Oasis Dream Filly Tops Challenging Orby Sale

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Lot 343, Oasis Dream filly | Goffs

DONCASTER, UK—The weather brightened for the final session of the Goffs Orby Sale but it has to be said that the vibe did not. True, the clearance rate remained at a respectable level, with those vendors who decided to sell continuing to be realistic in their reserves. But there was a high number of withdrawals across the two days, with an extra bunch coming on Thursday morning as Wednesday's results were digested. This, together with a dearth of international participation compared to normal, and minimal activity from the regular major buyers, led to results that are disappointing set against recent good years, though understandable perhaps in this grim year.

Everything about 2020 is out of the ordinary, and for Goffs, moving Ireland's flagship yearling sale to Britain was described by Group Chief Executive Henry Beeby as “a monumental decision and one that we did not take lightly.”

He added, “I do not think anyone approached the sale expecting anything other than it to be tough but we salute our vendors for the way they adapted and read the market as evidenced by the 80% clearance rate which, whilst not up to recent years, demonstrates that vendors were pragmatic in their approach and worked with us to deliver the best results in the circumstances. That said, we absolutely recognise that the returns of the last two days have been hard on many vendors and we share their pain as we have always prided ourselves on delivering the best prices for the lots we offer. However, we are all aware of the havoc being wreaked on all walks of life by Covid-19 and the impact on the global economy so it is understandable that there are less orders around for racehorses from buying entities, big and small. Those challenges are, of course, exacerbated by the ongoing issues around prize-money that we read about on a daily basis, whilst there are several significant players from recent editions of the Orby Sale that are not present for one reason or another.”

As indicated, figures contracted significantly. Having converted the previous year's returns to sterling, turnover was down by 44% at £21,142,000. The average of £67,981 was down by 35% and the median dropped by 18% to £47,000. Of the 474 yearlings catalogued, 389 were offered for sale and 311 of those were sold. The clearance rate for the final day was slightly lower than the sale overall, at 77% from 143 sold, bringing a second-day tally of £9,528,000, average of £66,629 and median of £45,000.

Roundhill's Gem

Roundhill Stud brought just one yearling to the Goffs Orby Sale and the filly from the farm's signature family duly ended up as the market leader, selling to Angus Gold on behalf of Shadwell for a sale-topping £450,000.

David Redvers had signalled his interest early for the Oasis Dream (GB) filly (lot 343) but Gold joined in the bidding from outside the ring and was intent on signing up the first foal of Princess De Lune (Ire) (Shamardal) as a future broodmare prospect for the Shadwell operation.

“Sheikh Hamdan said to concentrate on finding some fillies. We had a go on the Green Room filly yesterday, but I loved this filly. She is out of a Shamardal mare who had plenty of ability and she is from a tough-running family,” said Gold.

The Shadwell team has not been as active in the 2020 yearling market as it has been in recent years, but Sheikh Hamdan has been a notable supporter of the Orby Sale in particular and it brings a degree of reassurance to see him engage in the pursuit of some select fillies. The page for this particular yearling is chock-a-block with bold black type.

Princess De Lune won her Newbury maiden with ease for Roger Charlton before suffering a setback which saw her never reclaim that early promising form in three subsequent starts. Her full-siblings are the dual Australian Group 2 winner and promising young Swettenham Stud stallion Puissance De Lune (Ire) and the listed winner and Group 2-placed Queen Power (Ire). Then there is her three-parts brother Zabeel Prince (Ire) (Lope De Vega {Ire}), who won the G1 Prix d'Ispahan, and her half-sister Serena's Storm (Ire) (Statue Of Liberty) is the dam of dual Group 1 winner Rizeena (Ire) (Iffraaj {GB}).

“She's a stunning filly and I hope she will be good for Shadwell,” said Roundhill Stud owner Bobby Donworth. “We did a lot of head-scratching about which sale to put her in but we felt we should support Goffs and this has worked out well. We also have a half-sister to Rizeena and the brother to Zabeel Prince selling next week in Newmarket so it made sense to split them up. Her dam had a huge amount of ability and she should prove to be a good broodmare.”

Donworth added that Princess De Lune lost her foal by Kingman (GB) this year but is now back in foal to Night Of Thunder (Ire).

