Record Session Kicks Off Tattersalls Book 2

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Dwayne Woods bought the session-topping Night Of Thunder colt | Tattersalls

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NEWMARKET, UK-the middle market has flourished at the yearling sales transatlantically thus far in 2021, and that trend proved out again on Monday during the first of three sessions of Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale, where figures were not only well up on the remarkably strong 2020 renewal staged in the midst of the pre-vaccine pandemic, but at this stage also trending ahead of 2019's record edition. The first day of Book 2 saw records for turnover, average and median for a session at Book 2. Of the 247 yearlings offered, 212 found new homes (86%) for an aggregate of 18,935,500gns that was up 24% on last year's corresponding session. The average jumped 27% year on year to 89,318gns, while the median climbed 35% to 70,000gns. The average for the whole of Book 2 in 2019 was 78,224gns, and the median 55,500gns.

Sean Woods made his return to the Newmarket training ranks this season after nearly 20 years in Hong Kong. He has notched 10 wins this season and will have a serious bullet to fire sometime next year in the form of a Night Of Thunder (Ire) colt (lot 604) picked up by his brother Dwayne Woods for 375,000gns on Monday.

“He was stunning; to me he was the best colt in the sale,” Dwayne Woods said after signing the ticket. “He's very strong, probably the cleanest Night Of Thunder I've ever seen– conformationally, strength, everything. Night Of Thunder is a wonderful sire, but they are a little bit incorrect in front as he is. This was the most beautiful model. I see him as being a six furlong horse to a miler, or more like seven furlongs to a mile-a Guineas horse if I ever saw one, and hence we went that strongly on him.”

Sean Woods added: “he'll have a bit of time now and come to us in January. He's for one of my existing owners.”

Bred by Cranford Bloodstock, the colt was offered by Rathbarry Stud. He is out of Harlequin Girl (GB) (Where Or When {Ire}) and his 2-year-old full-brother Hanaady (Ire), who was bought by Shadwell for 110,000gns at this sale last year, won on Sept. 29 for trainer Ed Dunlop. Harlequin Girl is a half-sister to three stakes horses, including G2 Gimcrack S. scorer Blaine (GB) (Avonbridge {GB}), and also to the dam of this year's G3 Chester Vase winner Youth Spirit (Ire) (Camelot {GB}).

There is perhaps nothing to keep buyers around until late into the evening quite like a Galileo (Ire) filly out of a young stakes-winning mare, and that is exactly what materialized when Manister House Stud's filly out G3 Cornwallis S. winner Mrs Danvers (GB) (Hellvelyn {GB}) (lot 768) strolled into the ring four lots from the end of the session. Bids flew from throughout the ring, but the final blow was at last landed online by BBA Ireland/Yulong Investments at 320,000gns.

It would be rare indeed to see a mare who couldn't find a home for £1,000 as a 2-year-old among Galileo's mates, but Mrs Danvers has punched remarkably above the weight of her page. Unsold at the Tattersalls Ireland Ascot February Sale four months before making her racecourse debut for owner/trainer Jonathan Portman, Mrs Danvers soon caused her value to skyrocket when winning at first asking at Lingfield by 3 1/4 lengths. She would proceed to sail unbeaten through a five-race juvenile campaign culminating in Newmarket's Cornwallis. Mrs Danvers has visited Galileo in her first three seasons at stud, and with her first foal, a colt, having unfortunately died, this filly will be the first to try to bolster the black-type on the page.

“She was an exceptional filly, especially for her age,” said Manister House Stud's Luke Barry in reference to the fact that the filly is a May 4 foal. “She had all the qualities of her sire but most importantly she very much looked like Mrs Danvers. Even for a May foal she looks sharp. We brought her here to stand out and we're thrilled that she sold very well. She has great quality, as will come with a Galileo, but Mrs Danvers has put a lot of strength and sharpness into her.”

New Frontier For Kingman

Kingman (GB) has enjoyed another fruitful season domestically and in the meantime he has begun to build up an admirable record in Hong Kong, with six winners from seven runners in that nation. Another son of the Juddmonte supremo is bound for Hong Kong, with the Hong Kong Jockey Club's representative Mick Kinane going to 300,000gns for lot 617 from Ballyhimikin Stud.

“He's by a great stallion and he's a lovely, correct model, which is what I want,” Kinane said. “I liked him from the first day I saw him and when he settled in up here he was a lovely colt.”

Commenting on the market, Kinane added, “It's like anything, good horses are hard to buy. This is the first one I've tried on today. We bought five last week, so we were happy.”

