Shortly after Queenslander Dick Karreman purchased the impossibly beautiful The Oaks Stud in August 2002 he set about buying some quality broodmares.
At the 2003 Magic Millions Winter Broodmare sale he purchased the Dahar mare Artless from Geoff and Beryl White's Invermien Stud for $150,000.
It didn't take long for Karreman to make a return on his investment when the Fantastic Light colt foal Artless was carrying at the time made $180,000 to the bid of Gai Waterhouse at the 2005 Easter Yearling sale.
It was no surprise Waterhouse was interested in the colt as she trained his half-brother Excellerator. The son Of Marscay was one of the best of his generation.
At two he reeled off five consecutive wins beginning with the Listed Canonbury Stakes and culminating in the Magic Millions 2yo Classic and the Group 2 Silver Slipper Stakes. He met defeat for the first time when beaten into second place by the rising young star Viscount in the Group 3 Skyline Stakes before splitting his stablesmates Ha Ha and Red Hannigan in the 2001 Golden Slipper on a memorable day for the Waterhouse stable.
Despite placing in several stakes races including the group 1 The Galaxy, Excellerator went winless in six starts at three. But he took little time opening his account at four. He captured the Listed Cameron Handicap at Newcastle before a close up second to Defier in the Group 1 George Main Stakes at Randwick. Behind him that day were Sunline, Lonhro and Shogun Lodge.
At his next start Excellerator was finally rewarded with an elusive Group 1 victory when he strolled home in the Epsom Handicap. It proved to be his final win. Despite remaining competitive at the highest level he retired some 17 months later following a fourth to Starcraft in the Group 1 Chipping Norton Stakes.
Artless was 15-years old when purchased by Karreman. She produced colts by Zabeel (2004) and Traditionally (2006) before producing a filly by The Oaks stud resident stallion Darci Brahma in September 2008. Artless died on New Years Day, 2009.
Dick Karreman kept the filly, named her Artistic and put her in training with Shaune Ritchie.
At Trentham on Saturday Artistic nosed out her more favoured stablemate Zurella in the Group 1 Wellfield New Zealand Oaks. Both fillies grew up together at The Oaks and are owned by Karreman.
Artistic credited her sire Darci Brahma (pictured) with his first Group 1 winner.She has already bagged two Listed wins in the Sunline Stakes and Bonecrusher Stakes.
Rick Williams, long time manager of The Oaks Stud said it was a dream result for the farm.
"This is just huge for us," Williams said. "Personally, this is the greatest moment of my life in breeding and racing and it's great for Dick, he puts so much into this industry.
"When I saw them coming down the straight I didn't care, but it's nice that the Darci Brahma filly won."