Exceed And Excel Retired From Stallion Duties

On the eve of the 20th anniversary of Exceed And Excel’s G1 Newmarket Handicap victory, it has been announced with great admiration and appreciation his retirement from stallion duties on the Darley stallions’ roster.


A son of Danehill out of the US-bred mare Patrona (Lamond), Exceed And Excel secured $375,000 at the 2002 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale – 2.3 times the sale’s average ($160,780) – for trainer Tim Martin, who reportedly never had a buyer for the horse but declared him a superstar of the future.

Nick Moraitis and Alan Osburg ended up in the ownership, and he developed into a racetrack phenomenon winning the Todman Stakes at two before reaching his prime as a three-year-old, when he won The Dubai Racing Club Cup and Newmarket Handicap – a stellar three-year-old season which also included wins in the G2 Up And Coming Stakes, G2 Royal Sovereign Stakes and the G3 Roman Consul Stakes.

He was declared Australia’s Champion Sprinter in the 2003-04 season.

Exceed And Excel finished his 11-start career with seven wins, six at Group level, with a Timeform rating of 126.


A two-decade breeding career of excellence, Head of Stallions Alastair Pulford has been there for every step of the journey, including sighting him at the 2002 Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale.

“We priced him at $50,000 in his first season (at stud) and that was aggressive back then. He was immediately very popular, he covered a really good book first year and they sold very well,” Pulford enthused.

“His first crop was absolutely outstanding so he really announced himself as a stallion immediately. Exceedingly Good won the first two-year-old race of the season at Flemington and we thought, ‘We’re in business here’.”

“A few months later he quinellaed both the divisions of the Blue Diamond Preludes. He got the Blue Diamond winner in his second crop, Reward For Effort, who went on to a career at stud himself.”

“His sixth crop was an exceptional crop; we sent a lot of high-class mares of our own to him that year. The level of mares he was getting was high and that crop included the Golden Slipper winner Overreach, Guelph and Sidestep.”

“He became the leading sire of two-year-olds, but it wasn’t only two-year-olds, he ended up being a great sire of horses of all ages.

“He was just an amazing horse from day dot.”

To date, Exceed And Excel’s 18 G1 winners include stars Mr Stunning, Bivouac, Excelebration, Microphone, Earthquake, Guelph, Exceedance, Mawj and Margot Did,et al.

  • G1 Golden Slipper Stakes (Overreach, 2013)
  • G1 Blue Diamond Stakes (Reward For Effort, 2009; Earthquake, 2014)
  • G1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes (Helmet, 2011; Guelph, 2013; Microphone, 2019)
  • G1 Champagne Stakes (Helmet, 2011; Guelph 2013)
  • G1 Coolmore Stud Stakes (Exceedance, 2019; September Run, 2020)
  • G1 Caulfield Guineas (Helmet, 2011)
  • G1 Golden Rose (Bivouac, 2019)
  • G1 Thousand Guineas (Guelph, 2013)
  • G1 Flight Stakes (Guelph, 2013)
  • G1 Newmarket Handicap (Bivouac, 2020)
  • G1 Darley Sprint Classic (Bivouac, 2020)
  • G1 William Reid Stakes (Flamberge, 2016; September Run; 2022)

Progeny of Exceed And Excel has amassed to date earnings of $270,816,673 for 1,804 winners and 215 Stakes winners.


“He was one of the first reverse shuttle stallions, we shuttled him to England and Ireland,” Pulford said. “His influence has been outstanding in both hemispheres, and as a broodmare sire he has also been outstanding.”

Exceed And Excel established himself as a global sire influence and completed 16 consecutive seasons of reverse shuttling to the northern hemisphere.

He is one of seven sires to achieve 200-plus Stakes winners, joining all-time greats: Danehill, Galileo, Sadler’s Wells, More Than Ready, Deep Impact and Dubawi – he is the only Australian-bred sire to do this.

The sire of 14 G1 winners as a broodmare sire, Exceed And Excel will continue to be seen in pedigrees for years to come.

Godolphin Australia Bloodstock Manager Jason Walsh said Exceed And Excel had earned his place among the great stallions with incredible results over a long period of time.

“His ability to produce top-class juveniles is what sets him apart from most stallions, and that’s not to say they don’t train on at three and four,” Walsh said.

“He’s been the most reliable source of early speed for so many seasons in both hemispheres, and his effect on the breed, and certainly on our organisation, globally has been profound.”

“The other thing that makes him remarkable is the number of seasons he would have shuttled consecutively, just amazing.”

“I was only reflecting that he’s the grandsire of a Melbourne Cup winner (Gold Trip), the grandsire of a Dubai World Cup winner (Thunder Snow), which is obviously dear to the heart of Sheikh Mohammed. Then from a broodmares’ perspective to think that he has been associated with a Derby (Epsom) winner in Anthony Van Dyck, and he’s still well sought-after in the sales ring.”


“He’s been a pleasure to have around, from a personality perspective he’s a true gentleman and has been a statesman in our stallion complex for so long,” said Walsh. “He’s got some outstanding young stock coming through from some of our best-performed young mares.”

“I don’t think there’s any overstating the influence he’s had on the breed and on our organisation.”

“I don’t think there’s any doubt his name will be in pedigrees the world over for many years to come,” Walsh concluded.

Exceed And Excel has and will continue to leave an indelible hoofprint on the racing and breeding world.

– Darley Australia

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