January 29, 2016
QUALITY ROAD, the leading first-crop sire of 2014 by progeny earnings, is off to a fast start in 2016 and is currently the leading third-crop sire in North America. As of January 29th, the son of Elusive Quality has seen his progeny earn $298,288, placing him at the top of the third-crop sire list compiled by the Thoroughbred Daily News.
QUALITY ROAD, who stands for a fee of $35,000 in 2016, is best known as the sire of Hootenanny, the globe-trotting two-year-old sensation that won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (gr. I) in 2014. Leading QUALITY ROAD’s charge in 2016 is the promising Triple Crown contender Frank Conversation, who showcased his talent by winning the California Derby at Golden Gate Fields by 2 ½ lengths on January 16th. Trained by Doug O’Neill, who won the 2012 Kentucky Derby with I’ll Have Another, Frank Conversation also finished third in the Cecil B. DeMille Stakes (gr. III) at Del Mar last November and has been nominated to the $2 million UAE Derby (UAE-II) on March 26th at Meydan.
Another contributor to QUALITY ROAD’s 2016 success is In Equality, a half-brother to 2010 Woodbine Oaks winner Roan Inish. In Equality broke his maiden at Aqueduct in 2015 before rallying to finish third in the Withers Stakes (gr. III) on January 2nd, a performance that has stamped him as a Triple Crown contender.
Both Frank Conversation and In Equality have been nominated to the Triple Crown, along with four other sons of QUALITY ROAD. These include Marengo Road, a two-time winner that finished second in the Frank Whiteley Jr Stakes on January 16th, as well as the unraced colt Stone, who is out of the 2009 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) runner-up Stone Legacy. Trained by Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito, Stone has been breezing at Palm Meadows Training Center and should be ready for his debut in the near future.