OBS Fall Average Slips 17.1%

Rustlewood Farm pays top price of $95,000 for 3-year-old Great Venue.

By Bill Giauque

The consignor preferred session of the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.’s fall mixed sale Tuesday, Oct. 18, was unable to keep pace statistically with last year’s figures. The average was down 17.1% to $12,976 while the gross was $1,038,100, down 60% from a year ago. Despite the decline in average, the median rose 10% to $8,250.

Last year’s figures were boosted by the Westbury Stables dispersal. Twenty of the Westbury offerings sold for $900,000.

Great Venue, purchased for $95,000 by Karen and George Russell of Rustlewood Farm, topped this year’s session.

A 3-year-old daughter of Unbridled's Song consigned by Glen Hill Farm, Great Venue was in foal to leading freshman sire Scat Daddy. Out of the Formal Dinner mare Rose Colored Lady, Great Venue, Hip No. 63, is a half sister to grade II winner Too Much Bling  and three other stakes winners.

The Russells founded their Ocala, Fla., farm in 1987 and “are taking advantage of the down market,” according to George Russell. “We are trying to make big improvements to our broodmare band.

“We bought five mares at this sale last year, and with our purchase today that brings us to six mares. Our primary focus is to upgrade. We are making a big advance now because of how the market is.”

The top selling weanling, a colt by Pomeroy, sold to Machmer Hall for $48,000. Sold as Hip No. 121 by TdM Sales, the colt is out of Clever Me, an unraced daughter of Not For Love. Carrie Brogden of Machmer Hall was delighted with her purchase. 

“I have bought Flat Out , Currency Swap, and Black Seventeen out of this sale,” she said. “This sale has been good to me.” 

Flat Out won the Oct. 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup (gr. I); Currency Swap captured this year’s Three Chimneys Hopeful Stakes (gr. I); and Black Seventeen took the 2008 Vosburgh Stakes (gr. I).

The sale resumes tomorrow, Wednesday, at 10:30 a.m. with the open session.