Channel's Sister To Haggas

On a morning with a number of late withdrawals, an early highlight was provided by lot 253, a Sea The Stars (Ire) half-sister to G1 Prix de Diane winner Channel (Ire) (Nathaniel {Ire}) who sold to the Tsui family's Sunderland Holdings for £360,000.

John Clarke conducted the bidding for the filly bred by Pat O'Kelly's Kilcarn Stud and said afterwards, “Mrs Tsui absolutely loved the pedigree and though she hasn't seen the filly herself she was very keen to buy her.”

The filly's dam Love Magic (GB) (Dansili {GB}) is a daughter of the G1 Cheveley Park S. winner Magical Romance (Ire) (Barathea {Ire}) and thus a half-sister to a decent performer by Sea The Stars in Australia in the exported Werribee Cup winner Tall Ship (Ire). The family also includes Magical Romance's half-sister, the champion 3-year-old Alexandrova (Ire) (Sadler's Wells), who landed the Oaks, Irish Oaks and Yorkshire Oaks for Aidan O'Brien.

Clarke added that the filly will join William Haggas in Newmarket next year. Her dam has a filly foal by Saxon Warrior (Jpn) and is now in foal to Frankel (GB).

Channel, who was her dam's second foal, transpired to be one of the real bargains of the 2017 Orby Sale, where she was bought privately by Ghislain Bozo of Meridian International for just €18,000 before being resold at the Arqana Breeze-Up for €70,000.

No Hiding For This Angel

Peter Brant added to his collection of Orby yearlings on Wednesday when agent Demi O'Byrne outbid Richard Ryan for Yeomanstown Stud's brother to the G3 Princess Margaret S. winner Angel's Hideaway (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}) at £355,000.

The late April colt (lot 438) is the result of the sixth mating with Dark Angel for the Kheleyf mare The Hermitage (Ire), a black-type earning 2-year-old in her racing days who now has three winners to her name, including G2 Mill Reef S. runner-up Perfect Angel (Ire).

“She's been good to everybody really,” said breeder and consignor David O'Callaghan of the mare bought for 29,000gns as a 3-year-old at the Tattersalls Horses-in-Training Sale. Offered as yearlings at Goffs, three of her previous offspring have fetched €200,000, €390,000 and €440,000, respectively.

O'Callaghan continued, “She's turned into a bit of an Orby specialist and she has a colt foal by Dark Angel who will be coming next year.”

O'Callaghan admitted that the last two days of trade have been tricky but said, “We bring them to sell and we've got most of them sold. We've got to keep clearing the decks.”

Value Galileos

For months now there has been talk of this season's sales being a buyers' market and, indeed, for those with some money to spend at the higher level with an eye on the future, some lovely broodmare prospects can be found at a much more reasonable rate than usual.

That is certainly the case for lot 311, the Galileo (Ire) three-parts sister to Irish Derby winner Trading Leather (Ire) (Teofilo {Ire}), who was acquired by Yuesheng Zhang's Yulong Investments for  £185,000.

“With a pedigree like that she is worth that all day long,” was the assessment of agent Michael Donohoe of BBA Ireland. “She'll go to Jessica Harrington and she may take a little bit of time but she'll make a lovely broodmare for Mr Zhang, who has mares in Ireland and Australia. He was very keen to support this sale.”

The March-born filly was sold by Manister House Stud on behalf of Coolmore and the same breeder also offered another daughter of Galileo through Baroda Stud (lot 305). The filly is out of the Australian G1 Ascot Vale S winner Nechita (Aus) (Fastnet Rock {Ire}) and was bought by Cathy Grassick for £140,000.

Churchill Gets The Nod

The first crop of the dual Guineas winner Churchill (Ire) will take to the track next season and a number of those nascent racehorses found favour with Orby buyers. Thirteen of the Coolmore sire's 16 horses offered over the last two days were sold at an average of £86,423.

At the head of that list was lot 336, a colt bred by Brian O'Neill and pinhooked last year by Hamish Macauley for €125,000 at the Goffs November Sale. Returned to the ring by Glenvale Stud, the half-brother to Group 3 winner Onenightidreamed (Ire) (Footsetpsinthesand {GB}) was bought for £220,000 by Jamie McCalmont.

