I thought it might be helpful to list the best stakes winners (those with 1,000+ Performance Points) for the various nick categories. Listed for each stakes winners is its name, pedigree (sire–dam, broodmare sire), price for which it sold at the 2010 Keeneland September sale ($ omitted), and the number of Performance Points it earned. The stakes winners are listed in descending order (best ones first, those with the most Performance Points).
A Stakes Winners (1,000+ Performance Points)
Dullahan (Even the Score–Mining My Own, Smart Strike), 250,000, 2,936 Performance Points.
Creative Cause (Giant’s Causeway–Dream of Summer, Siberian Summer), 135,000, 2,039.
Daddy Nose Best (Scat Daddy–Follow Your Bliss, Thunder Gulch), 35,000, 1,757.
Lady of Fifty (After Market–K. D.’s Shady Lady, Maria’s Mon), 40,000, 1,693.
Blueskiesnrainbows (English Channel–Cho Cho San, Deputy Minister), 33,000, 1,572.
Paynter (Awesome Again–Tizso, Cee’s Tizzy), 325,000, 1,502.
Sabercat (Bluegrass Cat–Miner’s Blessing, Forty Niner), 120,000, 1,198.
Jimmy Creed (Distorted Humor–Hookedonthefeelin, Citidancer), 900,000, 1,139.
Northern Passion (First Samurai–A Touch of Glory, Golden Gear), 95,000, 1,134.
Macho Macho (Macho Uno–Dazzling Contrast, General Meeting), 160,000, 1.082
Evelyn’s Dancer (Songandaprayer–Seraphic Too, Southern Halo), 4,500, 1,028.
Pianist (More Than Ready–Red Piano, Red Ransom), 100,000, 1,009.
Dance Card (Tapit–Tempting Note, Editor’s Note), 67,000, 1,002.
B Stakes Winners (1,000+)
I’ll Have Another (Flower Alley–Arch’s Gal Edith, Arch), 11,000, 4,194.
My Miss Aurelia (Smart Strike–My Miss Storm Cat, Sea of Secrets), 550,000, 4,147.
Elusive Kate (Elusive Quality–Gout de Terroir, Lemon Drop Kid), 70,000, 3,284.
Bodemeister (Empire Maker–Untouched Talent, Storm Cat), 260,000, 1,705.
Liaison (Indian Charlie–Galloping Gal, Victory Gallop), 290,000, 1,667.
Isn’t He Clever (Smarty Jones–Sharp Minister, Deputy Minister), 45,000, 1,237.
Hero of Order (Sharp Humor–Ocean Sprite, Ocean Crest), 3,000, 1,048.
C Stakes Winner (1,000+)
Contested (Ghostzapper–Gold Vault, Arch), 110,000, 1,634.
D Stakes Winners (1,000+)
Fed Biz (Giant’s Causeway–Spunoutacontrol, Wild Again), 950,000, 1,710.
Drill (Lawyer Ron–Cat Dancer, Storm Cat), 300,000, 1,450.
Belle Gallantey (After Market–Revealed, Old Trieste), 10,000, 1,271.
Chips All In (North Light–Maria’s Mirage, Maria’s Mon), 4,500, 1,151.
In looking at the lists above I recommend paying particular attention to the sires and broodmare sires involved (the basis for most nick ratings). I can not really tell at a glance why the A stakes winners are rated highly and the D stakes winners are rated lowly. It is not evident to the naked eye (at least to my naked eye). Perhaps you can see something I do not.
(That brings up a point. It is relatively easy to to see with the naked eye how good a pedigree is. A foal by A.P. Indy out of a G1 winner by Theatrical is obviously a pretty good pedigree. Ditto for a foal by Storm Cat out of a G1 winner by Unbridled.
Yet the former might be a D nick and the latter an A nick. The nick rating purports to provide insight that can not be determined by the naked eye. That is what they are selling. Unfortunately, their “insight” is not nearly as good as they want it to be when it comes to predicting future racetrack success.)
