Second World Record in One Day at Fasig-Tipton Calder Sale

Second World Record in One Day at Fasig-Tipton Calder Sale
Photo: Leslie Martin
Fusaichi Pegasus colt, sold for world-record price Tuesday.
For the second time Tuesday, a world-record price for a juvenile sold at public auction was set during the Fasig-Tipton selected 2-year-olds in training sale at Calder Race Course.

The new world record price of $4.5 million was paid by Japanese owner Fusao Sekiguchi for a colt from the first crop sired by Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Fusaichi Pegasus, who was raced by Sekiguchi. The colt, consigned by Kirkwood Stables, was produced from the unraced Storm Cat filly Hidden Storm, a half-sister to grade III winner Jazz Club.

The sale was déjà vu for Sekiguchi and underbidder Satish Sanan's Padua Stable. Padua and Coolmore Stud were the underbidders when Sekiguchi paid $4 million for Fusaichi Pegasus at the 1998 Keeneland July yearling sale.

The bidding war for the colt sparked excitement in the sales pavilion, and once it was over, Sekiguchi stood, waved to the crowd, and gave a thumbs-up sign.

Speaking through an interpreter, Sekiguchi said it was "limitless" how high would have gone to acquire the colt. He said the colt reminded him of Fusaichi Pegasus and that he hoped his purchase would encourage others to buy offspring of the Derby winner.

Ironically, the new record-priced colt was previously owned by Robert La Penta, who paid $1,050,000 for a Storm Cat colt.

Sekiguchi's record exceeded the previous world record set earlier in the day when a Stephen Got Even solt was hammered down for $3.1 million.

The buyer was John Ferguson, regular agent for Sheikh Mohammed. The immediate underbidder was trainer Bob Baffert, who was seated during the bidding with Sanan.

"Sheikh Mohammed and I went through the videos of a few horses and this was a horse that although he only two-minute licked, he moved fantastically well," Ferguson said. "Naturally I told him how well the horse had worked on Sunday, and he obviously thought he was a horse that could be a valuable addition to the team."

The colt worked an eighth of a mile in 10 2/5 Sunday.

"He's a great looking horse, and a great advertisement for his sire," Ferguson added. "He's a horse wth a lot of ability, and if he was to make it, his looks could take him all the way to the top of the list of stallion prospects."

The colt was bought as a yearling by Mike Ryan, agent, for $157,000 at last year's Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July sale. He was bred in Kentucky by Ron McDonald and sold at the FTK sale by Hidden Springs Farm, Eaton Sales as agent.

The colt was sold as agent at the Calder sale by Niall Brennan.

"He exuded class as a yearling and he has never disappointed us," Brennan said. "I was confident he would bring at least $1.5 million but after that it was just a matter of how much they wanted him."

The world-record priced colt is out of minor stakes winner Blacktie Bid by Black Tie Affair. She has three other foals of racing age, none of which has distinguished itself on the racetrack. His second dam is multiple graded stakes winner Degenerate Gal.

The previous record was set just last year when a colt by Sea of Secrets sold for $2.7 million at the Barretts March sale. Now named Diamond Fury and owned by Charles Fipke and trained by Baffert, he has yet to finish first or second in four lifetime starts.

Earlier in the session, LaPenta, a Connecticut communications company executive who campaigns Kentucky Derby (gr. I) contender The Cliff's Edge, went to $1,050,000 to acquire a son of Storm Cat.

Nick Zito, who trains The Cliff's Edge and other horses for LaPenta, signed the ticket. "He told me he wanted a Storm Cat and that he wanted to bid $1,050,000, but he probably would have gone higher," Zito said. "He is a May foal and a horse that is improving. I'm very patient."

Consigned by Hoby and Layna Kight, the colt was produced from the stakes-placed Spectacular Bid mare Add, the dam of stakes winner Inflate and second dam of graded winner Desert Hero.

LaPenta is president and chief financial officer of L-3Communications, which is a service and product provider for the U. S. government and commercial telecommunications companies.

Results, Fasig-Tipton

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