In the Magic Millions auction ring on the Gold Coast in Australia recently, New Zealand-based bloodstock agent Rob McAnulty out-bid Starcraft's owner Paul Makin and paid Aust$825,000 (U.S.$658,000) for a Dehere colt (setting a new Australasian record for a 2-year-old in-training) during the horses-in-training sale. The colt is the first foal from stakes-winning Danehill mare Shovoff.McAnulty (who thought he'd have to pay around $750,000 for the colt) declared: "A horse like him rarely shows up at a sale like this. If they were, I'd do it (pay this much) every day. He showed he can run (during the pre-sale breeze-up session), and I knew I could bid on him with a lot more confidence than I could as a yearling. A number of young horses like him, with his pedigree, would sell for a million dollars as a yearling. So at the price and after seeing him sprint-up, he's a good buy."Said Makin: "You're too good for me! He was a nice colt, I was hoping to get him for Aust$600,000." The colt's dam Shovoff (herself a million dollar yearling purchase) is a sister to New South Wales Hunter Valley stallion Shovhog (being from group II-winning Luskin Star mare Startling Lass).South African-based World Wide Bloodstock paid Aust$140,000 for a colt by boom Coolmore Freshman shuttler Johannesburg (out of the mare Ligure). John Hutchinson from New South Wales-based Scone Bloodstock Services paid Aust$170,000 for a colt by former Magic Millions 2-Year-Old Classic winner and current Widden Stud sire General Nediym. The colt (from the mare Amorous) was consigned by Oakwood Farm.Overall, during the 2-day Magic Millions sale, 147 lots sold for Aust$6,341,250 (U.S.$4,769,000) which was down 4.2% on last year's 220 sold for Aust$6,621,300 . However theAust $43,138 average was up 43.3% (last year Aust$30,097), and the clearance rate was 69% (last year 67%). In addition, a new General Session saw 60 lots sold for a further Aust$1,015,500 at an average of Aust$16,925. The clearance rate was 72.3%.
Magic Millions, which conducts the largest movement of yearlings in Australia with its eight-day sale each January, said the sale won't take place as previously advertised because of the equine influenza outbreak.