Date of this Version
The fixed effects of year of race, season of race, sex, method of start, annual number of starts, length of race and racetrack were evaluated on best annual racing time in Finnish Horses. Data included 1,378 records for 554 horses by 206 sires. Five models were assumed within the age groups from 3 to 6 yr. The annual number of starts, method of start and season of race effects were interrelated. An increase in number of starts was associated with considerable improvement in a horse's best annual racing time. Records should not, however, be adjusted for effect of annual number of starts because it would simultaneously account for part of genetic differences among horses. The largest estimates of heritability were obtained for best annual racing time when the model included the fixed year-season and sex effects. Corresponding to this model, the estimate of repeatability for best annual racing time over the four age groups was .60 ± .03. An example of best linear unbiased predictions of sires' breeding values based on progeny records in one or several ages is presented.