Riskaverse brings $5 million to top auction.

Riskaverse brings $5 million to top auction.

Anne M. Eberhardt

Riskaverse Sells for $5 Million to Top Fasig-Tipton November Auction

Riskaverse finished next-to-last in the Emirates Airline Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) on Oct. 29. But she was No. 1 Sunday at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky November select sale in Lexington, bringing $5 million to top the auction's booming market. Reiley McDonald of Lexington-based Eaton Sales was the buyer.

"I bought her for the same partnership that I have been buying for the last two years, and they (the partnership's members) just choose to remain anonymous," McDonald said. "She will probably be going to Storm Cat or to Giant's Causeway , but the reason we bought her is that we can breed her to just about anything. She's a big, beautiful, lovely mare with great presence. She ran in a lot of races, and she was very sound. She's the type of the mare that we can go commercially with or even race her."

An earner of more than $2 million, Riskaverse won the 2002 Queen Elizabeth Challenge Cup Stakes (gr. IT) along with the 2004 and 2005 editions of the Flower Bowl Invitational Stakes (gr. IT). John Stuart of Bluegrass Thoroughbred Services consigned the 6-year-old daughter of Dynaformer for her breeder and owner, Peter Schiff's Fox Ridge Farm.

Riskaverse is a half-sister to grade III winner Cozzy Corner (by Cozzene). Their dam, The Bink, is a 14-year-old daughter of Seeking the Gold that won three times and finished second in the Interborough Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III). Other family members include Sauce Boat, Raja Baba, Plugged Nickle, and Christiecat.

"I hate to say it, but I wasn't surprised (by the price) based on the straight supply and demand for that type of mare," McDonald said. "There's just not many top quality mares available."

In all, 109 horses were sold for a gross of $30,938,000, an average of $283,835 and a median of $85,000. Compared to last year, the gross grew 49.6% from the total of $20,685,800 for the 109 horses sold. The average soared 175.8% from $102,914 and the median shot up 214.8% from $27,000. The buyback rate increased from 15.9% to 31.9%.

Not included in the above numbers were a stallion share in Distorted Humor  that sold for $1 million and two lifetime breeding rights in Medaglia d'Oro  that brought $130,000 and $115,000. In addition, seasons to Elusive Quality and Fusaichi Pegasus  sold for $100,000 and $125,000, respectively, and the proceeds will be used to aid victims of Hurricane Katrina. Sheikh Mohammed's Darley organization donated the Elusive Quality season and Ashford Stud donated the Fusaichi Pegasus season.

"It was a terrific sale," said Fasig-Tipton president Walt Robertson.

Contrive, the dam of Alberto VO5 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I) winner Folklore, and Wild Fit, the runner-up in the Juvenile Fillies, each sold for $3 million.

Sheikh Mohammed's bloodstock manager John Ferguson bought Contrive from Taylor Made Sales Agency, agent. The 7-year-old daughter of Storm Cat out of the grade III winner Jeano is in foal to 2003 Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) winner Pleasantly Perfect, who entered stud earlier this year. The immediate underbidder to Ferguson was Californian B. Wayne Hughes.

Irish agent Demi O'Byrne, a key member of the Coolmore Stud buying team, purchased Wild Fit. Eaton Sales consigned the Wild Wonder – Grannies Feather filly for Brewer Racing Stable and Florida pinhooker Murray Smith. Wild Fit is a full sister to grade II winner Fusaichi Rock Star.

"She's a beautiful mare who has got off to a great start," said Ferguson of Contrive, whose dark coat was sleek and shiny. "Interestingly, she goes back to La Troienne. She's a Storm Cat mare who'se first foal is a Breeders' Cup winner. It doesn't take Einstein to work out that she's a top prospect. She's a very desirable mare.

"It's a lot of money to give for a mare," he continued, "but when they've achieved what she has, it's not a huge surprise. I would think that she would stay here (in this country). She's from the family of Smarty Jones , which makes Elusive Quality (Smarty Jones' sire) a possibility (as a future mate), but on the other hand, she's worked so well with Tiznow  (the sire of Folklore) that it would obviously be another very simple solution from a breeding point of view."

Coolmore Stud managing partner John Magnier, who stood with O'Byrne in the back walking ring of Fasig-Tipton's sale pavilion during the bidding for Wild Fit, said the gray filly would remain in this country and that he would own her in partnership with Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith. Patrick Biancone will train her, according to O'Byrne. Wild Fit won the Del Mar Debutante Stakes (gr. I) earlier this year.

"I saw her the other day in New York (in the Breeders' Cup), and I like the way she runs," Magnier said. "She hasn't got a lot of pedigree, but her brother was quite good. She's also athletic-looking."

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