A foal from Giant's Causeway's first-crop again provided the highlight at Saturday's final session of the Tattersalls December Foal Sales in Newmarket, England when Coolmore principal John Magnier signaled the successful 400,000 guineas bid for an easy-moving filly produced from the Dancing Brave mare Soha.
The half-sister to St James's Palace Stakes third Gold Academy (Royal Academy) had many admirers but few got a look in. Peter Doyle and John McCormack made the early running but as Doyle dropped out, Cheveley Park Stud owner David Thompson came in at 290,000 guineas although it was McCormack who came out second best to Magnier. Demi O'Byrne signed the ticket and said that the filly would most likely race for Magnier and partner Michael Tabor. "She was a lovely filly - a great walker with outstanding conformation," said O'Byrne. Tom Gaffney's Churchtown House Stud in Co. Cork, Ireland, both bred and consigned the filly.
A full-brother to last year's Poule d'Essai des Pouliches heroine Rose Gypsy (Green Desert) will reappear in next year's Tattersalls Houghton Sale after Seamus Burns, proprietor of Lodge Park Stud in Ireland, saw off Timmy Hyde at 320,000 guineas. The colt, offered by Collin Stud for Haydock Park Stud, will reappear at next year's Tattersalls Houghton Sale. "I thought he was the nicest foal in the sale and would cost more than that," said Burns.
With records for aggregate of 17,247,700 guineas, average of 29,483 guineas, median of 14,000 guineas -- and individual price of 1.8 millions for Friday's Galileo half-sister -- Tattersalls officials were understandably delighted with the week.
Tattersalls chairman Edmond Mahony commented: "The success or otherwise of the December Foal Sale is always heavily influenced by what has gone before at the yearling sales, and we had certainly received plenty of encouragement from all of our yearling sales including the hugely successful December Yearling Sale at the beginning of this week.
"In particular the pinhookers have enjoyed a good year and this has been very apparent throughout the four days of foals, with intense competition at all levels of the market from start to finish.
"Obviously the highlight was the world record 1,800,000 guineas paid by Charlotte Weber's Florida based Live Oak Stud for the Giant's Causeway filly out of Urban Sea, but there was a lot more to this sale than just one spectacular transaction, with 25 foals breaking the six -figure barrier and 85 making 50,000 guineas or more. In addition we have had new records for turnover, average and median."
The December Sales continue Monday with the first of
four breeding-stock days.COMPARATIVE FIGURES
TATTERSALLS DECEMBER FOAL TOTALS
Year/Number Offered/Number Sold/Gross (Guineas) /Average(Guineas)/Median (Guineas)/