Stallion Grades
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Stallion Grades

What are Stallion Grades
General Description
Stallion Grades are a measurement of a retired stallion, in addition to SIP. Unlike SIP, grades test a stallion’s aptitude for producing high potential foals, rather than average foal potential of those produced.

A stallion must receive a grade once every year to be eligible to stand at stud. Grades can increase or decrease when tested, to ensure the grade shown is accurate to the stud’s current situation. You can test a stallion’s grade through the Stallion Testing Center and from the main Stud Services page. Once tested, grades are displayed on the horse’s page, in pedigrees, in the stud roster, and in genotype search results.

The different grades are A, B, C, D, and F, with A being the best grade possible, B being the "baseline" grade, and F (also referred to as a ‘Fail’) being the worst. Stallions who receive an F grade can not stand publicly. They can be bred privately, but it’s best to consider the reasons a stud might have received the grade they did before breeding them.
What do Stallion Grades consist of?
All stallions start with a B grade and improve or decline based on penalties and boosts assigned through the grading formula. In other words, a horse who grades B either has no penalties/boosts or a balancing number of penalties/boosts. A horse who grades A has more boosts than penalties and a horse who grades C or lower has more penalties than boosts.

The grading system considers Producer Quality (even if not tested), producing record (AFP), mutations, pedigree and genes that impact a foal’s chances of being a competitive racer. Genes that factor into grade include:
• Stat Genes
• Conformation
• Distance Genes
• Surface Genes
• Heritage
Why would a stallion receive a low or failing grade?
There are a few reasons a stallion might receive an F grade. A stallion will automatically receive an F if:
• Their AFP is below 20
• They’re a tested BA producer
• Both of their surface genes are Recessive
• Both of their distance genes are less than Good

That said, even if a stallion does not meet the requirements for automatic failure, if he has multiple factors contributing negatively to his grade he can still earn an F.

Stallions who are tested Average Producer Quality cannot grade higher than C (unless SS/Import/Custom), though they may grade worse. Stallions who have a tested Negative Mutation also cannot grade higher than C (unless balanced with tested AA+ PQ). Otherwise, if there is no obvious reason for a stud having received a low (C/D) or failing (F) grade, it is often attributed to Producer Quality, so most people are wary of breeding to C/D graded studs with no visible genetic or AFP penalties.
Benefits and penalties of grades
The main benefit to a stud having a high grade is his listing fee. A stallion who receives an A or B grade will receive a listing fee discount. Conversely, D graded stallions must pay a listing fee penalty. As mentioned before, the biggest penalty applies to studs with F grades, since they can not stand publicly unless their grades improve.