The select portion of New Zealand Bloodstock's National yearling sales series concluded Feb. 1 at Karaka with declines in total sales and average price, but median held steady.
The sale, which has produced 15 individual group I winners the past two seasons, saw a strong group of local and international buyers vying for horses at the top end of the market throughout the three-day auction.
"It's been tough enough to buy the good colts at the sale and there's been plenty of competition on the nice horses," said Tony Pike, who bought the final session's highest price horse-. The colt by freshman sire Swiss Ace wnet for $160,000 (US$134,829).
Consigned by Westbury Stud, agent, the chestnut is out of the winning High Yield mare Ugly Betty. Group I-winning Australian sprinter Swiss Ace, a son of Secret Savings, stands in New Zealand at Gerry Harvey's Westbury Stud in Karaka.
Overall, 399 horses sold for an aggregate of $17,256,500 ($14,541,729), a 9.7% decrease from last year's sale, when 415 horses were sold. The average price of $43,249 ($36,445) was down 6.1%, but median was unchanged at $35,000 ($29,494).
The clearance rate was 71%, compared with 74% in 2012.
A colt by young sire Thewayyouare brought the sale's top price of $200,000 ($168,536) on opening day Jan. 30. The youngster, out of City Affair, by City On a Hill, was bought by Hong Kong-based Magus Equine from the Michele Norman's Kilmore Farm, agent, consignment.
The National yearling sales series continues with the Festival sale on Feb. 3-4, beginning at 11 a.m. local time.
For sales results, visit nzb.co.nz.