Maine Chance Half-Brothers: The Q For Quality

A unique result in Sunday's Gr3 feature

The result of last weekend’s Dennis Drier Gr3 Poinsettia Stakes at Hollywoodbets Scottsville was somewhat unique, in a sense that the winner Marigold Hotel is by Querari, whilst the runner up Ameena is a daughter of his half-brother Quasillo.

To state that the siblings have enjoyed mixed fortunes as stallions would be an understatement.

Poinsettia punch-up! Marigold Hotel (Querari) beats Ameena (Quasillo) in a thriller (Pic- Candiese Lenferna)

Let’s take a closer look.

Currently fifth on the General Sires list, Querari has enjoyed a fruitful and successful career since his arrival at Maine Chance Farm  and has put together an enviable record, siring stakes winners in each of his first eight crops.

The Poinsettia victory of Marigold Hotel increased that tally to 32, headed by a pair of Gr1 winners in Querari Falcon and Rio Querari, the country’s champion sprinter of 2020/21. Incidentally, the latter completed a quick double for his sire when he ran out a gusty winner of the next day’s Gr3 Champagne Stakes at Hollywoodbets Kenilworth.

Rio Querari strikes in the Gr3 Champagne Stakes (Pic – Chase Liebenberg)

Notwithstanding the fact that Querari’s best racetrack efforts were over 2000m, his progeny tend to show the toe his sire line is renowned for.

In fact, he led the juvenile sires list on two occasions (2019 and 2022), no surprise, since his sire Oasis Dream is a renowned speed influences, as is his grandsire Green Desert.

However, far from being a one-dimensional speed sire, he is also a fine source of milers, as proven by the likes of aforementioned Gr1 Thekwini winner Querari Falcon, Gr2 Premier Trophy winner Head Honcho, Gr2 Dingaans hero Monks Hood and Gr3 Cup Trial winner Kampala Campari.

He has even managed to sire a rare stayer or two in East Cape Oaks victress Solana and  Desert Wisdom, who captured the 3200m Glenlair Trophy!

Querar-  superb sire (Pic – Jeremy Nelson)

While Querari is by a speedy son of Green Desert, Quasillo has as his sire the English Derby and Arc winner Sea The Stars, a grandson of Green Desert.

The chestnut arrived in South Africa, having scored twice in a career confined to just three starts. Successful in the Gr3 Bavaria Classic, he was injured when favourite for the Gr1 German Derby but returned at four to run second in the Gr3 Maxios Trophy.

Sadly, in contrast to his half-brother, Quasillo’s stallion career has been a chequered one, for in a cruel twist of fate, he has turned out to be semi-fertile. That he has three stakes performers to his name is quite an accomplishment, considering his first two crops number no more than 25 foals.

Quasillo daughter Ameena (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

Ameena, who lost the Poinsettia by the bob of a head,  won last season’s Gr2 Golden Slipper and Gr3 Strelitzia Stakes.

Hollywoodbets Durban July entry Quasiforsure reached the frame in both the Listed Jet Master Stakes and Model Man Mile and recently registered his fifth win with a fluent three-length victory at Hollywoodbets Greyville.

Considering he had the likes of Gr1 winners Battle Force and Pearl Of Asia behind him, that was a mighty impressive effort.

Rounding out the trio is Miss Putin, who finished third in the Listed Devon Air Stakes.

Amongst the handful of runners from Quasillo’s second crop of just nine foals are the two-time winners Piroshka (a half-brother to Gr1 winner Zarina) and Quasimodo.

The good looking Quasillo

Maine Chance owner Dr Andreas Jacobs is philosophical about Quasillo’s severely curtailed stud career.

“The horse still has fertility issues,” he confirmed. “Not so with our mares, as we can manage them better to the point where he can cover a mare three times. Unfortunately, that makes him unattractive to any outside breeder. If not for his problems, he would be tops!”

Quasillo may never reach the lofty heights that Querari has. Yet despite limited representation, he is doing his bit to maintain the family honour.

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