Reg Inglis and crew, take a bow.
Between them, the weather, the vendors and the buyers, a new era dawned in Australia as the record-breaking 2006 Australian Easter yearling sale concluded at Newmarket on Thursday, posting across the board gains in all categories to become the most successful yearling sale ever held in Australia.
And yet another handful of million plus babies were purchased headed by Coolmore's Demi O'Byrne buying the full-sister to Australian Champion Alinghi (Encosta de Lago --Oceanfast) for Aust$2.6million (U.S.$1,930,000). She was presented by Yarraman Park who led the way on averages by a farm at just on Aust$900,000 and also provided the top three in the sale.
The Aust$117,130,000 (U.S.$87,039,682) gross was a massive 29% up on last year's previous all-time record, which is simply remarkable in view of the streamlined catalogue. As this happened, the average leapt a huge 40% to Aust$288,497 (U.S.$214,359).
It was breathtaking theatre, the likes of which you generally only see at Keeneland in September. All the top buyers turned up and basked in the always sunny 95 degrees of Australia's fall weather.
Yet while Redoute's Choice had completely dominated the sale on so many levels – and will do so globally too – he took a back seat on day three.
His arch rival Encosta de Lago (by Fairy King) was responsible for the top price while little known US bred and raced sire Secret Savings (Seeking The Gold) shocked all by producing the second highest. It was a gorgeous full-sister to racetrack star and Gr 1 winner Shamekha, and leading trainer Gai Waterhouse bought her for Aust $2.2 million.
A total of 14 yearlings made in excess of Aust$1,000,000 (U.S.$745,000) compared to eight at last year's sale, while the three days produced two landmark records set when a Redoute's Choice colt brought a new Australian record $3million, while an Encosta De Lago filly became the highest priced female ever to sell at an Australasian yearling sale, fetching day three's Aust$2.6 million.
In all, after three day's trade 406 yearlings had found new homes for an excellent clearance rate of 90%.
William Inglis & Son Managing Director Reg Inglis was over the moon: "This has been absolutely amazing it is the greatest sale ever held in this part of the world, after the first day it was so successful we knew it would continue."
Sire sensation Redoute's Choice was undoubtedly the star of the show accounting for six of the 14 million dollar lots, with 35 youngsters selling for a breathtaking average of Aust$710,857 (U.S$528,130).
"Redoute's Choice is an incredible stallion," said Inglis. "He brought everyone to the sale and those that couldn't buy one stayed on and bought others. The whole sale is a huge credit to our vendors."
Yarraman Park Stud in the Hunter, for years a good home of quality yearlings but never the standout benchmark, sold the three top-lots, which was an unbelievable achievement.
"We've always been traders," said Yarraman's Arthur Mitchell. "We've been selling since 1970 and every dog has its day I guess.
"We knew from inspections at the farm that we had two good colts and Alinghi's sister, actually, there had been a lot of expectation about that filly - I thought she'd bring two-million before the sale, but it's been a pretty nerve racking time waiting for her to go through."
For the final session, 157 yearlings changed hands for a gross of Aust$47,015,000 and an average of Aust$299,459.
Thursday 20th April 2006