Boomer, First Light step up as Tattersalls Book 2 closes on record note

13 min read
Australian-based buyers Boomer Bloodstock, First Light Racing, OTI Racing, Archie Alexander, Ciaron Maher Racing and John Foote were on the buyers' list as a record Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale came to a close at Newmarket.

At A Glance

Craig Rounsefell of Boomer Bloodstock made his presence felt for trainer Dan Blacker, spending 100,000 gns (AU$194,000) apiece on a colt by Lope De Vega (Ire) and a filly by Zoustar.

First Light Racing came together with Busuttin Racing and Hawson and Houldsworth to 85,000 gns (AU$165,000) for a daughter of Siyouni (Fr).

Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr will train a filly by Frankel (GB) purchased by Blandford Bloodstock on behalf of OTI Racing for 220,000 gns (AU$427,000).

A Lope De Vega colt is headed to Ciaron Maher and David Eustace's stables, while a filly by Australia (GB) will join Archie Alexander.

A colt by current Little Avondale Stud resident Time Test (GB) topped the session, selling to agent Alistair Donald for 400,000 gns (AU$777,000).

Book 2 surpassed the record 2019 edition, with turnover of 54,512,000 gns (AU$106 million), up 13 per cent.

The Book 2 average ended on 83,865 gns (AU$163,000), up 10 per cent on last year, while the median of 62,000 gns (AU$120,000) was up 24 per cent on 2020.

The clearance rate ended at 88 per cent, up from 85 per cent last year.

Boomer doubles up

Working with a couple of different partners, Australian-agent Craig Rounsefell made his presence felt at the Sale, with his Boomer Bloodstock combining with David Redvers to buy a Zoustar filly for 100,000 gns (AU$194,000) and with DB Racing for a colt by Lope De Vega (Ire) for the same price

Both horses are headed to the California stables of Dan Blacker, who Rounsefell has forged a strong friendship with since the pair met on the Darley Flying Start course in 2005, an association highlighted by Grade 1 winner Hit The Road (USA) (More Than Ready {USA}). They will be aiming for a similar result with their two Tattersalls purchases.

Lot 1233 - Zoustar x Button Moon (Ire) (filly) | Image courtesy of Tattersalls

The Zoustar filly, Lot 1233, was offered by New England Stud and is out of stakes-placed Compton Place (GB) mare Button Moon (Ire). That pedigree page is highlighted by the presence of Champion sprinter Battaash (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}).

Co-signor Redvers is the principal of Tweenhills Stud, which is the Northern Hemisphere base of Zoustar, who had 10 yearlings sell on Wednesday for an average of 65,300 gns (AU$127,000) with a top price of 135,000 gns (AU$262,000) for Lot 1114, a colt from Baroda Stud that was purchased by Longways Stables.

Lot 1216 - Lope De Vega (Ire) x Blue Paraiba (Ire) (colt) | Image courtesy of Tattersalls

Also headed to Blacker's Santa Anita barn is Lot 1216, the Lope De Vega colt out of Blue Paraiba (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) offered by The Castlebridge Consignment. His grandam is the G1 Prix Saint-Alary winner Germance (USA) (Silver Hawk {USA}), who has produced a stakes performer, Garance (Fr) (Teofilo {Ire}).

Siyouni filly appeals for First Light

First Light Racing and Busuttin Racing experienced stakes success with Siyouni (Fr) filly See You In Spring earlier this year and so it was little surprise that Lot 1123, a filly by the Haras De Bonneval resident, was high on their list, eventually secured for 85,000 gns (AU$165,000).

Consigned by Barton Stud, she is out of a Redoute's Choice mare Wynola (Fr), who has two stakes performed half-siblings by Siyouni, Ellerslie Lace (Fr) and Baha Mar (Fr).

First Light Racing's Bloodstock Manager Ashleigh Dowley told TDN AusNZ that they had taken a very focussed approach to the catalogue.

Lot 1123 - Siyouni (Fr) x Wynola (Fr) (filly) | Image courtesy of Tattersalls

"We weren't desperate to buy out of the Sale but we were looking for opportunities. Obviously, all the Siyounis appealed to us and she was the one that made the shortlist. We thought she would be very buyable in the market and thankfully we were able to pick her up at good value," she said.

"We really liked the pedigree and that Siyouni over Danehill-line and Sadler's Wells-line as well is very highly rated. We really liked that she was a three-quarter sister to two stakes performers in France."

"We really liked the pedigree and that Siyouni over Danehill-line and Sadler's Wells-line as well is very highly rated. We really liked that she (Lot 1123) was a three-quarter sister to two stakes performers in France." - Ashleigh Dowley

Also featuring in the pedigree is G1 Prix Jean Prat winner Turtle Bowl (Ire) (Dyhim Diamond {Ire}) and Group 1-placed pair Turtle Bow (Fr) (Turtle Island {Ire}) and Age Of Aquarius (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}).

"We love the Siyounis as well. Obviously, we bought See You In Spring nearly 12 months ago at the Inglis Ready2Race Sale and she came out and won a stakes race for us as a 2-year-old," Dowley said.

