While the Group 1 success was unprecedented for Grand Glory, it was not for her family. The mare is a fifth-generation descendant of Pocahontas, whose family has made significant contributions on both sides of the Atlantic.
One of two excellent matriarchs to bear the name of Pocahontas (the other was perhaps the greatest producer of 19th-century England), the American mare of that name was a 1955 daughter of Roman. A sprinter-miler himself, Roman was known for passing both speed and precocity to his stock, and Pocahontas exemplified both proclivities. The small brown filly was at her best at 2, when she won the Schuylerville Stakes at Saratoga and placed in two other good stakes events.
In the paddocks, Pocahontas proved able to blend her speed successfully with whatever her mates contributed to the mix. She earned 1965 Kentucky Broodmare of the Year honors based on the exploits of Tom Rolfe (by Ribot), who was cleverly named after the son of the historical Pocahontas. The winner of the 1965 Preakness Stakes, Tom Rolfe was the American champion 3-year-old male of his year and a successful sire who tended to transmit Ribot's stamina. Tom Rolfe's year-older half brother Chieftain, on the other hand, showed more of the brilliance of his sire Bold Ruler; primarily a classy sprinter-miler, he was also a good stallion but tended to transmit more speed than did Tom Rolfe.
Pocahontas produced five stakes winners all told, and the best of her daughters as a racer was the Sir Ivor filly Lady Rebecca, whose name reflected the title accorded to the human Pocahontas when she visited England with her husband, Virginia colonist John Rolfe. The winner of the 1974 Prix Vanteaux, Lady Rebecca made an important contribution to European breeding through her Lyphard son Alzao, who won the 1984 Premio Ellington (ITY-G3) before going on to a stud career that saw him sire 100 stakes winners by the time he was pensioned in 2006.
Lady Rebecca had three daughters, and none produced stakes winners, though Faenza (by Forli) is the second dam of 1997 Santa Monica Handicap (USA-G1) winner Toga Toga Toga and Australian Group 2 winner Real Success, the third dam of 2004 Queensland Oaks (AUS-G1) winner Vouvray, and the fourth dam of 2014 Thorndon Mile Stakes (NZ-G1) winner A Touch of Ruby and 2019 New Zealand One Thousand Guineas (NZ-G1) winner Loire. Grand Glory descends through another daughter, the Lyphard mare Light of Hope, whose daughter Flicker of Hope is the second dam of 2015 Turkish champion 2-year-old filly Warrior Girl. Another daughter of Light of Hope, stakes-placed Happy Heart (by exit to Nowhere), is the dam of 2007 VRC Oaks (AUS-G1) winner Arapaho Miss (by Danehill Dancer) and the second dam of multiple Australian Group 2 winner Miami Bound and Australian Group 3 winner Declarationofheart.
Stakes-placed Maria de la Luz (Machiavellian x Light of Hope) has also done her part to continue the line, producing 2013 Canadian Stakes (CAN-G2) winner Minakshi (by Footstepsinthesand). The second dam of Grand Glory through her daughter Madonna Lily (by Daylami), she is also the second dam of 2018 Scandinavian champion 2-year-old male Irish Trilogy.
Pocahontas' family reflects the international nature of modern Thoroughbred breeding, having had its greatest recent successes in Australia and Europe. If the American Pocahontas did not quite live up to the standard set by the 19th-century bearer of that name, she was nonetheless a remarkable matron in her own right, and one who deserves the glory earned for her by her descendants.