American Pharoah Leads The Way
A US$2.2-million colt from the first crop of American Pharoah topped the opening day at Keeneland's September Yearling Sale on Monday afternoon.
Godolphin landed the topper, offered by Peter O’Callaghan’s Woods Edge Farm, after fending off a stern challenge from Coolmore. Godolphin’s Sheikh Mohammed was in attendance at the auction for the first time in a number of years, and his operation was leading buyer with nine acquisitions for a total of US$7.28 million.
“Every year, we have hopes that Sheikh Mohammed will attend,” said Keeneland's Bob Elliston said. “It really is an honour when Sheikh Mohammed is able to clear his schedule to come here. I think it’s been about 10 years since he was last here."
Lot 91 had been acquired by Peter O’Callaghan for US$400,000 as a Keeneland November weanling.
“He was a really special horse. I think he’s probably the best yearling we’ve ever had going on 17 years now," added O'Callaghan. I’m very grateful to Sheikh Mohammed for buying him. I knew when he saw him today, his eyes just lit up. I just had a feeling he was going to try hard to buy him.”
Coolmore Go Chrome
A half-brother by Tapit [USA] to California Chrome [USA] sold to the Coolmore contingent for US$1.1 million.
“He is a very nice horse and when Michael Tabor saw him, he was really taken by him,” said Coolmore’s M.V. Magnier. “The mare is a good producer and he is a brother to a very good horse. He is going to stay here and go to Todd Pletcher. Let’s hope he is good.”
“We are very pleased with the sale and delighted with who bought the horse,” said SF Bloodstock's Tom Ryan, who bred the yearling,
“It is always great to have one under their management. He was a superstar colt from day one, as you see reflected in the price. She has been a wonderful mare. We have an amazing Pioneer of the Nile out of her and she is back in foal to a Coolmore stallion in Uncle Mo. We are very excited.”
A total of 138 yearlings changed hands for gross receipts of US$48,620,000. The average was US$352,319 and median was US$260,000. The RNA rate was 34.91%.