Coronado's Quest, one of the top 3-year-olds of his year and from the same female family as the great Ruffian, died March 8 from heart failure after covering a mare at the Japan Bloodhorse Breeders' Association's Shizunai Stallion Station.
The 11-year-old son of Forty Niner stood at the Hancock family's Claiborne Farm near Paris, Ky., before being sold to Japan breeders in the fall of 2003.
Coronado's Quest proved popular in Japan, covering 134 mares in 2004 and 122 in 2005.
As a 3-year-old in 1998, Coronado's Quest missed out on the spring classics for various reasons, but accomplished enough otherwise to be among the Eclipse Award finalists. Known for his high-strung attitude, he beat that year's Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Victory Gallop in both the Buick Haskell Invitational Handicap (gr. I) at Monmouth Park and Travers Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga during a five-race win streak. Trained by Shug McGaughey, Coronado's Quest also won that year's Wood Memorial, Riva Ridge, and Dwyer Stakes, all grade II in New York.
Bred by Stuart S. Janney III, whose parents raced homebred Ruffian, Coronado's Quest won five of six starts as a 2-year-old, including the Remsen (gr. II), Cowdin (gr. II, in track record time), and Nashua (gr. III) Stakes, all in New York, in Janney's colors. Janney sold an interest in Coronado's Quest to Robert and Janice McNair's Stonerside Stable in May of the colt's 3-year-old season.
Coronado's Quest retired after his 3-year-old season with a record of 10 wins from 17 starts and earnings of $2,046,190 and entered stud at Claiborne for $60,000. His fee was upped to $75,000 the following season because of prevailing market conditions. Coronado's Quest, however, failed to perform to expectations and the decision was made to sell him.
Coronado's Quest sired 10 stakes winners, including three-time grade I winner Society Selection and other graded winners Allspice and Miss Coronado. Millionaire Society Selection scored her big win in 2004 in the Travers' female counterpart, the Alabama Stakes (gr. I), and also was a grade I winner in 2003. Coronado's Quest, who was produced from the Damascus mare Laughing Look, sired the earners of $8.7 million.