The opening session of the 2008 Fasig-Tipton Eastern Fall yearling sale, Sept. 29 at the Maryland State Fairgrounds in Timonium, Md., took hits in key statistical areas, with gross and average falling, but the median remained steady.
At the close of the first of three sessions, Fasig-Tipton reported 171 horses sold for a gross $2,783,400. The average was $16,277and the median $10,000. The number of horses not sold totaled 93, or 35.2%, of the number offered.
Compared to one year ago, the number of horses sold decreased 2.3% and the gross fell 34.8%. The average slipped 33.3% and median remained even.
Last year’s opening session saw 175 horses sold for a gross of $4,269,800. The average was $24,399 and the median $10,000. The number of horses not sold was 85 or 32.7% of the number that went through the ring.
“It’s a tough world we live in right now,” said Walt Robertson, chairman of Fasig-Tipton. “This segment of the market is not fun. It is affected by what is going on around us and we’ve seen it not just here, but it is a world-wide deal.”
Robertson was referring to the upheaval on Wall Street that followed the U.S. House of Representatives rejecting a $700 billion bailout plan for the nation’s financial markets.
Robertson was optimistic that the numbers would rebound on the second day. “All of our buyers have checked in, the same ones we had last year and they are all buying,” he said. “We will just see how we do the next few days.”
The opening session’s top-priced yearling was purchased by David Scanlon, of Ocala-based Scanlon Training Center, who went to $155,000 for a son of Silver Deputy out of the stakes winning Geiger Counter mare Run For Joy. The chestnut colt was consigned by his breeder, Herb Moelis’ Candyland.
The colt, who is from the family of champion and sire Cozzene, is a registered Maryland-bred and is Delaware certified.
“The colt was by Silver Deputy, he was a powerful horse and I just thought he looked like a runner,” Scanlon said. “He had a great body, great hip, and was out of a Geiger Counter mare. He seemed to fit the program that we were looking for.”
Scanlon said the colt will be sold as a 2-year-old next year.
“Silver Deputy has been a good, solid horse for the 2-year-old sales,” Scanlon said. “Typically, they are precocious early and have speed. He is one of the horses that we always like for the 2-year-old sales.”
The 23-year-old Silver Deputy was pensioned in early September due to declining fertility. He stood at Fred Seitz’ Brookdale Farm near Versailles, Ky.
Speaking of the opening session’s market, Scanlon said the day’s results were a reflection of the current economy, and the horses offered fell victim to the current state of the Thoroughbred market.
“We saw the decline as we went through Keeneland (September sale), where at the end when more of the average or lower end horses came through, it started to decline,” Scanlon said. “We have had a couple of rough days in the stock market since then (Keeneland September sale), and this sale has fallen victim to that. But, I think the individuals are still here and when you find them you have to jump up and get them."
Two other offerings, a son of Medaglia d'Oro out of the Rhythm mare Saddy Twister, and a son of Not For Loveout of the Silver Buck mare Silver Nova, broke the six-figure mark. Both were sold for $100,000.
Mike Mulligan, signing the sales ticket IBS, agent, purchased the Medaglia d’Oro colt from the consignment of Bluewater Sales, agent, and Vision Sales 2008 purchased the son of Not For Love from the consignment of Green Willow Farms, agent.
The sale continues its second session Sept. 30 at 10 a.m.