The Tattersalls December foal sale posted an opening-day record for total sales, topped by a Champs Elysees colt for 160,000 guineas ($272,462 in United States funds), the highest price ever at the first session.
Overall, 194 foals sold for 2,138,400 guineas ($3,641,459), an unprecedented total for day one of the four-day foal auction, and a 21.9% rise on the opening session in 2012.
The average of 11,023 guineas ($18,770) and median of 7,000 guineas ($11,920) were up 62% and 7.7%, respectively. The clearance rate improved from 69.2% at last year's corresponding session to 75%.
The session-topping colt by Juddmonte freshman sire Champs Elysees was knocked down to Stauffenberg Bloodstock Services for a pinhooking syndicate. Offered by Plumton Hall Stud on behalf of a partnership, he is to be sent Germany and will be offered for sale as a yearling.
The colt's catalog page got a significant boost in October when 2-year-old half sister Al Thakhira won the Rockfel Stakes (Eng-II) at Newmarket following her debut victory the previous month. The Dubawi filly started as the 6-1 third favorite in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (gr. IT) earlier this month, but was squeezed back at the start and then eased late in an unplaced finish.
"He is a very correct foal and was my pick of the day--if not the week," Philipp Graf Stauffenberg said following his purchase of the youngster out of the Green Desert mare Dahama.
The British-bred colt was bought in utero at the 2012 Tattersalls December mare sale, where Bruce Perry Bloodstock purchased Dahama for 21,000 guineas ($33,623) on behalf of Antony Thompson of prominent Australian operation Widden Stud.
"We originally bought Dahama to take back home," Thompson said. "But then with this colt's half sister (Al Thakhira) doing what she has we had a change of plan and left her here. He is a lovely horse, but I have to thank Eric Cantillon of Plumton Hall for producing him so well.
Champs Elysees, a 10-year-old son of Danehill out of elite broodmare Hasili, currently ranks sixth on the Racing Post's first-crop sire list. Canada's 2009 Horse of the Year and a multiple U.S. grade I winner, he stands at Juddmonte Farms' Banstead Manor Stud near Newmarket.
The day's second-highest price was 48,000 guineas ($81,738) for Flintstone Stud's colt from the highly anticipated first crop of 2011 Irish Two Thousand (Ire-I) victor Roderic O'Connor.
Out of winning Cadeaux Genereux mare Robema, the colt was knocked down to Ballyhane Stud's Joe Foley standing with bloodstock agent Hugo Merry, and was acquired for a partnership that includes Indian billionaire Cyrus Poonawalla. The dam is a half sister to Italian stakes winner Lucky Chappy, who was grade I-placed in the U.S.
The Tattersalls December foal sale continues Nov. 28 in Newmarket, beginning at 9.30 a.m. at Park Paddocks.