Twins and cousin lines are important to the ZedGazette Team (ZGT) breeding theory. We have highlighted the history of inbreeding IRL when examining Medina Spirit’s pedigree (link) and the importance of creating cousin lines with siblings. This article will look at the technique “Identical by Descent” used in genetic algorithms.
Genetic algorithms are used in the world more commonly than one would think. China is using a genetic algorithm to help develop their high speed rail system (link), F1 teams have fine tuned their cars using genetic algorithms (link), and Zed Run uses a genetic algorithm to breed new horses into the game. Genetic algorithms are used to solve complex optimization problems. Breeding future champions in Zed Run IS a complex optimization problem.
Identical by Descent
Inbreeding will play an important role in the Zed Run, and not only because of historical race horse breeding techniques. Creating sibling lines of descent will be also be important because of the genetic algorithm technique called “Identical by Descent” (IDB). “Identical by descent (IBD) is a term used in genetic genealogy to describe a matching segment of DNA shared by two or more people that has been inherited from a common ancestor without any intervening recombination” (link). In simple terms, IBD’s goal is to recombine similar DNA as seen below. The middle pair has two offspring that recombine down the line.
Sibling lines are all the more important to build now that Zed Run has adjusted the breeding rules. Stallions can now only breed 3 offspring a month and mares 1. We are still able to create “twins” by straddling the mares breeding reset within the stallions time in the stud farm, and these horses will be useful in the IBD breeding technique. It will take time and patience to build family trees and communal cooperation to breed tomorrow’s champions.
In conclusion, inbreeding and creating sibling lines is not only a piece of the ZGT breeding theory because of historical precedent, but also because of techniques within genetic algorithm theory. Inbreeding by creating sibling lines should be an essential piece to any Zed Run breeding strategy.