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11th May: Win could cap off a great week for Wigley
Published: 11 May 2017 - - Author: NZ Racing Desk

The Gr.1 South Australian Derby will be watched more eagerly than most by Inglewood Stud General Manager Gus Wigley on Saturday.

Wigley stands Zacinto, the sire of race favourite Odeon, at his family's North Canterbury property.

Odeon winning at Caulfield Photo: Bruno Canatelli

Already the sire of Gr.1 New Zealand Two Thousand Guineas winner Ugo Foscolo, a win on Saturday would mean a lot for the farm.

"It's a big one. He left the Gr.1 2000 Guineas winner already this year, and to leave a Gr.1 Derby winner from his first crop… it would place him in esteemed company as a sire," Wigley said.

It would mean a great deal for Wigley as well, particularly after becoming a father for the third time with the birth of his daughter Stella this week.

"My wife just had a baby on Tuesday, so it has been a big week. So hopefully Odeon can cap it off on Saturday and make it a huge week," he said.

Wigley doesn't think the rise in distance will bother the Mathew Ellerton and Simon Zahara trained runner.

"I'm excited to see him go over ground and it will be a test. His mother won over a mile and a half and his dad certainly leaves a lot of stayers. So I don't think the distance will be a problem for him at all," Wigley said.

"I've been talking with the ownership team over there and the trainers, and they think he has a huge amount of ability, it's all new to him still, he's still learning and only going to get better."

Odeon has drawn barrier five for Saturday's event and will be ridden by Damian Lane.

Bred by Kevin Hickman of Valachi Downs, who is a major shareholder in Zacinto, Odeon was sold at the New Zealand Bloodstock Select Yearling Sale for $77,500. 

Simon Zahra spotted Odeon when he was offered for sale at the New Zealand Ready To Run Sale in November 2015. He couldn't secure him at that sale but did six weeks later.

"My budget didn't go to what they wanted, which was $120,000,'' Zahra said. "I forgot about him but then couldn't get him out of my mind. I got a mate to make an inquiry and found he hadn't been sold. In the finish, the owner stayed in for 25 per cent and we got him for $100,000 and sold him to long-time stable clients."

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