The gross revenue and average price increased significantly during the yearling and mixed sale conducted Tuesday by the British Columbia division of the Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society.
"Horsemen are beginning to see 'a light at the end of the tunnel' with the possibility of slots at Hastings closer to becoming a reality," said the division's president, Dixie Jacobsen, in explaining the increases. "The latest improvements at Hastings have also impressed those who have recently returned to the facility."
The CTHS (BC division) reported that 114 horses were sold for a gross of $1,210,400 ($889,547 in U.S. funds) and an average of $10,618 ($7,803). Compared to a year ago, the gross grew 37.3% while the average advanced 33.7%. In 2002, the 111 horses that sold grossed $881,800 and averaged $7,944. The buy-back rate increased from 27.9% last year to 32.5% this year.
"It was a very strong sale, with good, positive action on quality horses," said Mel Snow, a local executive of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association. "People are anticipating the industry moving in an upward direction in the future and are willing to invest again."
A yearling Doneraile Court -- Aly's Dearest filly brought the top price of $55,000 ($40,668). A half-sister to stakes winner Hammersmith (by On Target), she was purchased by Ralph Bodine from Tod Mtn. Thoroughbreds, agent.
The sale was held at the Thunderbird Show Park in Langley, British Columbia.