When the catalogue was released for this sale, there were plenty of lots that caught the eye in terms of the names that they had on the page, writes Andrew Fletcher. There were entries including siblings of the likes of Sizing Europe, Wishfull Thinking and Denman, so there was plenty of reason to be optimistic of a quality sale. Amongst the 220 original entries there were also 47 lots born before 2010 being sold as breeding stock.
Before the sale began there was a foal show designed to provide buyers with another opinion as to which would develop into National Hunt performers. The show was split into a colt and a fillies division and both proved to be popular when they went into the sale ring. The colts class was won by lot 75, a Presenting colt out of a Flemensfirth mare who realised £25,000 when he went through the ring. The Fillies class was won by lot 138, a Shirocco filly by a King’s Theatre mare, she made £35,000 in the auction and I will look a bit more closely at her later on.
The top lot (109) in the sale was an Alflora colt out of Poussetiere Deux, who won over fences in France. He is a full brother to Wishfull Thinking, who is trained by Phillip Hobbs. He was second in the Jewson Golden Miller Chase at the Cheltenham festival this year before winning two valuable novice chases at Aintree and Punchestown. Aiden Murphy paid £50,000 for this full sibling after he finished second in the foal show and suggested that he would be resold at a later date, probably as a 3 year-old.
As I previously mentioned, lot 138 won the fillies class of the foal show and made the second highest price of the day when bought by Richard Haggas for £35,000. She is the second produce of a mare (Theatre Girl) whose full sister made £50,000 at the DBS January Sales in 2010. Haggas has had plenty of success with the family having bought them as foals and sold them on at a later date for a profit. This is also the intention for this filly and will be worth following when taking the success of her relatives into account.
The top 3 was completed by lot 34, a Kayf Tara colt out of Celtic Native. The dam finished second in the Long Distance Hurdle and 3rd in the Long Walk Hurdle. The colt finished 4th in the foal show and there is a full sibling to this colt who made €65,000 as a foal and is currently a yearling. Robert Allcock bought him for £34,000 and he will also be put away before being sold on as a 3 year-old.
Of the other foals in the sale, lot 111 was a three-part brother to dual Hennessy Gold Cup and 2008 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner, Denman. He was sold to Gatterstown Stud in County Tipperary for £22,000 and will most likely be developed by them before being sold at a later date.
The top mare in the sale was lot 191, named Sugar Island and she sold for £31,000 to Thistletown Stud inCountyWexford. She is a half sister to Sizing Europe, the winner of the Arkle in 2010 and the Queen Mother Champion Chase in 2011. He also landed the Tingle Creek at Sandown on his most recent outing earlier this month. The mare is in foal to Beneficial, the sire of Willie Mullins’ Cooldine, who won the RSA at Cheltenham in 2009.
This sale was a reworking of the January sales of previous years following a drop in entries. The National Hunt Mares and Foals were therefore separated in order to give them a better chance of selling. The average price of £6918 was very similar to previous sections of foals and mares as was the top price. As always though, if top pedigrees are in the catalogue there will always be plenty of interest in them. The top three lots and some of the others will be worth following particularly because the plan with most of them is to sell them on at a later date.
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