A colt by Malibu Moon
consigned by Wavertree Stables (Ciaran Dunne), agent, sold to Willis Horton for $250,000 to top the opening session of Ocala Breeders' Sales Co.'s June sale of 2-year-olds in training and horses of racing age June 17.
For the session, 164 horses generated total sales of $5,044,700, compared with 231 selling for a total of $7,109,700 at last year's first session. The $30,760 average was nearly identical to the $30,778 average in the opening session in 2013 while the median price rose 12.5% from $20,000 a year ago to $22,500.
The buyback percentage was 30.8%; it was 21.7% last year.
Randy Bradshaw, deputizing for Horton's trainer, D. Wayne Lukas, signed the ticket on the session-topping Malibu Moon colt (Hip 196), who breezed an eighth of a mile in :10 3/5 at the under tack preview and will join Lukas' string at Churchill Downs.
"Wayne liked this horse as a yearling," noted Bradshaw, a former assistant trainer for Lukas. "He'll ship to Churchill."
Produced from the multiple graded stakes-winning Thunder Gulch mare Stylish, an earner of $588,227, the bay colt was bred in Kentucky by Malibu Farm.
Kate Sheehan acquired the colt for $150,000 at the Keeneland September yearling sale, where he was consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency on behalf of his breeder.
Hip 148, Avenue of Art, a bay colt by Artie Schiller
—Sookloozy, by Avenue of Flags, fetched the second-highest price of the day on a final bid of $220,000 from Ernie Semersky and Dory Newell's Conquest Stables.
Trainer Mark Casse signed the ticket for the colt, who zipped a furlong in the co-fastest time of :10 at the first under-tack preview.
"We love Artie Schiller," said Casse. "We are going to Del Mar this summer, and he seems like a good fit."
Consigned by Eddie Woods, agent, the colt was bred in California by Donald Newcomb. Quarter Pole Enterprises bought the colt as a yearling for $95,000 at the Barretts October yearling sale, where he was consigned by Sam Hendricks, agent for Walking G Ranch.
Conquest Stables and Casse have an affinity for the offspring of WinStar stallion Artie Schiller, especially after their success with My Conquestadory
. That daughter of Artie Schiller, bought for $240,000 at last year's OBS March sale of select 2-year-olds in training, rattled off back-to-back graded stakes wins to begin her career, including a facile score in the 2013 Darley Alcibiades Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland
Most recently, Casse sent out Majestic Sunset
, a 3-year-old son of Artie Schiller owned by John Oxley, to a second-place finish in the Plate Trial Stakes June 15 at Woodbine
, where he was beaten by Artie Schiller's We Miss Artie
, a horse Casse was the underbidder on at the 2012 Keeneland September sale.
Hip 44, a Curlin
colt consigned by Top Line Sales, agent, sold to Sheikh Abdullah S. Almaddah for $170,000. The chestnut colt is out of the Broad Brush mare Rockintotherhythm, a half sister to graded stakes winner Haka
Consigned by Claiborne Farm, agent for breeders Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings and Indian Springs Farm, to the 2013 Keeneland September sale, the Kentucky-bred colt was purchased by Thoroughbred Management for $55,000.
He was entered in Fasig-Tipton's Florida sale at Adena Springs South in March, but was scratched from that sale when a flake in an ankle was discovered after he breezed an eighth in :10 1/5 over the training track at Adena Springs.
"We got the flake taken care of and he's doing great," said Jimbo Gladwell of Top Line Sales, following the colt's co-bullet breeze in :10 for an eighth of a mile ahead of the June sale. "He has been a straightforward colt all along. He has a lot of talent, and he's really matured (since the Florida sale)."
Hip 126, a dark bay or brown colt by Bullsbay
consigned by Casse Sales LLC (Justin Casse), sold to Magnolia Mountain Bloodstock for $115,000.
Out of Sister Dyer, by Pulpit, a daughter of graded stakes winner Belterra, the colt worked a quarter in :21 3/5 at the under tack preview.
Steven Young, agent, went to $110,000 for Hip 72, Miss Indigo Star, a daughter of Candy Ride
consigned by New Episode Training Center, Inc., agent.
The top-priced filly of the session worked an eighth in :10 1/5, and is out of Saracina, by Bertrando, from the family of graded stakes winner Daloma.
The June sale continues June 18 at 10:30 a.m. EDT and will be streamed live at bloodhorse.com/OBS