Following the record-setting trend of this year's juvenile market, the Adena Springs auction generated its highest ever figures for gross revenue, average price, and median price Thursday during its third edition. In addition, the sale produced its most expensive horse ever, a $310,000 daughter of Silver Charm
"I think it went well," said Adena Springs owner Frank Stronach. "Like always, the ones that look great sell for a lot of money. The ones that are a little off sell for a little less."
The gross for the 57 2-year-olds in training sold at Adena Springs South near Ocala, Fla., was $2,228,000, up 14.4% from last year when 62 were sold. The average of $39,088 represented an increase of 24.4%. The median was $27,000. The buy-back rate fell from 17.3% to 14.9%, with only 10 of the 67 horses offered failing to find new homes.
Clients of New York-based trainer John Kimmel purchased the sale's two highest-priced horses. Bidding over the phone, George Bolton of California bought the record-setting Silver Charm filly. The immediate underbidders were J.B. and Kevin McKathan. Chester Broman, whose homebred Friends Lake captured the March 13 Florida Derby (gr. I), acquired a $250,000 Awesome Again colt.
The Silver Charm filly is the first foal out of the multiple grade II winner Classy Cara (by General Meeting
), who finished third in the 2000 Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) and Santa Anita Oaks(gr. I).
"She's a classy filly with a lot of pedigree appeal," Kimmel said. "She's also a pretty fresh horse, and I got good reports (from key people who work at Adena Springs) that she might be a special kind of filly."
The Awesome Again colt is out of 1991 Astoria Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III) winner Forever Land (by Badger Land). He is a half-brother to 1999 Canadian Oaks and Fury Stakes winner Touch Dial (by Phone Trick
"He vetted well, and he's got a good pedigree," Kimmel said.
The trainer liked the fact that the Adena Springs horses only galloped before the sale and didn't breeze.
"There are 2-year-olds that breeze fast, and that is the best day of their lives," Kimmel said. "They never really amount to much and have many physical problems. We're also didn't have to pay retail plus for these horses. In a breeze show, if a horse goes down there in :21 and change, you've got to pay twice as much (as they're worth)."
Prior to this year, the sale's record high price was the $120,000 amount brought by two horses in 2003. The previous records for gross and average were last year's figures of $1,947,500 and $31,411, respectively. The former high mark for the median was $20,000, which dated back to 2002.
In all, four 2-year-olds brought six-figure prices this year, equaling the sale record. In addition to the horses purchased by Kimmel's clients, the expensive group consisted of a $140,000 Wild Rush -- Vivid Angel colt that was sold to California trainer Wesley Ward, and a $100,000 Touch Gold
-- Glory in Motion colt that went to Jockey Club Farm, agent.