The second and final day of Fasig-Tipton Kentucky's selected yearling sale drew a slightly smaller crowd than day one, but all the right people were there. And they stayed until the last horse -- an attractive bay son of Carson City -- left the stage.
Their persistence resulted in a 25.5% increase in the overall sale average and a 27% increase in the sale median. For the two days combined, 237 horses sold for a total of $23,148,000 and an average of $97,671. Last year, 336 horses sold for a gross of $26,146,500 and an average of $77,817. The median price for the sale was $71,000 compared to $55,000 for the 2000 sale.
"Our team put strapping, good-looking horses in the sale, and the crowd stayed to the end," said Walt Robertson, Fasig-Tipton president.
Thursday's sale-topper was a heavy-muscled and smooth-striding son of Meadowlake, out of Tom's Annie (by Storm Cat), who sold for $500,000 to Saudi Arabian Prince Ahmed Salman's Thoroughbred Corp. Hill 'n' Dale Farm of Kentucky bred and sold the colt.
"I could see him winning the Breeders' Cup Sprint," Salman said after outbidding timber industrialist Aaron Jones for the colt. "I'm an optimist. He was my pick of the sale. He was the best horse."
The colt will be broken and trained in California, then sent to trainer Bob Baffert who also trains Salman's top horse Point Given, winner of this year's Preakness (gr. I) and Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
Thursday's highest priced filly was a chestnut daughter of Gulch out of Knoosh (by Storm Bird) that was purchased for $300,000 by Tim McMurry of Darby Dan Bloodstock. The filly was bought as a racing prospect for an undisclosed client.
"We are buying for people who want to race and have some residual value," McMurry said. "She is exactly what we're looking for--a good physical and a good pedigree."
The Gulch filly was owned and bred by Jim and Mary Ann Squires' Two Bucks Farm in Versailles, Ky., and sold through the Bluewater Sales agency.
The sale topper for the entire sale was a $625,000 chestnut colt by Dehere out of Afleet's Gold (by Afleet) who was bought by Irish bloodstock agent Paul Collins. He bought the colt for Bobby Killoran, a businessman who lives in Ireland but has multiple business interests in England.
Collins' purchase exceeded last year's sale topping price of $525,000 paid for a son of Unbridled. The colt was bought by Cimmaron Stable, an ownership group made up of friends of Saudi Arabian Prince Ahmed Salman, who owns Preakness (gr. I) and Belmont Stakes (gr. I) winner Point Given.
"We just really liked him as an individual, plus he's got a great family," Collins said about the Dehere colt.
The Dehere colt was consigned by the Summerfield Sales Agency of Florida for owners John and Susan Sykes, who own a 1,000-acre breeding and training farm Cloverleaf Farms II north of Ocala, Fla. Maryland horsemen Marshall and Ginger Silverman owned the majority interest in the Wild Rush colt they sold. The colt was owned in-part by three other partners.
Topping the filly ranks for the sale was a daughter of Dance Brightly out of Bestofbothaccounts (by Private Account) who sold for $325,000 to Kentucky businessman and Thoroughbred breeder Tracy Farmer. The filly is among the first crop of yearlings for Dance Brightly, a son of Canadian champion Dance Smartly, and was consigned by Dromoland Farm of Lexington, Ky.