Positive Start To Tattersalls July


The session-topping At Last | Tattersalls

By Amy Lynam

At Last (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), a half-sister to Australian sire sensation Zoustar (Aus) (Northern Meteor {Aus}), was widely expected to top trade on the first day of the Tattersalls July Sale and she did not disappoint, as Badgers Bloodstock were forced to concede to a winning bid of 420,000gns from Mick Flanagan. Offered as a wildcard (lot 177A) by the Castlebridge Consignment, At Last ran just two days ago at Roscommon, where she finished fifth for the Coolmore partners and Aidan O’Brien.

Flanagan confirmed he was acting on behalf of an unnamed client through his Townley Hall Bloodstock banner.

“She is a very athletic individual and, obviously, she’s a half-sister to a top sire, but most importantly, she is by Galileo,” said Flanagan of his purchase. “No matter whether it’s as a sire, or damsire, he is untouchable and he proved that again last week as the broodmare sire of Group 1 winner Invincibella (Aus). That was in Australia, which is probably where this filly will end up. My biggest regret from earlier in my career is not buying enough fillies by Galileo.”

A large number of Middle Eastern buyers attend the July Sale each year and a regular buyer is Gassim Mohammad Ghazali, who was Wednesday’s leading buyer with eight purchases totalling 758,000gns. Lot 281, Admiral Rous (Ire) (Henrythenavigator), was the most expensive of the bunch at 325,000gns, his value boosted by a Group 3 third in the Prix Paul de Moussac since the catalogue was printed.

Speaking after buying the 3-year-old colt, the Qatari trainer commented, “He’s been bought to be aimed at the Irish Thoroughbred Marketing Cup in February. He obviously ran well last time out, but most importantly, he ran well in Qatar before, so I know he likes the ground there. I hope he can be a group horse for us.” Ghazali’s reference to Admiral Rous’s experience in Qatar is in relation to his run in the Al Biddah Mile, a local Group 2 at Doha’s International Meeting, in which he finished fourth behind Global Spectrum (GB).

Crowds of buyers and busy trade made for a bright atmosphere throughout the day, as beaming sunshine and complimentary ice cream cones added to positive moods. The official statistics at the close of trade supported this, as the average increased by 2% to 26,628gns and the median by 22% to 11,000gns. A total of 230 lots were offered in comparison to 270 in 2018, a drop of 15%, but the turnover grew marginally in spite of this to 5,458,800gns.

An interesting element of any bloodstock sale is reading between the lines of a catalogue page; whether that be finding a physical more impressive than their breeding would suggest, or examining race form that may be far more intriguing than thought at first glance. One such example on Wednesday was Patrick Sarsfield (Fr) (lot 238), a 3-year-old son of Australia (GB) who had been placed on both his starts for Edward Lynam as a juvenile. Unseen since September, the Castlebridge-consigned colt’s form has nonetheless worked out well, as he finished third to Madhmoon (Ire) and Sydney Opera House (GB) on debut before finishing second to the latter next time out. Adding interest were those behind him on debut: Japan (GB) and Norway (Ire).

Following a battle of bids with Blandford Bloodstock’s Stuart Boman, the gavel fell in favor of young trainer Joseph O’Brien, who finally bid 230,000gns on behalf of an existing client. Explaining Lot 238’s appeal, he said, “Obviously, his form has worked out very well, though he’s been off for a while since then. He’s a nice horse, by a sire who’s doing well, and he could be a good middle-distance horse next year.”

Wamathaat (Speightstown) (lot 67) was a more obvious highlight on paper, the $550,000 yearling counting GI Santa Anita H. winner Gift Box (Twirling Candy) and dual Grade II winner Stonetastic (Mizzen Mast) amongst her siblings. The unraced 3-year-old will now return to her country of birth, according to Eamonn Reilly, after being knocked down to the BBA Ireland agent at 220,000gns. “She’s been bought for Maurice Regan’s Newtown Anner Stud and will head to the U.S.,” Reilly said. “She was my pick of the whole sale. She’s had some great updates and vetted very well, but there are no exact plans for her yet, bar heading to America.”

Matt Coleman was found on the back stairs signing the docket for Silent Morning (GB) (Pivotal {GB}) (lot 140), after the unraced half-sister to four-time stakes winner Sound And Silence (GB) (Exceed And Excel {Aus}) fetched 155,000gns.

