While the results of Overbrook Farm’s offerings at the Keeneland January sale weren’t exactly earth shattering, when added to its totals from last September and November, the farm’s dispersal, handled by Eaton Sales, still goes down as one of the most significant of all time for the Lexington-based sale company.
Founded by the late William T. Young, Overbrook announced last summer it would completely disperse its horses due to a lack of passion for the business by Young’s son, Bill Young Jr.
At the January sale Overbrook sold nine horses for a total of $202,000. Two horses were withdrawn because of vet issues and will be sold at Keeneland’s September yearling sale.
“I thought they sold well enough,” said Overbrook’s key consultant Ric Waldman. “We weren’t looking for any home runs. You never know when you put a horse through the sale without a reserve how it’s going to be received, especially in a lesser market. But we were pleased with the results of the (January) sale.”
Overbrook’s highest-priced horse at the January sale was a 2-year-old colt by Smart Strike —Surfside, by Seattle Slew, which BBA Ireland bought for $45,000.
At the Keeneland November sale, the 148 mares, weanlings, and racing and stallion prospects from the Overbrook dispersal grossed $31,760,000. Topping the sale was the 4-year-old winning Storm Cat filly Honest Pursuit, who was bought for $3.1-million by brothers Alain and Gerard Wertheimer.
At the September sale, Overbrook’s 51 yearlings that went through the ring, including 50% of four foal shares, brought a collective $6,504,000, according to farm figures. When combined, the dispersal ranks as the second-largest in Keeneland history, with 208 horses finding new homes for a total of $38,466,000.
“All in all in the (Overbrook) dispersal, we were very pleased given the lack of participation from some of the big buyers, and given the market and the uncertainty, I think the results were rewarding,” said Waldman.
Only the Nelson Bunker Hunt dispersal which sold 580 horses for $46,912,800 during the 1988 Keeneland January sale, ranks higher. Following closely behind were the Hermitage Farm dispersal, which sold 130 horses for $32,676,500 in November 1987; and Issam Fares’ Fares Farm dispersal, which brought $26,805,400 in November 1998.
While Fasig-Tipton hasn’t had a dispersal close to Overbrook’s caliber in many years, the Newstead Farm Trust dispersal at the 1985 November sale, which included 42 horses and 20 stallion shares, is still known for its gross receipts of $46,988,000. The sale was topped by the record $7-million bid for grade I winner Miss Oceana, who was in foal to Northern Dancer. Excluding stallion shares, the 42 mares and their progeny sold for $37,186,000.
Another notable Fasig-Tipton dispersal occurred in September and November of 1987, when the Tartan Farms/John Nerud horses fetched $31,268,500.
In addition, the dispersal of Eugene Klein’s stock, which took place at both Keeneland and Fasig-Tipton in 1989, had gross receipts of $29,623,000.