Because the small not rated group had such good success, I decided to list all 11 of their stakes winners. I do have some comments on this group and will discuss them after the list.
Not Rated Stakes Winners (all)
Grace Hall (Empire Maker–Season’s Greetings, Ezzoud), 95,000, 2,946. (????)
Judy the Beauty (Ghostzapper–Holy Blitz, Holy Bull), 20,000, 2,312. (now rated A)
Gypsy Robin (Daaher–Feisty Princess, Indian Charlie), 27,000, 1,499. (now rated A++)
Private Zone (Macho Uno–Auburn Beauty, Siphon), 15,000, 1,317. (still not rated)
Silverette (Street Sense–Holy Lightning, Holy Bull), 290,000, 698. (still not rated)
Mucho Mas Macho (Macho Uno–A. P. Andie, Star de Naskra), 10,000, 656. (now rated A++)
Raging Daoust (Kafwain–Champagne Forever, Caveat), 10,500, 537. (????)
Street Life (Street Sense–Stone Hope, Grindstone), 130,000, 438. (now rated B)
Rocket Twentyone (Indian Charlie–Symphonic Lady, Blare of Trumpets), 95,000, 336. (????)
Lulu Wong (Badge of Silver–Lovely Cool, Indian Charlie), 27,000, 278. (now rated A++)
Window Boy (Include–Window Woman, Skip Away), 12,000, 217. (now rated A++)
(I have added a notation to these 11 stakes winners as to what their nick ratings are now. Two are still not rated. Three are unknown. Of the six who are now rated, four are now A++, one is A, and one is B.)
The first thing that jumps out at me about these 11 stakes winners is that their broodmare sires mainly hail from odd sire lines. The mainstream for both male lines and broodmare sire lines is Northern Dancer and/or Mr. Prospector. Only one of the broodmare sires above is from the Northern Dancer male line. That is Ezzoud, broodmare sire of Grace Hall. Ezzoud is by Last Tycoon, by Try My Best, by Northern Dancer. Ezzoud, Last Tycoon, and Try My Best are not exactly mainstream Northern Dancers, at least in terms of North American pedigrees.
Only one of the broodmare sires above is from the Mr. Prospector male line. That is Grindstone, broodmare sire of Street Life. Grindstone was by Unbridled, by Fappiano, by Mr. Prospector. That is more in the mainstream than Ezzoud, but Grindstone is not exactly one of the leading broodmare sires.
The other nine broodmare sires involved above (Holy Bull twice, Indian Charlie twice, Siphon, Star de Naskra, Caveat, Blare of Truumpets, and Skip Away) are all pretty far off the Northern Dancer/Mr. Prospector beaten path. And Indian Charlie shows up again as the sire of Rocket Twentyone.
So I can see why a computer might have a tough time generating nick ratings on these 11 pedigrees. They are generally somewhat obscure pedigrees, especially off the beaten path in their broodmare sire lines. Not many foals have been bred similarly.
Another thing I noticed about these 11 pedigrees is that four of them (including the top three) were out of dams who were stakes winners. Season’s Greetings (dam of Ezzoud) was a stakes winner in France. Holy Blitz (dam of Judy the Beauty) was a listed stakes winner. Feisty Princess (dam of Gypsy Robin) was a stakes winner with a record of 16-5-4-3 for earnings of $141,613. A. P. Andie (dam of Much Mas Macho) was a listed stakes winner and an earner of $262,402.
Additionally, Raging Daoust and Rocket Twentyone were out of stakes-placed mares (Champagne Forever and Symphonic Lady, respectively). So six of the 11 were out of black-type mares. That seems to me to be a pretty good percentage, better than that for the sale overall.
I am suggesting that class in the dam might have been the overlooked factor in these 133 not rated foals generally and these 11 stakes winners specifically.