Johnny Murtagh, Jessica Harrington, Paddy Twomey and Keith Dalgleish are among the trainers taking charge of Churchill's Orby graduates, while Peter and Ross Doyle went to £140,000 to buy lot 321, the Kildaragh Stud-bred and -consigned colt out of the listed-placed Orcia (Ire) (Shamardal). The Kavanagh family has raced three generations of the colt's female family, including his grandam, the French listed winner Amathia (Ire) (Darshaan {GB}), who is a multiple black-type producer.

The National Stud's freshman sire Time Test (GB) had just one filly at the Orby Sale but she made it to the list of six-figure lots when sold to Daithi Harvey for £100,000 on behalf of Highland Yard. The daughter of Sunny Again (GB) (Shirocco {Ger}) (lot 425) was offered by Mount Coote Stud and is a half-sister to this season's St Leger runner-up Berkshire Rocco (Fr) (Sir Percy {GB}). She will head back to Ireland to be broken in by Ben Harvey before being trained by Gavin Cromwell.

From No To Yes

Lot 388, the full-brother to champion sprinter and young stallion Ten Sovereigns (No Nay Never), was marked as withdrawn from the sale on Wednesday morning but later appeared among the results as a private sale to Mitsuru Hashida, the trainer of Deirdre (Jpn) (Harbinger {GB}) who runs in Sunday's Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.

No Nay Never recorded another Group 1 winner at the weekend when Jeff Smith's Alcohol Free (GB) landed the Juddmonte Cheveley Park S. and his offspring at the Orby Sale included lot 314, the second foal of the Pivotal (GB) mare Novantae (GB), who sold for £125,000 to David Redvers on behalf of Cornthrop Bloodstock. The filly was consigned by Luke Barry's Manister House Stud, which bred her in partnership with American agent Gatewood Bell, who bought Novantae for €33,000 at the Goffs November Mares' Sale. Though only placed in her racing days, the first three dams of the 7-year-old are all black-type winners and her immediate family includes this season's exciting juvenile Master Of The Seas (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}), winner of the G2 Superlative S. for Godolphin.

Sale Transfer Essential

Reflecting on the two days of trade at Goffs's sister complex in Doncaster, Henry Beeby said, “The Irish National Yearling Sale has long been part of the fabric of Irish life as it is a significant occasion with a rich history and tangible relevance to the bloodstock community as well as the wider Irish public. So to move the Orby Sale to the UK was a monumental decision and one that we did not take lightly. However, we had to take action in what we felt were the best interests of every vendor given the circumstances in which we all find ourselves as so many had entrusted us with many of their best yearlings despite the uncertainty that existed at the time of entry.

“We are, of course, fortunate to have the world's newest sales complex in the UK and it is a source of some considerable pride that so many newcomers to Doncaster this week have been so complimentary about the facility we built as DBS. It allowed us to showcase the superb yearlings that made up Orby 20 and we repeat our thanks to each vendor for their support. We recognise that the move presented huge logistical issues and extra costs for everyone, and that it caused some debate, but our feeling is that the large crowd of potential purchasers that arrived from Sunday demonstrated the enduring appeal of the Orby Sale as a rich and consistent course of quality.”

He added, “It is plain that Orby 20 is way behind its recent predecessors. Whether that is mirrored elsewhere in the coming weeks remains to be seen but we send our best wishes to everyone selling in Newmarket as this is one interlinked industry whilst we have worked with closely with Tattersalls throughout this crisis as both organisations have done everything in our collective power to provide as near as normal a market place as possible.

“In fact if there is one achievement from this week it is in the staging of a Thoroughbred auction, and we are indebted to many people and entities for their hard work, adaptability and cooperation, not least Doncaster Council who worked with us to find solutions rather than problems. So I want to repeat our sincere thanks to every attendee for their good humoured acceptance of the protocols in place to protect everyone and ensure compliance with the latest Government directives. I know they were irksome, annoying and tiresome but we are grateful that everyone acknowledged their necessity. Let's hope that Orby 21 is back where it belongs. In Ireland doing what it does best—selling the best for the best to the best.”

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