Straight Man Filly Tops New York-Bred Sale Opener

A filly by Straight Man was purchased by trainer Linda Rice, as agent, for $180,000 to top Sunday's first session of the Fasig-Tipton sale of New York-bred yearlings at the Humphrey S. Finney pavilion in Saratoga Springs.

Consigned by Harry L. Landry Bloodstock, as agent, the filly was produced from the stakes-placed Seattle Dancer mare Seattle Moon and is a half-sister to stakes winner Vous.

Rice said her client was likely purchasing the filly on behalf of a racing partnership and that she had placed a pre-sale value of $150,000-$175,000 on the filly.

Fasig-Tipton reported 53 horses were sold for gross receipts of $2,462,000, compared with the $2,577,500 aggregate for the 60 head sold during last year's first session. The session average price of $46,453 represented an 8.1% gain over the $42,958 figure for the corresponding session in 2003 and the median price of $38,000 was up over the $35,000 session median last year.

The 40 horses that did not meet their consignors' reserves represented 43% of the total through the ring, a rate that sales company officials said is not out of line with such a sale.

"It is a man or woman's right to set a reserve, no matter what it is and it is not always indicative of the where the market is," Boyd Browning, Fasig-Tipton COO said of the RNAs.

Terence R. P. Collier, Fasig-Tipton's marketing director and auction announcer, said the incentive program that enhances purses for New York-breds and New York foals, seen as a lure to potential buyers, is also attractive to the sale's consignors.

"A lot of these people know that they have the opportunity to race in the New York-bred program," Collier said. "They are local breeders and they want them to stay in New York."

Overall, FT officials were pleased with the session results. "Any time we are up 8% in average and 9% in median, it is a solid horse sale," Browning said. "Based on the comments we are getting from consignors, indications are that tomorrow night might look a little stronger across the board."

The second and final day of the sale is Monday.

Results, Fasig-Tipton