Plaudette -- born in 1931, dam of World Champion Titlist "Maddons Bright Eyes." Bright Eyes set 8 track records and equaling three with World Champion Titles in 1949 and 1951. Warren Shoemaker owned Plaudette and raised Bright Eyes. Plaudette was sired by Thoroughbred, King Plaudit by Kentucky Derby winner Plaudit. She gave birth to Bright Eyes when she was 15 years old.
All the track records established by Bright Eyes were in tenths of seconds. She would have retained her records for many more years however the timing was switched to hundredths. Her speeds were rounded off to tenths up or down. I know she lost some records by the timing change and in fact she ran faster on some than the horses who took away her honor.
I received this photo from either Cecil Dobbin, C. L. Maddon or Hank Wiescamp. It is Plaudette and Maddons Bright Eyes. I don't remember who. I recall it was somewhat of a dark secret and almost considered traitorous to let this photo be seen. In the early days of Quarter Horses there were only a few horses registered. Bright Eyes had already established her superiority by the time her dam was discovered by authorities.
For dozens of years leading breeders raised great horses who flunked the excessive white AQHA rule. At the annual AQHA convention Bud Warren, Blair Darnell, Hank Wiescamp, Warren Shoemaker, Jack Casement and many others argued with the "powers" to cut some slack on allowing more white. AQHA held firm.
One of the great mistakes AQHA made led to the blessing of other enterprises. When AQHA made strong white color limitations all pinto and appaloosa colors were eliminated from AQHA registration. That tossed them away to be welcomed by the Appaloosa and Paint registries. Many "excessive whites" became the value leaders in those enterprises. One breed remains to be founded from the error of AQHA and that would be the color of Plaudette, a paint-appaloosa breed. Had AQHA had the foresight they would have controlled all three registries -- I am glad they messed up. Color would have been king!
Author: Darol Dickinson