Widden secures Trapeze Artist

5 min read
In a deal nearly two years in the making, Widden Stud has confirmed that it will stand four-time Group 1 winning sprinter Trapeze Artist after the conclusion of his racing career.

Managing owner and breeder of Trapeze Artist (Snitzel) Bert Vieira has been fielding interest to stand the star colt ever since his win in the 2017 Golden Rose S. As his reputation built with success in the G1 TJ Smith S. and the G1 All Aged S. last autumn, so did the interest in his prospective breeding services.

After registering another Group 1 success with an all-the-way win in Saturday's G1 Canterbury S. it has been confirmed that Widden has won the race.

Trapeze Artist following his win in the G1 Canterbury S.

"He's been the horse that everyone has wanted," Widden proprietor Antony Thompson told TDN AusNZ.

"We've spent a bit of time getting to know Bert and understanding what he wanted for the horse and we’ve come up with the right home for him. It’s a deal that's fair for everyone."

"He's been the horse that everyone has wanted." - Widden's Antony Thompson

Widden will look to highlight Trapeze Artist's record-breaking career in promoting him to the market.

He has broken the track records in three of his four Group 1 wins, bettering Black Caviar's (Bel Esprit) Randwick 1200m record in his win in the TJ Smith, running the Randwick 1400m in the All Aged S. faster than any other horse and then setting new mark over 1300m in his most recent win. His other Group 1, the Golden Rose S. was won by a record margin.

"He is just the hottest young sire prospect in town, that's what he is. He could be a real breed-shaper," Thompson said.

"He is a record-breaking racehorse. He's got unbelievable speed and is by a champion sire and he's got everything you want."

"You just don't come across a sire like that. Not only has he won four Group 1s, but the way he has done it. The times he has run and the way he's rated. He's it and a bit."

Tye Angland aboard Trapeze Artist (Image credit: Steve Hart)

According to Timeform, Trapeze Artist is the highest-ever rated entire from the Redoute's Choice line and is the highest rated son of Snitzel.

Trainer Gerald Ryan, who prepared Trapeze Artist's sire, say he is close to the best horse he has trained.

"He's up there with the best, if not the best, I've ever had." - Trainer, Gerald Ryan

"He's the first horse I've ever won four Group 1s with. He's done it all the way. We never missed him as a 2-year-old. He won the Black Opal, went to the Golden Slipper and the Sires and he hasn't shied away from running against the best around," he told Sky Sports Radio.

"He's a great-natured horse. He's easy to have around the place. He doesn't cause any concern and he's up there with the best, if not the best, I've ever had."

Managing owner and breeder Bert Vieira with trainer Gerald Ryan

Thompson said it was satisfying to have secured such a stallion to stand alongside the likes Zoustar, Star Witness and Nicconi.

"We've been working on this for a long time and it’s been a couple of years in the making and we’ve always had a really keen interest in standing him at Widden," he said.

"It’s been a couple of years in the making and we’ve always had a really keen interest in standing him at Widden." - Antony Thompson

A service fee will be confirmed once his racing career is completed and Thompson said that would be determined by the trainer and the owner.

"That's up to Bert and Gerald. At this stage they are focussed on winning the TJ again and that would be some feat," he said.

Ryan said that the plan was to tackle the two races he won last year before considering whether he may go to England.

"We are going to take it race by race. He will go to the TJ Smith and the All Aged. That will be it for Australia for him. If he goes to Ascot, we'll see. He's been inoculated and nothing has been set in concrete about Ascot yet," he said.

Widden still basking in Sunlight

The news comes after a huge weekend for Widden, with the filly it bred from the first crop of the rising star stallion Zoustar, Sunlight, winning the G1 Newmarket Hcp at Flemington on Saturday.

Thompson, whose wife Katie is in the ownership of Sunlight, remains amazed by what the filly has achieved, having won nine of her 14 starts, including two Group 1s and over $3.8m in prizemoney.

"She's one of the best for a 3-year old filly. I can only compare the likes Alinghi (Encosta De Lago), who was able to do what she's done," Thompson said.

"To do it at 2 and 3 against the boys and the older horses, it’s pretty special. She's certainly right up there in the history books as one of the best."

"It’s pretty special for her sire and for her to come along in his first crop in quite an achievement."