World Champion and double-millionaire Vintage Master p,2,1:57.4; 3,1:49.2f; 4,1:48.1f ($2,119,713), by Western Ideal and from Arts Vintage (by Artsplace), will be retired from racing and will stand in Ontario at Winbak Farm of Canada
. His stud fee has been set at $3,500.
The five-year-old horse was bred and owned by Brittany Farms and the Brian Monieson Revocable Trust and trained by Jimmy Takter. In making today’s announcement, Brittany Farms manager Art Zubrod said that Ontario and Winbak Farm are a perfect fit for the young stallion.
“I think Ontario has the sport’s greatest program top to bottom,” Zubrod said. “Vintage Master will become the richest and fastest son of Western Ideal to stand there. There’s a lot to like about this horse in terms of accomplishments, pedigree and looks, and we think he’ll get a great reception from breeders. Plus, we’ve always had an excellent relationship with Joe Thomson and Winbak.”
Thomson concurred. “We’re excited to have Vintage Master in Ontario. He was such a great horse and they have such a great program. They improve it every year. Purses and wagering are up, integrity is at the forefront, and every track treats you so well. It’s fun to race here. We will be breeding some top mares to him this year."
Vintage Master, stakes-placed on several occasions at two, won more than $1.3-million as a three-year-old and captured such prestigious stakes that year as the Cane Pace, Tattersalls Pace, Adios and Bluegrass.
He set a Freehold track record (1:50.4h) and North American season’s record winning the Cane and a stakes record and season’s record winning the Adios (1:49.2f). He was second in the $1-million Meadowlands Pace final and in an elimination of the Little Brown Jug.
He twice set a five-eighths-mile track World Record as a four-year-old. He won an Open at Harrah’s Chester in early June in a World Record 1:48.4 and later lowered that mark to 1:48.1 while winning an elim of the Ben Franklin there. He went on to win the $500,000 Ben Franklin final a week later, defeating such other heavyweights as Foiled Again, Shark Gesture and Hypnotic Blue Chip.
His trainer, soon-to-be Hall of Famer Jimmy Takter, has said that Vintage Master was his favourite horse. “I can't think of a horse that I have liked more than Vintage Master,” Takter said. “He gave it everything he had every time he went on the track. He went some monster miles no matter the trip. He could wear you down first over, he could hold you off cutting the mile, and could fly by you from behind."
Vintage Master is the second-richest son of Western Ideal, just shy of Rocknroll Hanover, and the second-fastest as well, behind only American Ideal. He is a full brother to stakes winner Ideal Vintage p,3,1:50.2 ($420,396) and a three-quarter brother to last year’s Metro Pace elim winner Great Vintage p,2,1:50.4 ($237,973). He is from one of harness racing’s most sought-after maternal families, as his second dam, Napa Valley, is a full sister to the great matron and Hall of Fame mare Silk Stockings.
(Brittany Stallion Management)