded in the time of James I. Charles II was known to attend races on Newmarket Heath with his brother, the future James II; the first recorded race was a match for £100 between horses owned by Lord Salisbury and Marquess of Buckingham in 1622. The racecourse itself was founded in 1636. Around 1665, Charles inaugurated the Newmarket Town Plate and in 1671 became the first and only reigning monarch to ride a winner.
Up until 1744, the two most valuable races run at the course were the King's Plate and the Town Plate. Two more Plate races were added in that year, paid for by local traders, both worth 50 guineas - one was a race for five-year-olds carrying 9 stone, one was an open age race in four mile heats. Another paid for by landowners was a four-year-old race over four miles, each carrying 8 stone 7 lbs. At that time, formal races at Newmarket only took place twice a year - once in April, once in October. A second Spring meeting was added in 1753. By 1840, there were seven annual meetings: The Craven Meeting - a week, beginning Easter Monday 1st Spring Meeting - a week, beginning Easter Monday fortnight 2nd Spring Meeting - a week, beginning Easter Monday month July Meeting - a few days, around 10 July 1st October Meeting - a week, beginning Monday before the first Thursday in October 2nd October Meeting - a week, beginning Monday before the third Thursday in October Houghton Meeting - a few days, beginning two weeks Newmarket Racecourse is made up of two courses - the Rowley Mile Course and the July Course.
Both are wide, galloping tracks used for Flat racing only, each with a capacity just over 20,000, though this is met. The Rowley Mile Course has a 1 mile 2 furlong straight with minor undulations towards'The Bushes', two furlongs out; the penultimate furlong is downhill and the last is uphill, forming'The Dip'. Races beyond the distance of 1m 2f start on the'Cesarewitch' or'Beacon' course which turns right-handed into the straight; the July Course sometimes called the Summer Course, has a 1 mile straight, known as'The Bunbury Mile'. After 2 furlongs, there is a long downhill stretch before the uphill furlong to the finish; this course uses the'Cesarewitch/Beacon' course for longer distances, again turning right into the straight. Technically, there is a third course, the Round Course, but this is only used once a year for the Newmarket Town Plate, a race of great historical significance, but limited importance in modern day racing; the Rowley Mile is used for racing in the Spring and Autumn, hosts the majority of the Group 1 races staged at Newmarket, including the 2000 & 1000 Guineas.
Up until 2010, it was the home of the Champion Stakes, Pride Stakes and Jockey Club Cup, which are now run as the Champion Stakes, British Champions Fillies' and Mares' Stakes and British Champions Long Distance Cup at Ascot on British Champions Day. The wide nature of the track means it is able to host races such as the Cambridgeshire Handicap and the Cesarewitch Handicap, which both have a maximum field size of 35, making them the largest fields for races in the UK after the Grand National. In 2005, the Rowley Mile hosted the now defunct Ascot Festival, the premier race of, the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, whilst the new grandstand at Ascot was being constructed; the July Course is used in Summer, hosts 2 Group 1 races, the July Cup and the Falmouth Stakes, both of which are run at the July Festival, the premier meeting staged at the July Course. The course is used for several evening meetings a year, with live music after racing - these draw a sellout crowd and are the highest attended of any meetings held at Newmarket throughout the year.
In 1999 the entire Newmarket programme was moved to the July Course whilst the new Millennium Grandstand at the Rowley Mile was being constructed. In 2008, due to waterlogging at York, several races from the Ebor Festival were staged at the July Course, including three Group 1 races - the Yorkshire Oaks, the Nunthorpe and the Juddmonte International. Both courses have grass airstrips for use by light aircraft, it was taking off from one of these in June 2000 that a Piper Seneca plane containing jockeys Ray Cochrane and Frankie Dettori crashed, killing the pilot and injuring both jockeys; the plane was headed for Goodwood in Sussex. Cochrane received the Queen's Commendation for Bravery in 2002 for saving Dettori's life; the airstrips on the Rowley Mile were used during the Second World War by the Royal Air Force as RAF Newmarket- the most important races were moved to the July Course during this period, the only racecourse in the UK that remained operational throughout the war. The Devil's Dyke runs past the edge of the July course.