“She’s been bought for an English breeder,” commented Coleman, adding, “Pivotal needs no introduction as a broodmare sire and this filly is a strong, good-looking type with real commercial appeal.”

Looking to follow in Pivotal’s footsteps as a broodmare sire is his son Siyouni (Fr), whose winning daughter Scintilating (GB) (lot 169) fetched 130,000gns, with top breeder Paul McCartan handling the bidding and Anthony Stroud signing the docket. The Highclere Stud-consigned half-sister to Prolific (Ire) and Deal Breaker (GB) cost a pretty penny more than Anna Law, the dam of Battaash (Ire), who the shrewd McCartan sourced from the same sales ring for 14,000gns. “She’s a gorgeous filly,” commented the shrewd breeder, adding, “We all love Siyouni, and the family, and the model.” The 3-year-old is bound for Ballyphilip Stud and on future matings, McCartan said, “She may go to Showcasing (GB). If Advertise (GB) wins the July Cup on Saturday, she’ll definitely go to Showcasing.”

Saudi Arabia is the destination in store for Insurgence (GB) (Sepoy {Aus}) (lot 211) after the James Fanshawe-consigned 4-year-old was knocked down to Reda Al-Khalaf at 125,000gns. The chestnut made a successful return from a break when scoring over seven furlongs at Doncaster, with his fourth career win bringing his official BHA rating to 88.

The Meon Valley Stud-consigned Merseybeat (GB) (New Approach {Ire}) (lot 102), meanwhile, was offered unraced but her active page and Ribchester covering saw her price reach 105,000gns, courtesy of her purchaser Anthony Stroud. “[Half-sister] Twist ‘n’ Shake {GB} is pretty good and adds to the pedigree,” explained Stroud. “She could get an update on Friday if the Dubawi (Ire) colt out of Shirocco Star (GB) runs well–I hear they like him a lot.” Stroud Coleman Bloodstock bought the 2-year-old in question, now named Al Suhail (GB) and trained by Charlie Appleby, and he is entered in a seven furlong maiden at Newmarket. A 1,100,000gns yearling, he is a half-brother to G2 Dante S. winner Telecaster (GB) (New Approach).

As a half-sister to dual stakes winner and black-type producer Turning Light (Ger), Mouille Point (GB) (Motivator {GB}) (lot 178) was another offering with an attractive pedigree, with her Kodiac (GB) covering coming as an added bonus. Offered by the Castlebridge Consignment, the two-time winner was knocked down to Bertrand Le Metayer for 100,000gns.

The horses-in-training section is often a source of talent for the National Hunt sphere and obstacles can be seen in the future of Ragnar (GB) (Toronado {Ire}) (lot 328) after the 3-year-old sold from Kingwood Stud to Alex Elliott for 85,000gns. Bought for top jumps trainer Philip Hobbs, the bay has twice won over 10 furlongs but has potential to race over further, given that his dam is a half-sister to Erupt (Ire), who captured two Group 1 contests over a mile and a half, while another half-brother has won over hurdles on three occasions for Willie Mullins.

The first to bring excitement to the sales ring was Safe House (Ire) (lot 51), an Exceed And Excel (Aus) half-sister to multiple stakes winner Rebellion (GB) offered by Kingswood Stud in foal to Night Of Thunder (Ire). The gavel came down just in time for Matthew Houldsworth at 82,000gns, as Matthew Prior was forced to reject Robert O’Callaghan’s bid which came just a second too late. The successful buyer was buoyed by his unlucky rival, afterwards commenting, “Having Yeomanstown Stud as underbidder gives me confidence.”

Bought on behalf of David Weston and El Tanner’s Flintstone Stud near Manton, the 7-year-old boasted plenty of pluses, as the agent explained, “Flintstone Stud are commercial breeders and were keen on a relatively proven mare. You see what’s come before, have an idea of the stock the mare produces, and have a better understanding of what stallions would suit her as a result. She’s getting good-looking stock–Roger Charlton has the 2-year-old and her yearling colt by New Approach will sell at Book 2.”

The same price of 82,000gns was paid by Suzanne Roberts and Deerpark Stud for Deira Surprise (GB) (Slade Power {Ire}) (lot 144), a winning half-sister to G2 German 1000 Guineas heroine Unforgettable Filly (GB) and Group 3 scorer Raven’s Corner (Ire). The page hints at potential updates, given that the dam has a 2-year-old full-brother to Unforgetable Filly, memorably named Unforgetable Colt, and foaled a full-brother to Deira Surprise this year.

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