Bel Esprit Colt Tops Magic Millions Opener

Average price rises 65.2% at national horses in training sale.

The average price rose 65.2% from 2008 during the opening session of the Magic Millions national horses in training sale Oct. 28 in Australia. The gross revenue also grew, increasing 12.7%.

A 2-year-old Bel Esprit – Bellain colt brought the session’s highest price of Aust$360,000 ($330,196 in U.S. funds). Victorian trainer Peter Morgan purchased him from Washpool Lodge.

“He's a very nice colt," Morgan said. "If you believe what they are telling me, he's a cheap horse. He's good-legged for a Bel Esprit, and he breezed up nicely. He looks a great prospect."

According to Morgan, the colt more likely will be racing sooner than later.

"I will get him home and give him a little break, but then get him into the stables and we might set him for the Magic Millions Classic," the trainer said.

The first session’s results included a gross of Aust$4,799,000 ($4,401,691) for the 88 horses at sold. The average was $54,534 ($50,019). Last year, the 129 horses that sold grossed $4,258,000 and averaged $33,008.

The clearance rate fell from 73.7% in 2008 to 70.4% this year.

"I always thought the catalog this year was the best we've ever put together for the sale," said Magic Millions managing director David Chester. "And we've worked extremely hard in getting many prospective buyers to the Gold Coast. I'm pretty sure we've never had this number of international clients at any Magic Millions sale ever.”