"The blood for us really appeals and obviously Trent and Natalie trained See You In Spring, they loved this filly as well and we teamed up with Matt Houldsworth, who helped us last year, when we bought out first yearling out of this Sale.

"He really liked her and obviously having someone there on the ground was really valuable. He described her as a fast-looking filly and she should get up and run."

OTI secures Frankel filly

OTI Racing combined with Stuart Boman of Blandford Bloodstock to pay 220,000 gns (AU$427,000) for Lot 1148, a filly by Frankel (GB) which is headed to the stables of Mick Price and Michael Kent Jnr.

The filly, offered by Hazelwood Bloodstock, is out of South African Grade 2 winner and Grade 1 producer Alderry (SAF) (Al Mufti {USA}), and is half-sister to G1 South African Derby winner Al Sahem (Silvano {Ger})

Gallery: Lot 1148 - Frankel (GB) x Alderry (SAF) (filly) | Images courtesy of Tattersalls

"I thought she is an outstanding filly, Frankel is an exceptional stallion, almost turning into a better stallion than he was a racehorse, dare I say," Boman said.

"The mare has produced a Grade 1 winner in South Africa and I respect the South African mares, I have done a lot of research on them. I think they are undervalued, so I think this filly was under valued. She is a Book 1-quality filly to look at, I think with a European pedigree I think she would have been a 600,000 gns to 700,000 gns (AU$1.1 to 1.3 million) filly.

"I thought she (Lot 1148) is an outstanding filly, Frankel is an exceptional stallion, almost turning into a better stallion than he was a racehorse, dare I say." - Stuart Boman

"Group 1 form in any region, the top of any region, is world standard. The mare has produced three stakes winners already.”

Maher and Eustace and Alexander active

Ciaron Maher and David Eustace have been willing to cast their net wide to find horses and they combined with agent John Foote and Kern. Lillingston Assocation to pay 100,000 gns (AU$194,000) for a colt by Lope De Vega offered by Knockainey Stud.

The colt is out of Group 3-placed mare We'll Go Walking (Ire) (Authorized {Ire}), who has produced the feature jumps winner Metier (Ire) (Mastercraftsman {Ire}).

His grandam, Senora Galilei (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), is a sister to multiple Group 1 winner and Darley stallion Teofilo (Ire).

Lot 1221 - Australia (GB) x Bouvardia (GB) (filly) | Image courtesy of Tattersalls

Agent Johnny McKeever and Ballarat-based trainer Archie Alexander paid 45,000 gns (AU$87,000) for Lot 1221, a filly by Australia (GB) out of a stakes-placed sister to successful stallion, Showcasing (GB).

The filly, consigned by Hillwood Stud, is a half-sister to the winner Ones Are Wild (GB) (Bated Breath {GB}) out of the Oasis Dream (GB) mare Bouvardia (GB), who was placed at Listed level and is also from the family of Australian Group 1 winner Foreteller (GB) (Dansili {GB}).

All power to Ballyvolane as pinhook passes test

A colt by Little Avondale Stud resident Time Test (GB), Lot 1193, pinhooked for 56,000 gns (AU$109,000) in the same ring last December, catapulted his value to 400,000 gns (AU$777,000) to top the final session of Book 2.

“It's amazing to get a result like this, as we all work hard,” said John Foley. “This is a very tough business, and there are more hard days than good days. We have great help at home. Donnacha Higgins gives me a hand with the yearlings, and my dad, who's 77, mucks out six or seven boxes every day. We have great staff with us here, too. Everyone is doing their best. It makes a huge difference when you have people who want it to do well, so when it works out it is great.”

Lot 1193 - Time Test (GB) x Aurelia (GB) (colt) | Image courtesy of Tattersalls

Alistair Donald of Sackville Donald ultimately saw off the challenge of trainer Richard Hughes on behalf of King Power Racing to win the day.

“The slow burners are the best. Time Test is doing really well, his stats are very good. We were taking a gamble, but sons of Dubawi have done very well and this colt was very well prepared by the National Stud," Foley said.

“The slow burners are the best. Time Test is doing really well, his stats are very good." - John Foley

"He was the sire's dearest foal and there were reasons for that, but then he just kept improving. He's a 'wow' horse: such attitude and presence. Plenty of people told us that he was as nice a horse as there was in the ale. I do think he's special, the best yearling I ever had in 17, 18 years at it. He's obviously gone to a top firm and hopefully he becomes what we think he is.”

Though Foley is well established at his Co Limerick farm, this was a new pinhooking venture with a couple of friends. “We knew that this lad would be a fair throw as a foal,” he explained. “So if he didn't work out, we thought with three of us involved the pain wouldn't be too much. Now we'll go back to the foal sales and try it all over again.”

Donald, conversely, had put all his eggs in one basket. “He was my favourite horse of the week,” he explained. “Of a list of four that we put together, we decided to skip three and hold out for him. But it was a gamble worth taking. He's a beautiful horse, the stallion's on fire and the mare has produced a third in the Oaks. He's a proper Classic type.”

