That is just it and part of the problem. If what he has is middle class horses and he dose not realize this then he is going to have a problem marketing them. Also I have found that people who think that their low class horses are middle class and middle class horses are upper level horses have a hard time moving forward and improving.
There is nothing wrong with MC horses but if that is what you have then do one of 2 things. Live with it and do not take offense to it or improve. Sometimes honesty is what people need in their breeding program.
You know, you do a pretty good job at stepping on my toes, you know it? Sure know how to get me riled up. Kevin shows, and won't sell a colt off the ground for less than $3000 unless it comes up a dud. (Bad confo) His horses are shown and his stallion proven, but when it comes down to the fact that your wife is going to demean you in front of your friends about the animals you take pride in, I can see where there inlies a problem. I can understand where you're coming from, I can see a nicer way of saying the things you do. But when you're basically taking over a program that's been in the works for 40+ years, and you have show records like the progeny of his relatives, and what his colts come out like, with their sound bodies, and likeable minds, and calm temperaments, you'd take pride in it. I just kinda wondered if there was anyone else that would be offended if your spouse put your program down in front of two other people that really appreciated what you had in your barn?
As for the type of program the guy has, I would have to see what caliber of horses he was turning out. Are they showing or winning at anything? Are they excelling at anything even if they aren't showing; ranch work, trail riding, etc.? Bloodlines are nice but they don't always make a horse. I have seen some really well bred horses that I wouldn't throw my saddle on for all the rice in china and I have a mutt of a horse that I wouldn't sell for all the money in the world. So there are a lot of variables here to consider.
I have never been on a more cowy horse, with more of a mind to learn than the ones he has produced. My husband and I have been riding some of his horses up through some of the roughest ground you'll see in the state of Montana. We're talking temperatures below -30º, windchills of -50º, snow blowing, climbing up and down slopes steeper than I would with a pair of cleats. These suckers have the heart to go all day, and then some. And that's been the dozen that we've had here in the last 6mos. Every single one of them. Anywhere from 2 yr olds to 10yr olds... they're all the same. For where I stand, for the price he sells them at, they're gold!
Since the OP was talking about this persons program I am thinking they are talking more of a breeding program and what I have found a lot of the time is that a lot of breeders can not afford to keep their foals so they let them go cheep or perhaps less then what they THINK they should get b/c they need to move them. To me these are the breeders who need to stop and rethink what they are doing. Dose not mean their program is good or bad but needs some thought put into it. Might be horses marketing or both.
So when you are talking prospects breeding has a lot to do with what a foal will bring. It also had to do with how people will look at these horses and who will buy them and for how much.
I know that they spare no expense to have the best for every horse on their place. They breed between 4 and 8 a year, (of their 25 or so broodmares) to maintain their mares and keep them ridden and in good, using shape. And they'll keep 'em if they can't pick up the price they ask. This does not affect their turnaround, and if they want to sell one, they can advertise by word of mouth, and get it sold. A lot of repeat customers... I know a man that has 3 full brothers to a colt he foaled this year, and the guy wants #4, because he likes them that much. He shows in ABRA mainly, but that's not to say they're not being proven.
I just don't understand how a person can put their spouse down in front of people obviously supporting his program, and be ok with that.. I just don't know, maybe it's because she's NOT a horseperson, and maybe it's because she doesn't have 4-8 people waiting in line for a baby each year. IDK. Maybe it's because SHE thinks they're worth more than they are and she's disappointed at what they bring each year. IDK... I just found it severely rude.