By Bill Finley
The Jockey Club (TJC) released breeding statistics Monday, which indicate that the 2020 North American foal crop will be about 20,500, a 3.4% decrease from the prior year.
A total of 1,552 North American stallions covered 31,198 mares in 2019. The matings have resulted in 19,677 live foals of 2020, a figure that is 3.4% lower than the one reported at this time last year. Through Sept. 29, the number of live foals reported is estimated to be approximately 85-90% complete.
The number of stallions declined 4.8% from the 1,630 reported at this time in 2018, while the number of mares bred declined 4% from the 32,508 reported for 2018.
The numbers in Kentucky were similar to those from around North America. In 2019, there were 17,240 mares bred that produced 12,200 live foals for a 2.9% decrease. Kentucky-based stallions accounted for 55% of all the horses bred in North America.
California was a distant second with 2,129 mares bred, edging Florida (2,024 mares bred).
The Pennsylvania breeding industry showed strong numbers with 853 mares bred and 510 live foals for a 50.4% increase.
Into Mischief, who stands at Spendthrift, was the most active sire in North America, having been bred to 267 mares. Coolmore stallions Justify and Mendelssohn were next, with both having bred to 252 mares. Their foals of 2020 represent their first crops.
When it comes to the number of mares bred, Coolmore and Spendthrift continue to dominate. Of the eight stallions who were bred to 200 or more mares in 2019, five stand at Coolmore and three at Spendthrift.