OBS February Sale Has 200 Juveniles

The Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. has more horses for its February select sale of 2-year-olds in training than it did in 2008, according to Tom Ventura, the auction firm’s general manager and director of sales. OBS will catalog 200 juveniles, up 16.3% from last year’s total of 172.

“We’re very pleased with the horses that we got for the sale,” Ventura said. “Overall, the quality of the 2-year-olds that we have looked at has been excellent.”

The sale will be held Feb. 17 in Central Florida.

“Consignors who hadn’t been participating in the February sale have consignments this year,” Ventura said. “Jerry Bailey, David Scanlon and Bryan Rice all have horses in the sale. I think we’re partly benefitting from last year, when both our February sale and March sale were up significantly. We’re also in the backyard of most of the sellers, and they feel comfortable with bringing upper end horses to the sale. The racetrack (with its synthetic surface) has been very well-received by buyers and sellers, so I think it’s all culminated in a little more participation by some consignors who had a wait-and-see attitude.”

Last year’s February auction generated sale records for its average price of $157,640 and its median price of $125,000. The gross revenue of $14,030,000 represented an increase of 9.3% from 2007’s total of $12,831,000 even though the number of horses sold (89) was the lowest since OBS started conducting the sale after taking the reins from the Florida Breeders’ Sales Co. in the 1980s.