OBS Sale Ends With Major Declines From A Year Ago

The Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's fall mixed sale ended on Thursday with big declines from a year ago. The figures for the auction's four sessions combined were 838 horses sold for a gross of $6,210,700, and an average price of $7,411. The number sold and gross were down by 24.3% and 56.3%, respectively, and the average was down by 42.3%. In 2000, the 1,107 horses sold grossed $14,223,600 and averaged $12,849.

Last year, there were five sessions, with the first devoted to dispersals by Mockingbird Farm, Fred Hooper, and a partnership between Farnsworth Farm and Locust Valley Corp. During that session, 277 horses were sold for a gross of $4,335,600 and an average of $15,652. With the dispersals removed from 2000's final figures, the 2001 results fared better in comparison. This year's number sold was up by one percent, but the gross and average were down by 37.2% and 37.8%, respectively.

The declines were blamed by buyers, consignors, and sale company officials on a catalogue with less quality, the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, and the slumping American economy.

On this year's final day, the 220 horses sold grossed $774,800 and averaged $3,522. The highest-priced horse during the last session was Valid Storm, a 7-year-old Valid Appeal mare who brought $19,000. Sold in foal to Slew Gin Fizz, she was purchased by Our Sugar Bear Stable from Kelli Mitchell, agent. Valid Storm was produced from the Storm Bird mare Storm o'Fire, a half-sister to grade III winner Alabama Nana and to stakes winner Toooverprime, who is the dam of champion Serena's Song.