Lot 617 is the first foal out of Hunaina (Ire) (Tamayuz {GB}), who was bred by the Aga Khan Studs and raced by the Aga Khan through her first two seasons on the track. She was bought by Trevor Stewart through Stroud Coleman Bloodstock for €140,000 from the 2017 Goffs November Mares Sale, and went on to win the Listed Snowdrop Fillies' S. and G3 Prix Bertrand du Breuil Longines in Stewart's colours for trainer Henri Devin. This colt, her first foal, was bred by Stewart with James Hanley and Anthony Stroud. Hunaina is from the family of the dual Derby winner Harzand (Ire) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) and this year's G1 Irish Derby, G1 St Leger and G1 Grand Prix de Paris winner Hurricane Lane (Ire) (Frankel {GB}).

“We bought the mare as a 3-year-old in training and sent her to trainer Henri Devin and she won a listed race and a Group 3,” said Stewart. “We are very happy with the result. He is a really nice first foal; a good walking, strong individual. It is a nice start for the mare, who is at Ballyhimikin, and she had a colt by Sea The Stars this spring.”

There were seven Kingmans offered during the opening session of Book 2 and they filled two of the top three spots on the leaderboard. A filly by Kingman (lot 739) joined Ballyhimikin's colt late in the session at the 300,000gns mark when bought by Blandford Bloodstock's Richard Brown standing alongside John Gosden, who trained the sire through his Horse of the Year campaign.

Lot 739 was offered by breeder Appletree Stud, a Gloucestershire-based nursery run by former leading National Hunt rider Robert “Choc” Thornton that brought a three-horse draft to Book 2. She is the fifth foal out of the Moyglare Stud-bred Midnight Thoughts, who is unraced and was a high-profile buyback at the 2014 Keeneland November sale when led out unsold at $975,000. That valuation was based on the fact that Midnight Thoughts is a daughter of G2 Ribblesdale S. victress Irresistible Jewel (Ire) (Danehill), the dam of G1 Irish St Leger winner Royal Diamond (Ire) (King's Best), Ribblesdale winner Princess Highway (Street Cry {Ire}) and G3 Gladness S. winner Mad About You (Ire) (Indian Ridge).

Midnight Thoughts was acquired by Appletree Stud privately thereafter, and her third foal, Tomorrow's Dream (Fr) (Oasis Dream {GB}), was a winner and placed in Newmarket's Listed Rosemary S. while racing as an Appletree homebred with trainer William Haggas. Midnight Thoughts has a foal full-brother to Tomorrow's Dream, and was covered by Pinatubo this season.

“It's a fantastic result, in the region of double what we thought,” Thornton said. “Going into the ring, we knew we had good people behind us but we didn't expect that. It's a complete credit to Jonny Sutton, the stud groom. He has done a hell of a job with her and turned her inside out. If you look at the pictures of her online, and look at her now, they were only taken 10 days ago; she has really changed. She is by far the best daughter out of Midnight Thoughts and, as this is a business, we have put her in the sale and we have got a great result.”

Brown said after signing the ticket, “She was an extremely attractive filly. She's come from a very good, young farm in Gloucestershire. She had a fantastic shape. I've seen her quite a lot; she put on a great show out there. I bought her for John Gosden for a client of ours and we were both extremely keen to get her. John thought she was the outstanding Kingman filly in the sale and so did I. He probably knows more about Kingman than me. She's a lovely, classy, elegant filly by a proper stallion and it's a proper page.”

Brown, who picked up a daughter of Gleneagles two lots later, admitted the strength of the market had made for a difficult start to the day.

“We had to go strong, but the market has been very strong today,” he said. “It was a very frustrating morning; I bid on a lot of horses before lunch time and it wasn't going very well, but we got a couple there and she was at the top of the list.”

It's A Yes For No Nay Never Filly

Andrew Balding has trained one of the best yet by ascendant young sire No Nay Never in this season's G1 Coronation S. and G1 Sussex S. winner Alcohol Free (Ire), and Balding secured another by the Coolmore sire for Kingsclere when going to 260,000gns on Monday for lot 561, a colt from Newsells Park Stud.

“We thought he was a lovely colt and we've had some success with the stallion,” Balding noted, saying the purchase was made on behalf of an undisclosed client. “We're thrilled to get him.”

As detailed last week in the TDN, Balding is assisted at the sales by the formidable team of Emma Balding, his mother, and racing manager Tessa Hetherington, and Balding noted the colt passed inspection by each of his discerning team members.

“He was one of our top picks of the ones we've seen over the three days, so we're delighted to have him,” he said.

Jeff Smith's Alcohol Free, who also won last year's G1 Cheveley Park S., is entered in Saturday's G1 Queen Elizabeth II S. on Champions Day at Ascot, and Balding said it is “all systems go” for the 3-year-old filly. Alcohol Free looks to bounce back from a sixth-place finish behind Mishriff (Ire) (Make Believe {GB}) in the G1 Juddmonte International, and she drops back to her favoured mile trip.

