The continual upside of Exceedance

5 min read
As a scintillating winner of one of Australia’s greatest stallion-making races, a son of an outstanding sire of countless quality horses, and from a female family on the rise, Vinery Stud’s Exceedance is a young sire with a lot going for him.

Trained by Michael, Wayne and John Hawkes, Exceedance scored a brilliant victory against a star-studded field in the 2019 Coolmore Stud S. at Flemington.

\Ridden by Dwayne Dunn, Exceedance overcame an early check and charged home from ninth to defeat Bivouac and Libertini (I Am Invincible).

“All credit to the horse, he looked after me once things went wrong early,” Dunn said. “He travelled up nicely and I knew what was under the bonnet. He’s got a great attitude and can really accelerate.”

The Coolmore is a prestigious 3-year-old sprint that was elevated to Group 1 status in 2006, and since then it has become renowned as one of Australia’s foremost stallion-making races.

The stallion-maker

Exceedance is the most recent of eight colts to win the Coolmore since it was awarded Group 1 status, and the previous seven have set a high standard for Exceedance to uphold.

The 2008 winner was Northern Meteor, who retired to Widden Stud in 2009. Despite his untimely death from colic in 2013, he has left a lasting mark on the Australian industry. He is the sire of 287 winners from 368 runners, with 24 stakes winners including Cosmic Endeavour, Zoustar, Speak Fondly, Shooting To Win, Romantic Touch and Amanpour at Group 1 level. His sons at stud include Zoustar, Shooting To Win and Deep Field.

In 2010 it was won by Star Witness, who stands at Widden Stud. He has been represented by 364 winners from 584 runners. His 19 individual stakes winners include Global Glamour at Group 1 level, while Group 2 winner and Group 1-placed Star Turn now himself stands at Vinery.

The following year, the Coolmore was won by Sepoy. Shuttling between Darley Australia and the N H, Sepoy has sired 371 winners from 652 runners, headed by Group 1 winners Alizee and Salute The Soldier (Ger).


In 2013, Zoustar followed in the footsteps of his sire Northern Meteor and triumphed in the Coolmore. He now stands at Widden Stud, where his 2020 service fee was $121,000. His 310 runners have produced 208 winners, with 20 black-type winners including Sunlight and Zoutori at the elite level.

The 2014 winner was Brazen Beau, who went on to win the G1 Newmarket H. and placed in the G1 Diamond Jubilee S. at Royal Ascot. Shuttling between Darley Australia and the N H, he has had 125 winners from 248 runners to date. Brazen Beau is the sire of 11 individual stakes winners, headed by a standout New Zealand 2-year-old this season, On The Bubbles, who won the G1 Manawatu Sires’ Produce S. and the R. Listed Karaka Million.

The 2016 Coolmore was won by Flying Artie, who now stands at Newgate Farm and had a 2020 service fee of $16,500 (inc GST). With his oldest progeny 3-year-olds, he has sired five winners including this season’s G1 Blue Diamond winner Artorius.


The following year’s winner was Merchant Navy, who later won the G1 Diamond Jubilee S. at Royal Ascot. His oldest progeny are now yearlings and have sold for up to $500,000 during this year’s sale season.

Exceed And Excel

The sire of Exceedance is a Champion stallion who needs no introduction.

Exceed And Excel was himself a multiple Group 1 winner of the Newmarket H. and Invitation S., and the son of Danehill (USA) retired to stud in 2004.

Now commanding a service fee of $132,000 (inc GST), Exceed And Excel is the sire of 1549 winners from 2204 runners. He has been represented by 182 individual stakes winners worldwide, including 16 at Group 1 level, headed by the likes of Guelph, Mr Stunning, Excelebration (Ire), Bivouac and Overreach.

Gallery: Some of Exceed And Excel's Group 1-winning progeny

Exceed And Excel’s sons at stud include Helmet, Excelebration and Sidestep, while he has also made his mark as a broodmare sire with 53 stakes winners including Group 1 winners Alizee, Ten Sovereigns (Ire) (No Nay Never {USA}), Prompt Response (Beneteau), Anthony Van Dyck (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), Astern, Bounding (Lonhro), Magic Attitude (GB) (Galileo {Ire}), Crown Prosecutor (Medaglia d’Oro {USA}) and Elite Street (Street Boss {USA}).

A family on the rise

Exceedance is the first foal to race out of the Thorn Park mare Bonnie Mac (NZ), who is a half-sister to three stakes winners and herself won five races up to Listed level.

Bonnie Mac produced Exceedance in the spring of 2016, and the following year she had another Exceed And Excel colt named Oxley Road. Trained by Peter Moody, the 3-year-old colt has won two of his three starts to date including an impressive performance in the G3 Zeditave S. at Caulfield in February.

Oxley Road

That success has continued in the sale ring, where Bonnie Mac’s next foal, the Sebring filly Mac 'N' Cheese, sold to Spendthrift Australia for $300,000 at the 2020 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale.

Then, this year, a colt by Capitalist was offered by Yarraman Park Stud at the Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale. He was bought by Hickman Racing for $1,050,000 the first million-dollar yearling for his sire, and sadly, Bonnie Mac’s final foal before her death last year.

“He was a very athletic horse and he’ll only get better with time,” Greg Hickman said at Riverside Stables. “Being a half to Exceedance, maybe we have a chance of another Pierata (Pierro).”

Exceed And Excel
Mr Stunning