Quality Road

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Quality Road
Sire Elusive Quality
Grandsire Gone West
Dam Kobla
Damsire Strawberry Road
Sex Stallion
Foaled 2006
Country United States
Colour Bay
Breeder Edward P. Evans
Owner Edward P. Evans
Trainer 1) James A. Jerkens
2) Todd A. Pletcher (June/09)
Record 13: 8-3-1
Earnings US$2,232,830
Major wins
Fountain of Youth Stakes (2009)
Florida Derby (2009)
Amsterdam Stakes (2009)
Hal's Hope Stakes (2010)
Donn Handicap (2010)
Metropolitan Handicap (2010)
Woodward Stakes (2010)

Quality Road (foaled March 23, 2006, in Virginia) is an American Thoroughbred racehorse. Bred and raced by Edward P. Evans, his sire is World record setter Elusive Quality, who also sired 2004 Kentucky Derby/Preakness Stakes winner Smarty Jones and 2008 Breeders' Cup Classic winner Raven's Pass. His dam is Kobla, a daughter of 1983 Australian Champion Racehorse of the Year Strawberry Road.

Three-Year-Old Season[edit]

Trained by Jimmy Jerkens, Quality Road raced in Florida in early 2009, where his wins in the Fountain of Youth Stakes and Grade 1 Florida Derby made him a favorite for the Kentucky Derby. However, he suffered two injuries. The first was a quarter crack on his right hind foot the day he won the Florida Derby. In April, he suffered a second quarter crack on his right front foot. As a result, he missed all three legs of the U.S. Triple Crown series.

In mid June, owner Edward Evans transferred the colt to the care of trainer Todd Pletcher. On August 3, 2009, Quality Road made his first start since his injury, winning the Amsterdam Stakes at Saratoga Race Course in a track record time of 1:13.74 for six and a half furlongs.

On August 29, 2009, Quality Road finished third to Summer Bird in the Travers Stakes. He followed that with a second to Summer Bird in the October 10 Jockey Gold Cup. Later that month, Quality Road was pre-entered in the Breeders' Cup Classic, in the hopes that his running style would be well-suited to the polytrack at Santa Anita Park.

On November 7, 2009, Quality Road became the first horse to scratch at the gate in the Breeders' Cup Classic. After he refused to load into the starting gate, kicking with his hind legs on two or three occasions, the track crew blindfolded him and he kicked wildly, scraping his hocks on the gate and forcing the scratch.

Four-Year-Old Season[edit]

On January 3, Quality Road made his 4-year-old debut in the Grade III Hal's Hope Stakes as the odds-on favorite. He won by 234 lengths.

On February 6, he broke his own track record when he won the Donn Handicap with John Velzquez riding. Quality Road finished the race in 1:47.49 to break the record of 1:47.72, which he set when he won the 2009 Florida Derby. He took control of the race at the stretch and began to pull away at the eighth pole. Dry Martini, the 2009 Suburban Handicap winner, was second.

In an interview with the Thoroughbred Times after the race, Pletcher said he would point the colt for the Metropolitan Handicap and the "big races" at Saratoga Race Course "before the Breeders' Cup Classic" in fall 2010. He also complimented Quality Road's performance, saying, “He’s got a very high cruising speed and can go :46 and 1:09 and still keep going. Not many horses can do that and he was spotting weight to all those horses, six pounds or more.[1]

Quality Road earned a 121 Beyer Speed Figure in the Donn Handicap, the highest speed figure awarded for a race over one mile since 2005.

In the May 31 Metropolitan Handicap , Quality Road was installed as favorite and held off Musket Man to win in a very fast time of 1:33.11. On August 7, 2010, he ran 2nd in the Whitney Handicap, beaten a head by eventual Breeders' Cup Classic winner Blame. On September 4, 2010, he won the Woodward Stakes by 434 lengths.

Quality Road ran only once more. On November 6, 2010, he started in the Breeders' Cup Classic at Churchill Downs. Breaking from the 1 post, he remained on the rail throughout the race and finished 12th and last behind Blame. After the race, it was determined that the horse had an abscess and that was the reason he was pulled up.

Quality Road was then retired to Lane's End Farm in Versailles, Kentucky. His stud fee for 2011 was $35,000.

Finish Race Distance Jockey Time Grade Runner up/Winner Track
12th Breeders' Cup Classic 1 14 mi J. Velasquez 2:02.28 I Blame (1st) Churchill Downs
1st Woodward Stakes 1 18 mi J. Velasquez 1:50.00 I Mythical Power Saratoga Race Track
2nd Whitney Handicap 1 18 mi J. Velasquez 1:48.88 I Blame (1st) Saratoga Race Track
1st Metropolitan Handicap 1 mi J. Velasquez 1:33.11 I Musket Man Belmont Park
1st Donn Handicap 1 18 mi J. Velasquez 1:47.49 I Dry Martini Gulfstream Park
1st Hal's Hope Handicap 1 mi J. Velasquez 1:36.33 III You and I Forever Gulfstream Park
2nd Jockey Club Gold Cup 1 14 mi J. Velasquez 2:02.51 I Summer Bird (1st) Belmont Park
3rd Travers Stakes 1 14 mi J. Velasquez 2:02.83 I Summer Bird (1st) Saratoga Race Track
1st Amsterdam Stakes 6 12 fur J. Velasquez 1:13.45 II Capt. Candyman Can Saratoga Race Track
1st Florida Derby 1 18 mi J. Velasquez 1:36.41 I Dunkirk Gulfstream Park
1st Fountain of Youth Stakes 1 mi J. Velasquez 1:35.01 II Theregoesjojo Gulfstream Park
2nd Allowance 7 fur A. Garcia 1:22.23 None Theregoesjojo (1st) Gulfstream Park
1st Maiden 6 12 fur A. Garcia 1:16.11 None Toulouse Lautec Aqueduct Race Track
Pedigree of Quality Road
Sire
Elusive Quality
Gone West Mr. Prospector Raise a Native
Gold Digger
Secrettame Secretariat
Tamerett
Touch of Greatness Hero's Honor Northern Dancer
Glowing Tribute
Ivory Wand Sir Ivor
Natashka
Dam
Kobla
Strawberry Road Whiskey Road Nijinsky
Bowl of Flowers
Giftisa Rich Gift
Wahkeena
Winglet Alydar Raise a Native
Sweet Tooth
Highest Trump Bold Bidder
Dear April

References[edit]

  1. ^ Quality Road Destroys Competition in Runaway Donn | Thoroughbred Times