Point Given Colt Tops Fasig-Tipton Opener; All Numbers Up

Point Given Colt Tops Fasig-Tipton Opener; All Numbers Up
Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt
Point Given colt, sold for $475,000.
By Ron Mitchell and
Deirdre Biles

A chestnut colt from the first crop of Horse of the Year Point Given   was purchased by trainer Bob Baffert for $475,000 to top Monday's opening session of the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky summer yearling sale in Lexington, Ky.

Produced from the winning Lord at War mare Pretty Eyes, the colt was consigned by Gainesway Farm. As a weanling, the colt was purchased by South Gate Farm for $130,000 at the 2003 Keeneland November sale.

"He was a lovely colt," said Gainesway president Antony Beck, who credited Brian Graves with preparing the colt for sale. "He had a lot of athleticism."

Baffert, who trained Point Given, declined to say who would own the colt.

"I have to support the horse," Baffert said of the sire. "Point Given was one of the best horses I have ever trained. He (yearling) looked a lot like him (Point Given). Now it's just matter of hoping he has it (talent)."

Gainesway's Michael Hernon said the price exceeded the farm's expectations, noting "the market is very responsive to first crop stallions. Point Given was a top racehorse and this horse had a lot of quality. All the major players were in on him and he's an excellent prospect."

With one of the largest crowds the FTK summer sale has attracted in years on hand, most of the first day of the sale was devoted to a "New Sire Showcase" in which the yearlings offered were sired by first-crop or young sires. The Point Given colt, however, was sold as part of the open session once the New Sire Showcase ended.

Fasig-Tipton reported the gross receipts rose 19%, the average price was up 7%, and the median price increased 31%. There were 169 horses sold Monday for a gross of $16,744,000, an average price of $99,077, and a median of $80,000. There were 56 horses not sold. At the comparable session one year ago, 152 horses brought a total of $14,078,000, an average of $92,618, and a median price of $61,000. The 56 horses not sold Monday represented an RNA rate of 23.8%, compared with a figure of 30% on the first day in 2003 when 66 yearlings did not meet their reserves.

"There was across-the-board strength," said FTK president Walt Robertson, noting that the numbers should improve during Tuesday's second session because the offerings have better pedigrees are good-looking individuals. "We had a lot more trainers here this year than last."

The session's second-highest price of $470,000 was paid for a Fusaichi Pegasus filly initially listed as not sold.

The filly, consigned by Bluewater Sales, was initially listed as RNA ("reserve not attained") for $470,000 after a group of agents that included Aisling Cross of Ashford Stud and Guy Armengol signed the ticket. Shortly afterward, Fasig-Tipton reported that the filly had been sold to Jeffrey and Francesca Cooper for $470,000. The Coopers reside in Illinois, where Jeffrey Cooper is an attorney. The Coopers, who bought 2-year-olds and yearlings earlier this year, were the immediate underbidders at $460,000 when the filly went through the ring. The Coopers are advised by Michael Levy, husband of Meg Levy, who operates Bluewater Sales.

Third-highest price of $450,000 was paid by a Californian attending her first horse sale in Kentucky when she went to that level to acquire a Forest Camp colt. The new horse owner, Sasha Borland, was brought to the sale by her father, John Connelly, who was accompanied by trainer Baffert. Baffert trains the first and only horse owned by Connely, an attorney. Borland, who described herself as a "stay-at-home mom", said the sale lived up to her expectations. She said her family is involved in ranching in Orland, California.

Consigned by Brereton C. Jones' Airdrie Stud, the colt was produced from the Copelan mare Cope's Light, the dam of grade III winner Political Attack and stakes winner Zillah the Hun.

Baffert, who trained Forest Camp during the early part of his career, said the colt reminded him a lot of the sire. "He looked a lot like his sire," Baffert said. "He (Forest Camp) was a sensational racehorse. He was a very talented horse."

Trained by Baffert to win the Del Mar Futurity (gr. II), Forest Camp is represented by his first crop as yearlings this year.

Results, Fasig-Tipton Kentucky summer yearling sale, July 19

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