Deirdre B Biles

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Frankly Speaking: Stronach on Magna

Frankly Speaking: Stronach on Magna

Frank Stronach is chairman of Magna Entertainment Corp., a major racetrack operator that filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection March 5. He also is the owner of Adena Springs, which won its fifth consecutive Eclipse Award as outstanding breeder in 2008 while Stronach picked up his fourth Eclipse as outstanding owner. Stronach discussed the MEC bankruptcy with The Blood-Horse following the Adena Springs sale of 2-year-olds in training.

Pinhookers Will Be More Cautious

Pinhookers Will Be More Cautious

With prices tumbling at the early select sales of 2-year-olds in training, pinhookers, who provide most of the stock for the auctions, already are thinking about how they are going to approach their next buying-and-selling cycle. It's not good news for yearling consignors because, in general, pinhookers plan to be much less aggressive when buying young horses later this year.

Buybacks Down at F-T Sale; Average Drops

Buybacks Down at F-T Sale; Average Drops

Tackling the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, Fasig-Tipton's Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training suffered some bumps and bruises, but also scored a couple of minor victories. The number of horses sold rose from a year ago while the buy-back rate declined. Meanwhile, the gross revenue fell 25.5% and the average price dropped 31.5%. The median price was down 34.8%.

Fasig-Tipton to Report Private Sales

Fasig-Tipton will report private sales in addition to horses sold in the auction ring during its Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training March 3 at Calder Race Course. The juveniles sold privately will be designated on the sale summary sheet as (PS), which stands for private sale. The private sales will be included in the auction's final statistics.

Fasig-Tipton: Puttin' on the Ritz

Fasig-Tipton: Puttin' on the Ritz

When Dubai-based Synergy Investments purchased Fasig-Tipton last year, Sheikh Mohammed's bloodstock manager, John Ferguson, vowed the Kentucky-based auction firm would strive to offer higher levels of customer service. According to shoppers at Fasig-Tipton's Florida select sale of 2-year-olds in training, the company is fulfilling that promise.

Group Winners Entered in Dubai Sale

Group winners Lord Admiral, Biarritz, Royal Vintage, and Vertigineux are scheduled to be offered during the Dubai International Racing Carnival (DIRC) session of the Emirates Racing Authority horses in training sale, sponsored by Al Basti Equiworld, at Nad Al Sheba in Dubai.

OBS Reports Five Riding Crop Violations

The set of uniform policies developed by four major auction firms Barretts, Fasig-Tipton, Keeneland, and the Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. took effect beginning with the OBS February select sale of 2-year-olds in training Feb. 17 in Central Florida. The policies address medication, prohibited practices, riding crops, and horseshoes. "As the first sale under these new guidelines, I thought it went tremendously well," said Tom Ventura, the OBS general manager and director of sales.

Question Yourself

By Deirdre B. Biles - It's inevitable. Every year when the sales of 2-year-olds in training start revving up and the babies start working fast, The Blood-Horse receives a flurry of letters and e-mails. Angry writers, many of them breeders and owners, complain about how detrimental it is to the Thoroughbred breed to make young horses breeze at high speeds.

2004 Eclipse Turf Male: Kitten's Joy

Ken Ramsey wants to win the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) more than any other race, and he tried to make Kitten's Joy a Derby horse. He didn't achieve his goal with the son of El Prado, but the flashy chestnut colt's development into a turf star was a very good consolation prize.

Turf Recap: Tough Talk

They got down and dirty in the John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT), turning the Sport of Kings into a rip-roaring, Texas-style rodeo. With front-running Star Over the Bay starting to fade, Powerscourt charged to the front on the final turn. Then Better Talk Now attacked from the outside, cutting in front of Magistretti. Meanwhile, the 7-10 favorite, Kitten's Joy, frantically swung his head to the left and right, looking for running room as the field headed to the wire.

Keeneland Sale Opens with Plenty of Punch

On the hurricane rating scale of 1 to 5, the opening session of the Keeneland September yearling auction was a Category 3. It packed a strong financial punch on Sept. 13 in Central Kentucky, driving the market past 2003's hot numbers. But the key business figures didn't grow quite as fast as they did a year ago.

Healthwatch: Research Links Cushing's to Laminitis

Cushing's disease (CD) has been identified as the most common cause of laminitis among horses seen at the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center. Dr. Mark Donaldson, an assistant professor at the university's School of Veterinary Medicine, led the research effort.

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