Anne M. Eberhardt

Keeneland Jan. Sale Suffers More Big Setbacks

Third session gross plummets 42.4% while median price plunges 45%.

The reprieve from the discouraging statistical news during the Keeneland January horses of all ages sale didn’t last long. After upswings in gross revenue and average price in the Central Kentucky auction’s second session, the third session’s results for those key business figures slumped dramatically Jan. 13 and brought back memories of the first session’s sharp declines.

The gross plummeted 42.4% from 2009 while the median price plunged 45%. The average suffered the least damage, falling 37.2%. Meanwhile, the buy-back rate was almost the same – 22.4% this year compared to 22.6% last year.

“The good foals always sell well, but mares are the shaky thing.” said Chris Baccari of Baccari Bloodstock. “The mares are big value, giant value. Mares that haven’t quite made it yet but have the ability to make it are ten cents on the dollar.”

The 211 horses that sold grossed $2,560,100 and averaged $12,133. The median,which has declined all three days of the auction, was $5,500.

Rachel’s Star, a 9-year-old unraced daughter of Seeking the Gold, was the third session’s top-priced horse, bringing $220,000. Thoroughbred Advisory Group, agent, purchased her from Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent.

Sold in foal to Elusive Quality, Rachel’s Star is the dam of Citizen (by City Zip), who captured the 2009 Mountain Valley Stakes at Oaklawn Park and the 2008 Meadowlake Stakes at Hawthorne. Rachel’s Star is out of the winning Alydeedmare Brave Deed, who finished second in the Test Stakes (gr. I) at Saratoga and third in the Acorn Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park and Monmouth Breeders’ Cup Oaks (gr. II) in 1998.

The results for the January auction’s first three sessions combined include a gross of $20,553,900 for the 616 horses and one stallion share that sold. The average was $33,313, and the median was $14,000. Compared to 2009, when 642 horses were sold, the gross was down 19.5%. The average fell 16.2%, and the median dropped 30%.

The buy-back rate rose from 24% last year to 25.1% this year.

For complete results from this sale, including Hip-by-Hips and cumulative sale results, click here.

The sale continues through Jan. 15, with selling beginning at 10 a.m. (EST) each day.