By Nancy Sexton
Courtesy of Racing Post
The curtain came down on a record year of trading for Tattersalls in Newmarket Dec. 1 with the fourth and final installment of the December mares sale.
Although the sale ended softly with a subdued final session, it concluded a week that featured investment from a wide range of international buyers, particularly those from America—who were estimated to have accounted for 3,000,000 guineas (US$3,930,630) worth of stock—along with those from Australia and Japan, to complement a deep buying base of domestic and European buyers.
Led by the 2,000,000gns ($2,620,420) sale of Harzand's dam Hazariya to M.V. Magnier Nov. 29, 681 horses were sold during the four-day sale for a total of 44,709,200gns ($58,578,500). The average and median fell by a marginal 4% to 65,652gns ($86,020) and 27,000gns ($35,375).
"It has been a privilege to have welcomed buyers this week from every continent in the world and they have all contributed to a uniquely diverse sale, which has brought our anniversary year to a successful conclusion," said Edmond Mahony, chairman of Tattersalls.
"The unprecedented annual turnover demonstrates the sustained appetite for quality European bloodstock in all sectors of the market and this has been clearly reemphasised throughout the December sale. Record demand at the October yearling sale and the autumn horses in training sale has been followed by truly global participation this week. While the catalogue may not have been regarded as a vintage one, it has still inspired vibrant international competition."
The December sale as a whole generated 79,655,050gns ($104,365,000) in turnover for an average of 50,865gns ($66,645).
"Eight of the top 10 highest priced foals in Britain and Ireland, 76 foals selling for 100,000 guineas or more and a further 110 breaking the six figure mark this week, are all clear indicators of a market in which quality has been well rewarded," Mahony added. "The 10 highest-priced mares and fillies this week were sold to buyers from Britain, France, Ireland, Japan, South Africa, and the (U.S.), while buyers from Australia, China, and the (Persian) Gulf region also made significant contributions at every level of the market.
"As ever, we must thank our vendors, British, Irish, and from further afield, who make the Tattersalls December sale the premier sale of its type in Europe. Every year we visit as many overseas markets as possible, but the consistent support from our vendors is equally crucial in annually attracting the major global players to the December sale."
Peter and Antoinette Kavanagh of Kildaragh Stud picked up the dearest lot of Thursday's final session, paying 38,000gns ($49,790) for the regally-bred Arabescatta through Federico Barberini.
A multiple winner, the daughter of Monsun is a half sister to group II winner Midas Touch, out of listed winner Approach, a Darshaan half sister to Aussie Rules. Perhaps more importantly, she is also a half sister to one of the more exciting 3-year-olds for next year in John Gosden's unbeaten Coronet.
"She's a nice type by Monsun," Barberini said. "Unfortunately she's not in foal but it's a huge page. She comes from a tremendous family."
After producing four consecutive foals, including the winning Amico Americano, Arabescatta was sold barren to Helmet by The Castlebridge Consignment.
For more European racing, sales, and bloodstock news, visit RacingPost.com.