Residue counts at the end of the day

A frantic closing hour heightened a sense that plenty of prospectors had been thwarted by the sheer intensity of demand. But the copper-bottomed residual value of Lot 1279 would have stood out at any point over the previous two days.

The Zoffany (Ire) filly is out of Curtsy (Ire), a Galileo (Ire) half-sister to the dam of Mishriff (Ire), who bids to enhance a glittering CV at Ascot on Saturday; and their Group-winning mother is a half-sister to Invincible Spirit (Ire) and Kodiac (GB), i.e. also out of the great Rafha (GB). So while Curtsy could not advance her rating past 59 in a barren career, she does have a most aristocratic pedigree and Kilcarn Park were alert in picking her up for 95,000 gns (AU$185,000) with an Almanzor (Fr) cover at the 2018 December Sale.

Gallery: Lot 1279 - Zoffany (Ire) x Curtsy (Ire) (filly) | Images courtesy of Tattersalls

The resulting filly nearly retrieved that entire outlay in Book 2 last year, and here her sibling brought no less than 350,000 gns (AU$680,000) from Thady Gosden, lurking in the stairwell alongside his father John–two gentlemen, of course, intimately acquainted with the merit of Mishriff.

“She's a very good-moving filly, there's plenty of scope and class about her,” said Gosden Jr. “Obviously it's very much the happening pedigree at the moment, one we know a bit about: it would be nice if she can be the same as Mishriff on the track. She's for a new client, and hopefully will do well for them.”

Ribchester touch leaves breeder lost for words

Ribchester (Ire), who is currently shuttling to Haunui Farm in New Zealand, may be waiting for his first stakes winner but that won't concern anyone who remembers the way he thrived on racing; nor anyone who saw his knockout son consigned by Barton Stud as Lot 1099.

Mick Kinane finally gained the day on behalf of the Hong Kong Jockey Club at 350,000 gns (AU$680,000), a price that caused breeder Tim Bostwick of Biddestone Stud to check an impulse to express himself more colourfully when asked for his reaction.

Lot 1099 - Ribchester (Ire) x Vitello (GB) (colt) | Images courtesy of Tattersalls

“I'm shocked,” he admitted, settling for a more decorous formula. “He is a cracking colt, and I still have lots of faith in the stallion, but that was much better than we could have expected.”

“He (Lot 1099) is a cracking colt, and I still have lots of faith in the stallion (Ribchester), but that was much better than we could have expected.” - Tim Bostwick

“Once again I have to pay credit to Tom Blain and his team at Barton Stud,” Bostwick added. “All our mares board there, they just do such a fantastic job. Unfortunately the mare is barren this year, but she has a really nice Ten Sovereigns at foot. I believe Andreas Vesalius has been purchased to go to Hong Kong, which doubtless attracted these guys.

“He was a standout for us,” affirmed Kinane. “He is a gorgeous horse–but that is a gorgeous price, too.”

Mahony exultant

Tattersalls Chairman Edmond Mahony was rightly exultant over the final indices.

“At the end of Book 1 last week, we referenced the depth and diversity of the demand,” he said. “And the momentum established there has been very much sustained throughout a record-breaking Book 2.

Edmond Mahony

“New record turnover at any sale is always an achievement–but for Europe's largest yearling sale to reach new levels, as we all strive to return to normality after 18 months of turmoil, is pretty extraordinary. Only ten years ago, Book 2 had turnover of a fraction over 25,000,000 gns (AU$49 million) and an average price below 40,000 gns (AU$78,000). This year's has broken the 50,000,000 gns (AU$97 million) mark for the first time, produced a record average, in excess of 80,000 gns (AU$155,000), and also an unprecedented median.

"New record turnover at any sale is always an achievement–but for Europe's largest yearling sale to reach new levels... is pretty extraordinary." - Edmond Mahony

“Similar to Book 1, international buyers have again made a massive contribution to the market, with notable participation from American and Australian interests as well as from Hong Kong, Japan and throughout the Gulf region. But perhaps the most encouraging feature of the record-breaking Sale has been the domestic demand. British and Irish trainers have been the backbone of the Sale and to see such a voracious appetite for quality yearlings, not only at Books 1 and 2 but also at our Newmarket-based yearling sales last month, has been fantastic.

“As ever, we are hugely indebted to the consignors from Britain, Ireland and further afield, who make Books 1 and 2 of the October Yearling Sale the showcase for so many of the finest yearlings to be found in Europe. Consistent quality is the key to attracting the buyers in such numbers, and we now turn our attention to Book 3 where buyers will continue to find yearlings of the highest calibre.”

That catalogue opens on Thursday at 10am local.

Tattersalls October Sale
Craig Rounsefell
Boomer Bloodstock
Lope De Vega
First Light Racing
Ashleigh Dowley
Ciaron Maher
John Foote
Archie Alexander
Johnny McKeever
Time Test