Balding has enjoyed a remarkable season with the likes of Sandrine (GB), Spanish Mission, Berkshire Shadow (GB) and Bangkok (Ire) also among his group winners. Balding lost his top spot in the trainers' championship to Charlie Appleby after a great last weekend for latter, but Balding was philosophical about the demotion.

“It was inevitable, I am afraid,” he smiled. “We were probably punching above our weight for a good while there, but it is what it is and natural order has been restored. We have had a wonderful season.”

Lot 561 is the first foal out of Fleeting Fancy (Ire) (Galileo {Ire}), a placed daughter of the G3 Derrinstown Stud 1000 Guineas Trial winner and G1 Irish Oaks and G2 Ribblesdale S.-placed Just Pretending (Giant's Causeway). Fleeting Fancy is likewise a full-sister to the black type-placed Persia (Ire) and Visage (Ire). She was bought for €480,000 at Arqana December in 2019, carrying this colt, by Dean Hawthorne on behalf of the Australian-based Jonathan Munz of GSA Bloodstock, who bred him.

Wilson Broadening His Racing Horizons

Lope De Vega had two yearlings feature among the top eight on Monday and one of those is headed Down Under, with owner Noel Wilson signing the docket on lot 657, a colt from Ballyhimikin Stud, at 250,000gns while seated alongside his French-based trainer Eoghan O'Neill.

Wilson, who is based in Kent and is a former Sun racing editor who is also involved in property and other investments, has horses in training with O'Neill as well as Francis Graffard and Christophe Ferland under his Just Wow Ltd. banner and has taken shares of horses in Australia to get his feet wet in the business there. Wilson also bought an Australia (GB) colt out of G3 Sweet Solera S. winner Nations Alexander (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}) from Book 1 last week for 200,000gns, and said he hopes to send his new purchases to British-born, Australian-based trainer Annabel Neasham.

Of the Lope De Vega colt, Wilson said, “He's very classy. He vetted superbly, he was a standout at the sale. I'm just looking for a good horse. There is quite a bit of stamina in the two I've bought-this one has a bit more speed, maybe a mile and a quarter. You never know.”

“I live in Kent but I've never had a horse in England,” Wilson said. “I've had horses in Australia come tenth and pick up 1500-quid. That's not the deciding factor, but it's indicative of what's going on. If you look at Australia, I've seen 90-rated horses place in Group 1s, and the money–if you have a horse that does have ability, you only have to look at some of the examples recently. I'm not really rich enough to support British racing.”

The complication of not being able to regularly see his runners isn't a problem, either, for Wilson.

“I set the alarm and I can see them,” he said. “I have Equidia in the kitchen. I don't need to go and watch them physically. When they lose its nice to turn around and make a cup of tea rather than having to get in a car and drive to a different country to get home.”

“He's come to see me once in 15 years,” O'Neill confirmed.

Wilson's Lope De Vega colt continued a good day for Ballyhimikin Stud and co-breeders James Hanley, Trevor Stewart and Anthony Stroud, who also sold lot 617, the 300,000gns Kingman colt, to the Hong Kong Jockey Club. The Lope De Vega colt is out of the listed-winning and Group 3-placed Kambura (Fr) (Literato {Fr}), who was bought by Stroud Coleman Bloodstock for €220,000 at Arqana December in 2016. She is a half-sister to four stakes horses and the Lope De Vega colt is her third foal. She produced a colt by Night Of Thunder this year and was covered by Pinatubo (Ire).

New England Stud and partners picked out the Intello (Ger) mare Ionic (GB) in foal to Lope De Vega for 450,000gns at the Tattersalls December Mares Sale of 2019, and the mare's first foal, a filly (lot 635), went some way toward repaying that investment when making 270,000gns from SackvilleDonald at Tattersalls on Monday. While Ionic was but a minor winner in France, her considerable value stems from the fact that her immediate family is steeped with high-quality black-type winners and producers. Ionic is a half-sister to listed winner Prudenzia (Ire) (Dansili {GB}), who is now best known as the dam of Group 1 winners Chicquita (Ire) and Magic Wand (Ire) as well as current Group 3-winning and Classic-placed 3-year-old Philomene (Ire). Another half-sister, Pacifique (Ire) (Montjeu {Ire}), has left behind the G3 Prix de Lutece victress Paix (Ire), while the listed winner and former Derby favourite English King (Fr) is also a sibling to Ionic. The proficiency of the line appears already very much to be trickling down to the next generation; Chicquita's first two foals are group placed, including this season's G1 Irish Oaks third Nicest (Ire) (American Pharoah).

Ionic produced a filly by Too Darn Hot this spring, and was bred back to Night Of Thunder.

