Steady demand for quality horses was reflected by an 88.5% clearance rate through the first two days of Australia's Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale when the second session of the six-day auction closed Jan. 9.
Two tied for the day's highest price of $400,000 ($355,665 in United States funds): an Exceed And Excel colt and a Fastnet Rock filly.
Cumulative total sales stood at $41,007,500 ($36,457,593), up 13.5% compared with the first two days in 2012, while average price ($133,575) on 307 horses sold remained static. Median price is up 14.3% to $120,000 ($106,617).
"It is quite incredible," Magic Millions managing director Vin Cox said at the conclusion of the second session. "With a clearance rate sitting at 88.5%, it is quite astounding.
"We have a job to do, which is to get as many good horses as we can in the sale and then sell them as best we can and hope that the vendors are happy with what they are getting and buyers are equally as happy to purchase whatever price that may be."
Young New Zealand-based bloodstock agent Glen Harvey teamed with veteran horseman Paul Moroney to secure the co-session topping Fastnet Rock filly out of the consignment of Newgate Farm, which offered her on behalf of Western Australia's Gold Front Breeding operation.
The filly is the second foal out of the group III-winning Giant's Causeway
mare Awesome Planet, who finished third in the 2008 New Zealand Oaks (NZ-I). The family includes English classic winner and sire Dr Devious, Irish champion sprinter and sire Archway, and Japanese group I winner and sire Shinko King.
"We absolutely loved her," Moroney said. "I thought she was probably the best filly of the sale on pedigree and type."
"She's a lovely athlete who stood over ground. Whatever she looks like now, in another twelve months she's going to be a big, strong filly."
Offspring of Coolmore shuttler Fastnet Rock brought two of the day's top five prices. Newgate Farm, agent for Victoria's Morning Rise Stud, also sold a filly out of the stakes-winning Lonhro mare Black Minx to Segenhoe Stud for the third-highest price of $390,000 ($346,507).
Sun Bloodstock landed the Burnewang North Pastoral's co-session topping son of Darley's reigning champion sire Exceed And Excel. The youngster is out of the unraced Marscay mare Dubai Dream.
The bay colt is the sixth foal from his dam and is a half brother to group II-placed stakes winner Al Dhafra and two other winners. Dubai Dream is a half sister to two stakes winners, including multiple group-placed Regal Crown.
"We see that the pedigree is very good," said Sun Bloodstock's Australian chief executive Alvin Lui. "We see him as a potential stallion."
The colt will be trained by Gai Waterhouse.
The demand for offspring by Yarraman Park Stud's leading freshman season sire I Am Invincible continued. Through two days, the son of Invincible Spirit leads the sale's sire list by average price, three or more sold, at $254,000 ($225,674).
The Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale continues with the third session Jan. 10, starting at 11 a.m. in Queensland.