Anne M. Eberhardt

Keeneland Sale Continues Remarkable Roll

The 2013 auction overall has an average price of $118,234, up 28.5% from last year.

Keeneland's September yearling sale in Lexington continued its remarkable roll Sept. 19 as its 10th session posted more strong numbers.

A pair of $160,000 colts sold for the session's highest price. They were Hip 2964, a Ghostzapper Island Lore colt from the Paramount Sales agency, and Hip 3153, a Majesticperfection Thoughtful colt from the Mill Ridge Sales consignment.

Cromwell Bloodstock picked up the Ghostzapper colt, whose Cozzene dam set a one-mile course record of 1:35.53 at Laurel Park back in 2005. The Ghostzapper colt, a May 16 foal bred in Kentucky by James Witherspoon, is a half brother to three winners, two of whichJerry n' Elvis and Mrmackmanhave won or placed this year. Hidden Brook, agent, bought the colt by first-crop sire Majesticperfection. The March 16 foal, bred in Kentucky by Lucy Bassett, is a half brother to stakes winner Meditations.

Majesticperfection, who stands at Airdrie Stud in Kentucky, was the day's leading sire by gross, with six yearlings bringing $374,000, and Adena Springs stallion Ghostzapper led by average (three or more sold) with a trio of horses averaging $73,333.

Thursday's session sold 291 yearlings for $9,038,600, yielding a $31,060 average and a $25,000 median.  The gross more than doubled from last year's 10th-session gross of $3,937,500 for 225 horses. The 2013 average and median were up 77.4% and 78.5%, respectively, from last year's numbers. Buybacks were 14.4%, as compared to last year's exceptionally low 8.5%.

Keeneland reformatted the September sale this year, extending its select sessions from one to four. That makes year-to-year comparisons of individual sessions inexact. The more informative comparison is to compare the cumulative figures through each year's first 10 days.

Through Thursday, the 2013 auction overall has an average price of $118,234, up 28.5% from last year's 10-day average of $91,973. The sale's current 10-day median also is up, climbing 30% from last year's $50,000 to $65,000 Sept. 19.

To date, the 2013 auction has grossed $273,475,100 for 2,313 yearlings, easily running ahead of last year's total of $219,723,000 for the entire 11-day auction.

Through the first 10 days, the 2013 sale's buyback rate stands at 21.1%, edging up from last year's 19.8% at the same point.

At a session that saw a broad buying base, prominent pinhookers Eisaman Equine topped the list of buyers by gross at Thursday's session. The Florida-based operation paid $251,000 for seven yearlings, led by a $50,000 filly by first-crop sire Warrior's Reward . Warrendale Sales, agent, was the consignor.

Paramount Sales, which offered the $160,000 Ghostzapper colt, was the day's leading vendor by total sales after making $805,000 from its 19 yearlings to sell, just outstripping Brandywine's $801,500 total for 23 horses.

The Keeneland September yearling sale will continue through Sept. 21 with sessions starting each day at 10 a.m. in Lexington.