About half of the racecourse complex, including the July and Cesarewitch/Beacon courses, is in the neighbouring county of Cambridgeshire. There are various names that have been given to courses or parts of courses at
A stallion is a male horse that has not been gelded. Stallions follow the conformation and phenotype of their breed, but within that standard, the presence of hormones such as testosterone may give stallions a thicker, "cresty" neck, as well as a somewhat more muscular physique as compared to female horses, known as mares, castrated males, called geldings. Temperament varies based on genetics, training, but because of their instincts as herd animals, they may be prone to aggressive behavior toward other stallions, thus require careful management by knowledgeable handlers. However, with proper training and management, stallions are effective equine athletes at the highest levels of many disciplines, including horse racing, horse shows, international Olympic competition; the term "stallion" dates from the era of Henry VII, who passed a number of laws relating to the breeding and export of horses in an attempt to improve the British stock, under which it was forbidden to allow uncastrated male horses to be turned out in fields or on the commons.
"Stallion" is used to refer to males of other equids, including zebras and donkeys. Contrary to popular myths, many stallions do not live with a harem of mares. Nor, in natural settings, do they fight each other to the death in competition for mares. Being social animals, stallions who are not able to find or win a harem of mares band together in stallions-only "bachelor" groups which are composed of stallions of all ages. With a band of mares, the stallion is not the leader of a herd but defends and protects the herd from predators and other stallions; the leadership role in a herd is held by a mare, known colloquially as the "lead mare" or "boss mare." The mare determines the movement of the herd as it travels to obtain food and shelter. She determines the route the herd takes when fleeing from danger; when the herd is in motion, the dominant stallion herds the straggling members closer to the group and acts as a "rear guard" between the herd and a potential source of danger. When the herd is at rest, all members share the responsibility of keeping watch for danger.
The stallion is on the edge of the group, to defend the herd if needed. There is one dominant mature stallion for every mixed-sex herd of horses; the dominant stallion in the herd will tolerate both sexes of horses while young, but once they become sexually mature as yearlings or two-year-olds, the stallion will drive both colts and fillies from the herd. Colts may present competition for the stallion, but studies suggest that driving off young horses of both sexes may be an instinctive behavior that minimizes the risk of inbreeding within the herd, as most young are the offspring of the dominant stallion in the group. In some cases, a single younger mature male may be tolerated on the fringes of the herd. One theory is that this young male is considered a potential successor, as in time the younger stallion will drive out the older herd stallion. Fillies soon join a different band with a dominant stallion different from the one that sired them. Colts or young stallions without mares of their own form small, all-male, "bachelor bands" in the wild.
Living in a group gives these stallions the protective benefits of living in a herd. A bachelor herd may contain older stallions who have lost their herd in a challenge. Other stallions may directly challenge a herd stallion, or may attempt to "steal" mares and form a new, smaller herd. In either case, if the two stallions meet, there is a true fight. If a fight for dominance occurs do opponents hurt each other in the wild because the weaker combatant has a chance to flee. Fights between stallions in captivity may result in serious injuries. In the wild, feral stallions have been known to mate with domesticated mares; the stallion's reproductive system is responsible for his sexual behavior and secondary sex characteristics. The external genitalia comprise: the testes; the testes of an average stallion are ovoids 8 to 12 cm long, 6 to 7 cm high by 5 cm wide. Stallions have a vascular penis; when non-erect, it is quite flaccid and contained within the prepuce. The retractor penis muscle is underdeveloped.
Erection and protrusion take place by the increasing tumescence of the erectile vascular tissue in the corpus cavernosum penis. When not erect, the penis is housed within the prepuce, 50 cm long and 2.5 to 6 cm in diameter with the distal end 15 to 20 cm. The retractor muscle contracts to retract the penis into the sheath and relaxes to allow the penis to extend from the sheath; when erect, the penis doubles in length and thickness and the glans increases by 3 to 4 times. The urethra opens within a small pouch at the distal end of the glans. A structure called the urethral process projects beyond the glans; the internal genitalia comprise the accessory sex glands, which include the vesicular glands, the prostate gland and the bulbourethral glands. These contribute fluid to the semen at ejaculation, but are not necessary for fertility. Domesticated stallions are trained and managed in a variety of ways, depending on the region of the w