(Edited Magic Millions press release)
The Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling auction got a new sale topper during its second session when an Encosta de Lago filly brought Aust$700,000 ($640,241 in U.S. funds) Jan. 7 in Australia. The previous high was the Aust$500,000 ($456,500) price for a Charge Forward – Chatelaine colt during the auction’s first session Jan. 6.
Mount Hallowell Stud, a Western Australian breeding operation, purchased the expensive filly from Glastonbury Farms. The bay yearling is the fourth live foal out of the 12-year-old Danehill mare Ha Ha, an Australian champion and the winner of the Golden Slipper (Aust-I) and Flight (Aust-I) Stakes in 2001.
Trainer Gai Waterhouse, who conditioned Ha Ha, handled the bidding for Glastonbury, outlasting a team from Ingham Racing.
"She reminds me very much of Ha Ha," said Waterhouse of the filly. "She has got a huge hindquarter, a beautiful hindquarter, but has development to go. He (Mount Hallowell Stud's Craig Thompson) is excited to buy her, and I am very excited to be training her."
Thompson, owner and managing director of a ship agency and broking company, Seacorp, described the yearling as his "filly of the sale.” He added: “I came here specifically to buy this filly. Just have a look at her pedigree. Hopefully she can win a few races as well -- with her residual value outstanding."
Thompson confirmed the filly would be heading to Waterhouse’s stable, but said others he had purchased at the auction would be sent to Western Australia.
"I bought three others here yesterday that will go to David Harrison,” Thompson said. “He is my top-line trainer in Western Australia."
The combined figures for the auction’s first two days, during which 291 yearlings were sold, included a gross of Aust$38,173,000 ($34,914,200) and an average price of Aust$131,179 ($119,980). The median price was Aust$100,000 ($91,463). The clearance rate improved to 78.2%, up from 72.9% during the first session.
"I expected increases, and we got them today," said Magic Millions managing director David Chester. "It was a healthy session with spirited bidding on many lots. We still have plenty more quality lots for sale, particularly over the next two sessions. The spread of buyers is excellent. We are delighted to have such a top buying bench on hand."