Brisk Trade as Book 3 Concludes


Aqua Regia | Keeneland photo

By Jessica Martini

LEXINGTON, Ky – Book 3 of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale closed Sunday with vibrant trade and numbers up from last year’s corresponding section. The 2017 Book 3 average rose 12.2% from 2016, while the median was up 17.5%. During the two sessions of Book 3, 512 horses sold for $30,198,500. The average was $58,981 and the median was $47,000. The top price during Book 3 was $275,000. Eight horses brought $200,000 or more during the two days. The Book 3 buy-back rate was 24.7%, compared to 32.6% a year ago.

Last year’s Book 3 section saw 459 horses sell for $24,122,700. The average was $52,555 and the median was $40,000. The top price was $550,000 and there were 13 horses selling for $200,000 or more.

Through six sessions of the 12-day auction, 1,172 horses have grossed $174,295,5000. The cumulative average of $148,716 is down 4.63% from last year’s corresponding figure and the median of $80,000 is up 6.67%. The buy-back rate stands at 25.63%. It was 30.77% a year ago.

Chris Brothers of Xavier International Bloodstock went to $260,000 to secure the day’s top-priced lot, the 6-year-old mare Aqua Regia (Pollard’s Vision), for $260,000 from the consignment of Tom Evans’s Trackside Farm.

“It’s been extremely competitive,” Brothers said of the November market. “All of the good stock, anything worth anything, you have to fight and go 20-30% over what you would have normally spent. It’s a strong market right now.”

The Keeneland November sale continues through Saturday with sessions beginning daily at 10 a.m.


Aqua Regia Leads All the Way

Graded stakes placed Aqua Regia (Pollard’s Vision–Phu Cat, by Tabasco Cat), whose weanling colt by Liam’s Map sold for $310,000 during Friday’s session of the Keeneland November sale, sold for a session-topping $260,000 to Xavier International Bloodstock. The 6-year-old mare, in foal to Dialed In, was consigned by Tom Evans’s Trackside Farm.

“She is a beautiful mare from a good family and she’s in foal to the right sire at the moment,” Xavier Bloodstock’s Chris Brothers, who was bidding on behalf of an undisclosed client, said. “It was a little bit more than what I wanted to spend, but I think she was worth it. The quality here keeps rising to the top. You’ve got to come in like that if you want to buy something nice.”

Aqua Regia (hip 1656) was purchased by St. Elias and West Point Thoroughbreds for $80,000 at the 2013 OBS June Sale and was third in their colors in the 2014 GIII Monmouth Oaks. In addition to her Liam’s Map weanling, the mare also has a yearling colt by Freedom Child.


Carpe Diem Colt to Bloodstock Investments

Katie Taylor has been busy this week stocking Taylor Made’s Bloodstock Investments and she went to $200,000 to secure a colt from the first crop of Carpe Diem (Giant’s Causeway) for the pinhooking partnership Sunday at Keeneland.

Hip 1810 is out of Hot Spa (Latent Heat), a half-sister to multiple group winner Mendip (Harlan’s Holiday) and stakes winners Dig Deep (Candy Ride {Arg}). WinStar purchased the mare, in foal to Harlan’s Holiday, for $160,000 at the 2013 Keeneland November sale. The weanling was bred by WinStar in New York and was consigned by Taylor Made Sales Agency.

“I really liked the shape of that horse,” Taylor said. “We bought a horse, an Uncle Mo, last year that we did really well with and they looked a lot alike to me. They have the same body, same type. He’s correct and I see a lot of room for improvement. I really like Carpe Diem–I’ve seen a lot of them at this sale and he was my favorite.”

Carpe Diem, winner of the 2015 GI Toyota Blue Grass S., has had 14 weanlings sell this week at Keeneland for a gross of $1,840,000 and an average of $131,429. The 5-year-old stallion stands at WinStar Farm for $25,000.

Bloodstock Investments also purchased a filly by Carpe Diem (hip 563) for $65,000 earlier in the sale.

“They all have a really racy look to them,” Taylor said of the Carpe Diems she has seen. “They are really well-balanced. I like a horse with a three-dimensional sort of shoulder and a thin neck and he seems to throw that a lot. I think he’s going to get it done. He’s a pretty nice sire so far.”

Hip 1810 was the 11th purchase of the sale for Bloodstock Investments. The partnership also acquired a filly by Empire Maker (hip 294) for $285,000 and a colt by Uncle Mo (hip 92) for $275,000.

“It keeps growing,” Taylor said of the partnership, now in its fifth year. “It’s been great. We get more and more people who have never owned horses before who join. I think it’s a fun experience. I’m glad they have more horses to follow this year. We go from year-to-year, so it’s a 14-month package. Every partner owns a little piece of everything.”

This year’s group currently includes 19 horses. In addition to the weanlings, there is one mare in the package.

“We have one mare that we purchased who we will breed and flip her back next year,” Taylor explained.


DeBerdt Busy Buying for Mishref

Bloodstock agent Bruno DeBerdt was one of the most prolific buyers at the week-old November sale, purchasing 12 horses for a total of $871,000 and an average of $72,583 on behalf of Saudi Arabian client Khalid Mishref.

“Khalid and I got way back from the days of Prince Ahmed bin Salman,” DeBerdt, who purchased horses for the late prince’s The Thoroughbred Corp. in the 1990s, said. “Khalid has decided to get involved in American buying and selling.”

Among the purchases are five weanlings, including a son of Palace Malice (hip 319) for $185,000 and a colt by Awesome Again (hip 172), and seven broodmares led by Candy Trophy (Candy Ride {Arg}) (hip 1698) and Splendid Gold (Mineshaft) (hip 1560), both acquired for $50,000.

“He is buying a few broodmares to send back home,” DeBerdt said. “The mares will be sent back to Saudi Arabia. He manages one of the largest racing stables over there, so they have stallions and mares.”

DeBerdt continued, “The babies will stay here and then we will make a decision whether they will sell as yearlings or if he’ll keep one or two to race.”

DeBerdt is pleased with the horses he has been able to acquire, but acknowledged it has been a competitive week of bidding.

“We are looking for good, athletic-looking horses,” he said. “We haven’t been stealing anything, but that being said, I think we’ve landed on some pretty good horses. I think we’re paying about 20% more than we wanted and budgeted for, but that is kind of the nature of the game right now.”

Of Mishref, DeBerdt said, “You’ll see more of him. He wants to get involved in the yearling-to-2-year-old pinhooking, but I kind of put the brakes on that. I said, ‘Let’s do baby steps first.’ We don’t want to get too big too fast. He is a wonderful man, he’s very knowledgeable, he’s very good on the pedigrees. Khalid and I go back many, many years and it’s a good working relationship.”


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