The 26-year-old son of Blushing Groom, who had stood the past 21 years under the Juddmonte banner, had covered 47 mares this year at a fee of £25,000. The colic was caused by strangulation of his small intestine by a fatty tumor.
“He had just completed his 21st season at stud under the management of Juddmonte, and we have lost both a very good friend to us and a stallion of international renown,” said Phillip Mitchell, general manager of Juddmonte Farms.
“It was a great privilege to work with Rainbow Quest, especially as he has made such a significant mark on the stud book through his sons and daughters,” said Simon Mockridge of Banstead Manor. “He will be sorely missed, in particular by John Gilbert, who cared for him for most of his career.”
Since his first crop hit the racecourse in 1989, Rainbow Quest has remained at the forefront of the British stallion ranks, siring 18 Group/Grade 1 winners and 95 stakes winners, results which have earned him tenth place in the all-time leading pattern sires' list. He has also excelled as a broodmare sire, with his daughters producing the
At $US950,000, Rainbow Quest was the second highest-priced yearling sold at the 1982 Fasig-Tipton July sale when purchased by James Delahooke on behalf of Khalid Abdullah.
Rainbow Quest finished third behind the subsequent top-class sires Darshaan and Sadler's Wells in the French Derby, he was second to El Gran Senor in the Irish Derby, but he regained the winning thread when taking the Group 2 Great Voltigeur Stakes, earning him the accolade of champion three-year-old stayer.
At four he won Group 1 Coronation Cup, was second behind Pebbles in the Group 1 Eclipse Stakes, he ran a much better race when a close third to Petoski in the Group 1 King George and Queen Elizabeth Stakes and then won the 1985 Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe after Sagace was disqualified for bumping Rainbow Quest more than once.
Rainbow Quest was given an International Classifications rating of 133 in 1985, making him the joint-top older horse in training in
As the winner of six races and £482,812 in prize-money, Rainbow Quest was always destined to be popular with breeders, and he retired to Juddmonte Farms at Wargravein 1986, where he stood for two seasons at a fee of £25,000 before his transfer to Banstead Manor Stud.
Rainbow Quest is likely to be remembered as one of the best broodmare sires in recent times. Not only have his daughters produced two
Rainbow Quest stood the majority of his career at a fee ranging from £25,000 to £30,000, and was never advertised for more than the £50,000 that he commanded from 2000-2002.