Maria's Mon Colt Tops at Keeneland; Average Drops

A Maria's Mon colt out of Blues On Parade (by Cure the Blues) was purchased by Robert and Beverly Lewis for $325,000 as the top price during Sunday's session of the Keeneland September yearling sale. The colt was consigned by Forbush Farm, agent for Dr. David and Jean Darby.

Keeneland sold 292 horses during Sunday's session for $10,685,400, an average of $36,594. During the corresponding session a year ago, 272 horses brought $10,592,300, an average of $38,942. The median price for the session was $27,000, compared with $26,500 for same session in 1999.

After seven days of the 13-day auction, gross sales total a record $263,663,300, an average of $143,764. Through the same number of sessions last year, 1,903 horses had been sold for $213,229,500, an average of $112,049. This year's cumulative median of $60,000 is slightly ahead of last year's $55,000 figure.

The previous record was $233,020,800 for 3,011 horses during last year's 11-day sale.

On Saturday, a Saint Ballado colt produced from the stakes-placed Strawberry Road mare Stephanie's Road was purchased by Eugene Melnyk for $1.1 million. The colt was the fourth horse of the auction purchased by Melnyk for $1 million or more. Taylor Made Sales Agency consigned the dark bay or brown colt.

Melnyk also paid the second high price of the day--$600,000--for a colt by Unbridled's Song out of the $126,475 stakes winner Sensational Eyes, also consigned by Taylor.

Keeneland reported 304 horses were sold Saturday for a gross of $14,835,400. The session average of $48,801 represented a dip from the $49,359 average one year ago when 289 yearlings sold for a total of $14,264,700 on the sixth day of the sale. Saturday's median price also fell to $30,000, compared with $35,000 in 1999.

The sale resumes at 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Monday and continues through next Saturday.