Ferguson bid $10.7 million and O'Byrne nodded at $11 million. Ferguson came right back at $11.2 million, O'Byrne went to $11.5 million, and Ferguson then made the final bid of $11.7 million.
The $11.7 million price tag made the colt the second most expensive yearling ever to sell at Keeneland. The highest price ever for a yearling was $13.1 million for a half-brother to Seattle Slew by Nijinsky II sold at the 1985 Keeneland summer sale. That auction, held in July, is no longer conducted. The flashy son of Kingmambo became the highest-priced yearling ever sold in September, passing the $9.7 million Storm Cat colt sold last year and also bought by Ferguson for Sheikh Mohammed. "I knew he was a nice horse but never knew anything like this would happen," Burleson said. "It's an indescribable feeling. "He has always been a nice horse, and he vetted very well." Burleson said Crown of Crimson was purchased privately off the racetrack and bloodstock agent Reynolds Bell Jr., adviser to Jayeff B, selected the mating. Crown of Crimson died after foaling a Storm Cat colt this year. The colt survived.Burleson formerly worked for Lakland, going out on his own this year."Sheikh Mohammed always knew he was going to be the number one horse in the sale," Ferguson said. The colt's full brother, Ashaawes, was purchased for $2,850,000 by Sheikh Hamdan's Shadwell at the 2004 September sale.Earlier in the day, Ferguson again outbid the Coolmore group for a colt from Danzig's last crop hammered down for $9.2 million. The Danzig colt was bred and sold by Gary Knapp's Monticule and is out of the Deputy Minister mare Sharp Minister."I thought he would sell exceptionally well. We showed him about 120 times. All the people who buy really fine horses were looking at him," Knapp said. "Once you get to a certain point and see the two people who really want the horse, you know it is going to realize a nice price. You just get really lucky. I had a price in mind, but this far exceeded it," Knapp said. "(The colt) has an absolute magnificent physical frame and has the heart to move that frame." Knapp still owns Sharp Minister, who produced a Fusaichi Pegasus colt this year and is in foal to Elusive Quality . He purchased the mare at the 2000 Keeneland November sale for $220,000 in foal to Joyeux Dancer.Despite being shut out on the top two prices of the day, the Coolmore team did manage to score when they purchased a son of Danzig for $5.2 million from the consignment of Shack Parrish's Indian Creek.The colt was bred in Kentucky by Bjorn Nielsen, who is from Connecticut. The mare was in England, where she had been barren for two straight years. She was shipped to the United States, and Neilsen purchased a no-guarantee season to Danzig. "He has always been a nice colt," Parrish said. "This is another score for the little guy."The sale continues Wednesday, with the session beginning at 10 a.m.Leading Sires: Session Two