Fasig-Tipton officials recently announced the Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training would have one under-tack show next year instead of the usual two because there would be less stress on the horses and it would be more convenient for buyers and consignors. But it’s not yet clear if the other companies that conduct select juvenile auctions are going to follow Fasig-Tipton’s lead.
The installation of a synthetic surface at its Central Florida track could make Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. officials reluctant to make a change in the under-tack show schedule.
“We might err on the conservative side just to take away a little bit of the question mark about the new surface and keep it at two, but I don’t want to speak for the company,” OBS general manager and director of sales Tom Ventura said. “It has been discussed, and I think we will address it at our next board meeting at the end of September.”
Jerry McMahon, president and general manager of Barretts, said his company is leaning toward staying with the two breeze-show format.
“We have a history in March in California of dodging rain all the time, and our track isn’t waterproof,” he said, “so it’s hard to design a one breeze-show format in light of that.”
In addition, McMahon said, nearly every horse that breezes well in the first Barretts under-tack show only gallops in the second or doesn’t return to the track. “The consignors are making the decision (to cut back) on their own,” he said.
Keeneland director of sales Geoffrey Russell said his company had not made a decision about next year’s under-tack show schedule, and he declined to discuss whether it was leaning toward staying with two breeze shows or cutting back to one.