On a day when the world loudly celebrates a couple of all-American political campaigns -- the Obama/Biden ticket is now official and McCain/Palin is today's big news -- I thought it would be fun to look at an aptly-named Thoroughbred whose influence on the breed is growing every year.
Quiet American (SRO) is of course the sire of 1998 Triple Crown near-hit Real Quiet (SRO), and his male line stands a reasonably good chance to continue through that son.
But it's through his daughters that Quiet American has shown the most promise. He is represented as a broodmare sire by A.P. Warrior (SRO), Arouse (SRO), Bernardini (SRO), Congressionalhonor (SRO), Lunarpal (SRO), Spellbinder (SRO), and Whywhywhy (SRO). With such runners as Wild Gams (pedigree), the ill-fated Horse of the Year Saint Liam (pedigree), and millionaires Cherry Mix (FR) (pedigree) and Mentality (AUS) (pedigree), Quiet American has shown that his daughters pass on a huge amount of talent. In fact, this son of Fappiano breaks 3% graded stakes winners-to-foals of racing age (and even better, 4.26% graded winners-to-foals age 3+) as a damsire. His lifetime progeny earnings as a broodmare sire will pass $30 million in 2009 -- not bad for a stallion who's still standing.
That's right -- at age 22, Quiet American just put in his 18th year at stud and is on Darley's roster for 2009.
Not convinced? Take a look at the Leading Broodmare Sires list on BloodHorse.com. Okay... he ranks #66 by 2008 earnings. But re-sort the list by AEI (just click on that column header) and you'll find that Quiet American has jumped to the top of the list, with average earnings more than 2.5 times the earnings of foals out of the same mares but by different stallions. That's a telling number. In fact, it's lower than previous years -- he had an AEI of 2.84 in 2007, 3.29 in 2006, and 3.08 in 2005, leading the AEI list each of those years. (You can view archived breeding lists here.)
Quiet American is the result of an inbreeding practice that is risky but has the potential to be brilliant. He is by a grandson of Dr. Fager and out of a daughter of Dr. Fager. The pattern is deeper though -- on both his top and bottom sides, he has the cross of Dr. Fager with a daughter of the tremendous Princequillo mare Cequillo, translating to a five-cross pedigree that shows Dr. Fager 3 x 2 and Cequillo 4 x 3.
Quiet American's bloodlines allow him to be bred to Northern Dancer-line mares; the only additional significant inbreeding such a cross introduces is to Nearctic, sire of Northern Dancer and broodmare sire of Quiet American's dam, Demure. There's even less crossover with Seattle Slew (linebreeding to Princequillo). In Reality-line mares work well too (the fact that In Reality's broodmare sire is also Dr. Fager's sire -- Rough'n Tumble in both cases -- is less significant from an inbreeding viewpoint because enough generations have passed to dilute the pattern to one of linebreeding).
At 23 in 2009, Quiet American doesn't have too many crops left in him. Any breeder hoping to produce a nice filly might take another look at Quiet American for the upcoming season. I suspect that by the time we nominate our next round of presidential contenders here in the U.S., the opportunity to book a mare to Quiet American might have passed.