Essential Quality, Maxfield to Stand at Jonabell in 2022


Essential Quality winning the BelmontSarah Andrew

Darley America will have two major new additions to its stallion roster for 2022 as GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile and GI Belmont S. winner Essential Quality (Tapit–Delightful Quality, by Elusive Quality) and fellow Grade I winner Maxfield (Street Sense–Velvety, by Bernardini) are set to retire to Jonabell after their final starts.

“To have both Essential Quality and Maxfield coming to Jonabell is as exciting as it gets. And to have accomplished what they did as homebreds in the colors of Godolphin makes it even that much more meaningful,” said Darley Sales Manager Darren Fox. “They consistently performed at the highest level and if you add in their outstanding pedigrees and conformation, we feel very confident that their legacy will continue to grow through their future offspring.”

Out of a Grade III-placed half-sister to champion and GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies winner Folklore (Tiznow), Essential Quality has won eight of nine career starts–four at Grade I level–and was named Eclipse Champion 2-Year-Old Male of 2020. In 2021, his victories include the Belmont in which he recorded a 109 Beyer, becoming the first Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner ever to capture the Belmont. He went on to win the GI Runhappy Travers S. at Saratoga, joining Street Sense (Street Cry {Ire}) as the only champion 2-year-olds in the past 30 years to take the “Midsummer Derby.” The gray is one of the favorites for Horse of the Year and his fee will be set following the GI Breeders' Cup Classic Saturday, Nov. 6.

Maxfield has never been off the board in 10 career starts and was a dominant winner of Keeneland's GI Claiborne Breeders' Futurity as a juvenile, like his future barnmate Essential Quality. Maxfield's six other career victories include the GII Stephen Foster S. and GII Alysheba S. at Churchill Downs. He also placed in the GI Whitney S. and GI Woodward S. this year. A son of Darley stallion Street Sense, Maxfield is out of the Bernardini mare Velvety, a half-sister to Grade I winner and successful sire Sky Mesa (Pulpit). Like Essential Quality, Maxfield's fee will be set following his final race, the GI Clark H. at Churchill Downs Friday, Nov. 26.

“In addition to the excitement of two new stallions, we are hearing from breeders a great deal of optimism especially with the strong sales results this year,” added Fox. “It goes without saying that times were tough for the industry last year but ours is a resilient bunch and hope springs eternal for the coming year. All that said, we are still maintaining moderation when setting our fees with only one of our top-tier stallions returning from last year seeing an uptick in price at this time.”

Perennial leading sire Medaglia d'Oro will stand at a fee of $100,000 for the new year. He was the number one yearling sire in North America by both average and median in 2020, and no stallion can match his 20 million-dollar yearlings since 2016. With over 80 worldwide Group or Graded winners–26 at the highest level–Medaglia d'Oro's top-tier performers in 2021 include Golden Sixty (Aus), Hong Kong Horse of the Year, who has won 17 of 18 career starts and over $10 million. Medaglia d'Oro is also the all-time leading sire of stakes winners at Saratoga and of Grade I winners at Del Mar.

Street Sense's fee will be set at $75,000 for 2022. In addition to his soon-to-be-retired son Maxfield, Street Sense's 2021 top performers also include GII San Vicente S. winner Concert Tour and GII Mother Goose S. heroine Zaajel. Since 2017, Only Into Mischief and Constitution can match his four graded stakes-winning juvenile dirt colts, a group that includes his four-time Grade I-winning son McKinzie.

Nyquist, 2020's leading first-crop sire, will stand for a fee of $55,000 in 2022. His juveniles of last year included Eclipse Champion and GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies winner Vequist and GI Summer S. winner Gretzky the Great. He is the cumulative leading second-crop sire by earnings, Grade I winners, Grade I horses, and graded stakes horses. In the sales ring, he sits third behind only Quality Road and Uncle Mo by 2-year-old average. His $2.6-million colt sold at Fasig-Tipton in March is the highest amount paid for any juvenile this year and is equal to a yearling by Into Mischief as the highest price paid for any horse at public auction in 2021.

Hard Spun's fee will remain at $35,000 for 2022. He will be represented in the GI Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile by Silver State, winner of this year's GI Metropolitan H. and GII Oaklawn H. Frosted, the record-breaking Met Mile winner, is priced at $20,000 for 2022. Ranked third behind Nyquist on the cumulative second-crop sire list, Frosted's top performers this year include Grade II winner Travel Column, who is one of five 3-year-olds to run a 90+ Beyer in 2021 for her sire, a total only Into Mischief and Curlin can top. Astern and Midshipman will go into 2022 priced at $10,000 each. Midshipman has two Breeders' Cup prospects in Grade II winner Special Reserve, headed to the GI Breeders' Cup Sprint, and undefeated 2-year-old filly Averly Jane, who is pointing towards the GII Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint. He is represented by a career-high 11 stakes winners in America this year. Astern, who shuttles from Australia, has eight first-crop winners this year and his daughter Sail By will be making her next start in the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf following a score in the GII Miss Grillo S. at Belmont.

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