The first major yearling sale in Europe begins Aug. 17 in the coastal French village of Deauville, where 512 horses have been entered. The first two days of the four-day sale are select sessions.
This sale had suffered for three years of decline until 2006, when the French market suddenly became re-energized. A factor may have been the formation of a new sales conglomerate, Arqana, which absorbed the previous sale operator Agence Francaise. There may also have been a genuine boost in confidence in the French bloodstock market, which resulted in a 36% increase in gross sales to more than $38 million. The average and median also enjoyed double-digit increases to $104,360 and $73,128, respectively.
The top tier of the market was up overall, with 10 horses selling for 300,000 euros ($376,866) or more, compared with six in 2005, and six horses selling for 500,000 euros ($628,1000) compared with only two the previous year.
Among the top horses being sold is hip 48, a bay filly by Dynaformer out of the multiple graded stakes winner mare Randaroo, who raced from 2 to 4 in the United States and won the First Flight Handicap (gr. II), Top Flight Handicap (gr. II), and the Distaff Breeders’ Cup Handicap (gr. II). Another to watch is a filly (hip 102) by Mr. Greeley out the stakes-placed mare Boubskaia, who has produced group stakes winners Daneskaya and Silverskaya in addition to Winstar Distaff Handicap winner Mumtaz.
The catalog is available online at www.arqana.com.