Group 1 speaks volumes for Vert De Grece

Vert De Grece (Ire) has marked the anniversary of his G1 Criterium International (1600m) victory by covering two more well-bred mares at Geisel Park Stud in Myalup.

The Criterium International at Saint-Cloud has been an important target for Darley and Coolmore for many years.  It’s the final Group 1 of the year on the European juvenile calendar and has been dominated by the industry heavyweights.

Darley colts Thunder Snow (Helmet) and Royal Meeting (Invincible Spirit) were successful in 2016 and 2018 while Saturday’s renewal saw Coolmore trainer Aidan O’Brien win it for the fifth time with Van Gogh (American Pharoah).

Like Vert De Grece in 2014, Van Gogh won his maiden in Ireland before heading to Paris.  And both colts cleared out to score by four lengths at Saint-Cloud.

Those stats speak volumes for Vert De Grece.  He’s a son of Verglas who shuttled to WA for two seasons siring 13 stakes horses at a 60% winning strike-rate.  “I signed Verglas to stand out here but Vert De Grece was a superior racehorse,” agent John Chalmers claimed.  “He has more length and overall strength than his sire and his turn of foot was nothing short of amazing to win the Criterium International.”

Verglas and Vert De Grece represent the influential Grey Sovereign sireline which has provided the west with leading stallions like Beau Sovereign, Metal Storm, Tribu, Cheraw & Kenvain.

“The numbers have been solid for Vert De Grece this season and that’s a positive sign for a stallion serving his fourth book,” Geisel Park manager Conor Dunlop reported.  “Green and Shady is his only 2yo to trial so far and he was placed at Lark Hill last month.

“He covered Regal Gossip and Zeinite before Saturday’s Criterium International and his fertility is averaging 90%.”

Regal Gossip (Dylan Thomas) was bred by Bob Peters and is a winning half-sister to Cohort (LR Belmont Guineas).  Her first foal is a yearling filly by All American.  Zeinite (Due Sasso) won three sprints during the winter season at Belmont in 2017.  She is owned by Tameeka Brown and her first foal is a yearling filly by Universal Ruler.

Geisel Park is still booking late foaling mares to Vert De Grece at a $5,500 (inc GST) service fee.  Broodmare owners can contact Conor Dunlop on 0447 434 735.