"Our clearance rate was a little below our usual outstanding level early on," said David Chester, the managing director of Magic Millions. "But by the end of the session, it picked up and made a strong figure. The quality yearlings from the catalogue were well sought out by astute buyers. I'm sure those who purchased early in the day picked up some good value buys."I would be expecting similar figures over the next three days," he added. "But I'm sure we have some yearlings to come which will pass today's topper."
A Danehill colt brought the top price of $650,000 ($498,940 in U.S. funds) as the Conrad Jupiters Magic Millions yearling sale got off to strong start in Australia Thursday. Trainer Gai Waterhouse was the buyer, and Stratheden Stud was the consignor. Produced from the winning Assert mare Sommes Sound, the colt is a half-brother to Australian champion Assertive Lad and Australian group I winner Assertive Lass, both by Zeditave."In my opinion, he was the top horse of the sale," Waterhouse said. "He comes from a top family -- it's a family I've had a great deal of success with. I'm delighted to buy him. He's a really lovely horses."Gross revenues for the opening session soared to more than $18.5 million ($14,201,525), up 24.8% from a year ago. The average price of $112,230 ($86,153) was up 16.5%. Eighty-four percent of the horses offered were sold.