The eyecatcher of the recent Belgian Warmblood Stallion Inspection was Artist van den Driehoek Z from Zangersheide. A little later that same Artist also became the record holder of the stallion auction. For € 150,000 Artist van de Driehoek Z moved to Axel Verlooy’s Eurohorse, an absolute record.
Artist is a son by Aganix du Seigneur Z (Ogano Sitte x Chellano Z) paired to Gracile, and she is a daughter of Quasimodo vd Molendreef (Heartbreaker).
Striking detail, for breeders and owners Toon Raeymaekers and Jules Geuens this was their first foal and also the first time they presented a stallion at a stallion inspection.
Toon is a regional rider and by vocation he is a practical training teacher at an evening school. This job gives him the leeway to train and school horses. Jules is a pensioner and earlier used to be active in showdriving sports, in which he even made it to Regional Champion. He sporadically buys a riding horse which he then puts up in Toon’s yard.
For breeders and owners Toon Raeymaekers and Jules Geuens this was their first foal and also the first time they presented a stallion at a stallion inspection (picture@Paul Lens).
‘Jules buys them when they’re young, I school them and together we go to competitions. It’s our hobby, but by the time they’re seven or eight that’s as far as it goes for me and they’re ready to leave’, is how Toon summarises their partnership. ‘When we go out competing I make egg sandwiches in the morning. It’s our life, I have no children so the horses are my children.’ Jules adds: ‘We’re no real breeders, actually. It simply was a coincidence that I happened to own his dam Gracile. We had sold my former horse so we were on the lookout for a new one. After a six-month search we found Gracile at a dealer’s yard. She was four-and-a-half and just introduced to the saddle.’ Toon: ‘She right away caught the eye at our very first event, in the novice class. Nick Vrins promptly wanted to buy her. But you see, a couple of thousand Euros of profit is no payback for our pleasure. And she certainly has given us pleasure. As a 6-year-old she won in Jumping Mechelen, like she did in the Groentenjumping.’ The market had also noticed this and along with Nick Vrins there was interest from for instance Stephan Conter and Ludo Philippaerts. ‘That was more and more confirmation which made us realise that our Gracile was a really good one. So good indeed that it was worthwhile breeding a foal from her. And there was another reason, I’m totally blown away by Aganix du Seigneur Z. And not just me, it’s not by chance that he’s on the cover of the Z-Stallion Catalogue’,
Artist was born and Gracile was bought by Ludo Philippaerts. She was seven, the sort of age when Jules’ and Toon’s horses leave. Artist is her only foal and Gracile emigrated to America. That turned out to be not all that easy. Artist is an ET foal and at the time of his birth his dam was already living in America. But for his Z passport they needed a hair sample from her for DNA testing.
Because Jules wanted his Artist to grow up a stallion, he thinks that enhances a horse’s beauty, he was never gelded and that’s when the idea was born to present him at the stallion inspection. Without exception, everyone who laid eyes on Artist recognised the foal’s extraordinary beauty and how he had matured into a charismatic athlete with heaps of blood. This convinced the two friends that he should be given a chance. And so it happened that Jules and Toon presented their Artist to the stallion Jury. And even without audience he became the audience favourite of the BWP Inspection. The promotional video that was made of the auction horses made that quite clear. Then it was already quite obvious too that Artist was very commercial. It was confirmed at the time of the auction.
Aganix du Seigneur Z
‘The combination with Aganix worked well’, Jules smiles: ‘At the National Event of Regional Riders I had seen a very good Aganix . Next, I went to take a look at him during the Open Days of Zangersheide. It was the first time I saw him live and I was convinced. He is a proper sire. Aganix has lots of front, that is what Gracile needed and it has paid off.’