First Stakes-Winner for Trapeze Artist

 In 2017, News

The Ciaron Maher and David Eustace-trained Griff put himself in the picture for the Group I MRC Caulfield Guineas when capturing the Listed VRC Exford Plate (1400m) at Flemington on Saturday to become the first stakes-winner for Widden Stud’s promising young sire Trapeze Artist.

Griff resumed from a spell in Sydney finishing sixth in the Listed ATC Rosebud to Tiz Invincible and fifth in the Group III ATC Up and Coming Stakes to Tom Kitten, so had a fitness and class edge over many of his rivals.

He finished hard down the middle of the track to win running away by half a length with Mark Zahra in the saddle.



“He’s been used to being prepared up in Sydney for a couple of runs this preparation, Ciaron’s always been very sweet on his ability,” said David Eustace.

“His first up run was excellent, second up run he had to sort of ride a pretty hot speed so we were really confident coming in to today, thought he was going to get a lovely run, just needed a little bit of luck and a good ride and he got a great ride from Mark (Zahra).

“We’re really, really pleased for Shaun Griffiths as well, he’s put a lot of money in a short space of time into the game and he’s getting some nice results.”

Griff was an $80,000 purchase from the Widden Stud draft at the Inglis Premier Yearling Sale and has the overall record of two wins from six starts with prizemoney topping $161,000 and the $3million Caulfield Guineas next month looms large on the horizon.

“I’ll have a chat to Mark (Zahra), but he was certainly strong through the line there, he relaxes well, five weeks to the Guineas, almost certainly going there,” said Eustace.

“I think he’ll probably just have a trial in between, he’s not necessarily a sort of good doing colt, I don’t think he’ll need a run so I suspect he’ll just have a trial.”

Bred by Widden Stud in partnership, Griff is the second winner from as many foals for the Group III placed Sebring mare Chateau Griffo, who has changed hands several times, the most recently earlier this year when selling for $75,000 on Inglis Digital in February.

Griff is the first stakes-winner for Snitzel’s champion son Trapeze Artist, who stands at a fee of $55,000 this spring.