Records tumbled at Tattersalls' 18th annual breeze-up sale in Newmarket, England, with the 625,000 guineas for a Green Desert colt being the highest amount ever paid at a European 2-year-olds in training auction.
A fantastic two-evening trade April 19-20 saw a 70% rise in gross to 10.7 million guineas, a record figure, as were the 73,034 guineas average and the 50,000 guineas median, both up 43%. There were 28 six-figure lots, compared to 19 the previous year.
The sale topper, bred Dr. Tony Ryan of Castleton Lyons, had been bought 'in utero' inside his dam, group III Park Hill Stakes winner Alexander Three D, for $1.7 million at Keeneland's 2003 November Sale.
Katsumi Yoshida of Northern Farm in Japan purchased the colt, after beating off plenty of opposition, who surpassed Tattersalls' breeze-up record of 500,000 guineas, and will either race solely for Yoshida or in a partnership involving the owner.
"He was the one we really wanted," said Northern Farm manager Hiroaki Akita after signing the buyer's ticket. "We were very impressed by his work and he is strong behind with a great punch, that's what we really liked. He won't be pushed at all and we haven't decided on a trainer yet."
Veteran breeze-up consignor Willie Browne of Mocklershill Stables in County Tipperary, Ireland, consigned the Green Desert colt and the sale's top four lots. He was comfortably the week's top vendor, receiving 3,079,000 guineas for 19 lots sold.
Newmarket agency Blandford Bloodstock -- run by Richard Brown and Tom Goff -- was the leading purchaser with nine lots bought for 752,000 guineas.
Brown paid 280,000 guineas for a colt from Danehill's final crop on
behalf of New Jersey-based Ahmed Zayat (from the Mocklershill draft). The colt, bought for $140,000 at Keeneland, will be the 14th horse Zayat has in training in Britain, spread between trainers Michael Bell, Neville Callaghan, John Gosden, Jeremy Noseda, and David Simcock.
Ireland's buoyant economy made its presence felt with County Kildare property developer Dermot O'Rourke, who bought Plantation Stud in Newmarket last year, spending 400,000 guineas on a Rock Of Gibraltar Colt -- a 165,000-guineas Tattersalls purchase last year -- who will join British trainer Henry Cecil, while County Meath trainer Ger Lyons, acting
for new Galway farm Glenview House Stud, spent 390,000 guineas on a Galileo colt bought back at Keeneland for $130,000 in 2005. Both were consigned by Mocklershill.
The workouts by the 2-year-olds on the day before the sale were not officially timed and varied considerably in their tempo.