Ed Sackville signed the ticket on behalf of SBA Racing, which campaigns the stakes-winning Kodiac (GB) fillies Frenetic (Ire) and Geocentric (Ire) with trainer Ger Lyons. The daughter of Ionic goes to William Haggas.

Star Filly For Winning Partnership

The stakes-placed Fasliyev mare Greenisland (Ire) has been a very useful producer for the Jennings Family's Stonethorn Stud. The 15-year-old mare is the dam of the listed-winning Boerhan (GB) (Sea The Stars {Ire}) and Shamshon (Ire) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}), who has run a remarkable 102 times for 16 wins, mostly for trainer Stuart Williams, winning as recently as August as a 10-year-old. Three of her progeny have sold for six figures at the sales, including a filly foal by Sea The Stars bought by SackvilleDonald for €350,000 at Goffs November in 2019, and her latest filly by Starspangledbanner (Aus) was added to that list on Monday when Hugo Merry went to 220,000gns for lot 600. The agent was acting on behalf of Andrew Rosen, who will partner with Andrew and Madeleine Lloyd Webber's Watership Down Stud, who consigned the filly. Rosen and the Lloyd Webbers currently race the winning 3-year-old filly Theory Of Music (Ire) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}) together with trainer Jessica Harrington. Theory Of Music is a full-sister to triple group winner Turret Rocks (Ire), whose Kingman colt was among the leading lights at Book 1 last week when selling to MV Magnier and Peter Brant's White Birch Farm for 1.1-million gns. Theory Of Music cost 290,000gns at Book 1 last year.

“She's been bought for my very good client Andrew Rosen to partner with the Lloyd Webbers,” said Merry. “We bought a filly last year that's won and [Rosen] is a longstanding friend and client of the farm, so we've seen this filly around. She's bred by the Jennings' who have bred a lot of good horses. We were just trying to find a really nice filly who might work out, then have some residual value to go back to the farm to breed together.”

“The flaxen mane,” Merry quipped when asked what about the filly appealed to him. “Our sight is deteriorating, so the instruction was to get one we could see out in the field.”

“She was just a lovely shape,” he added. “The sire has had a great year. We would have liked to have had her for a bit less but it wasn't to be. The good ones are making the money.”

Le Havre Colt A Pinhooking Home Run

Jamie Railton enjoyed a pinhooking homerun courtesy of his Le Havre (Ire) colt out of Lady Francesca (GB) (Montjeu {Ire}) (lot 676), who was signed up by John Warren under the Highclere Agency banner for 230,000gns. Railton purchased the colt from this ring last year for 58,000gns under his Cill Dara Bloodstock banner.

“Some of these foals turn around, and some don't,” Railton said. “I particularly liked him as a foal and some of them work and some of them don't. The life of a pinhooker is not a straightforward one, and I am incredibly lucky to be surrounded by some exceptional people who keep me upright. I feel very privileged to have the people around me that I do. It is the people who show faith in us as a company and our organization. We have some loyal supporters, both involved in this horse and other horses. I am very grateful for all the people who support us in the good times and the bad times.”

It was 14 years ago at this sale during Book 1 that breeder Floors Stud parted with Lady Francesca for 21,000gns. She was scooped up by David Joseph, who raced her to one win and a pair of listed placings with trainer William Muir. Newsells Park Stud plucked her out of the 2009 Tattersalls December Mares Sale, and bred the Le Havre colt out of her before selling her for 40,000gns back at Park Paddocks last year, where she was bought by John Hammond. The page, meanwhile, had continued to improve, with Lady Francesca's half-sister Purr Along (GB) (Mount Nelson {GB}) winning Group 3s in Ireland and France and another sister Katawi (GB) (Dubawi {Ire}) winning at listed level.

Siyouni To The Fore

Five-time Group 1 winner St Mark's Basilica (Fr), the world's current co-highest rated horse, has been one of the poster children for the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale having cost 1.3-million gns at Book 1 two years ago, and a pair of colts by his sire Siyouni (Fr) featured among the leading lights early in Monday's session when selling for 200,000gns apiece.

First up was lot 537, Whatton Manor Stud's first foal out of Faay (Ire) (Dark Angel {Ire}). The 6-year-old mare was placed on the racecourse herself, but holds plenty of residual value being a full-sister to the speedy pair of Mecca's Angel (Ire) and Markaz (Ire). The former won the G1 Nunthorpe S. twice, while Markaz was a multiple Group 3-winning sprinter. Faay was a 400,000gns purchased by Charlie Gordon-Watson on behalf of Abdullah Saaed al Naboodah at Book 1 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale, and her first foal appears bound for the breeze ups, having been bought by Mick Murphy of Longways Stables. Murphy has already had success re-selling Siyounis; he and his partner Sarah O'Connell pinhooked Al Raya (GB) and Le Brivido (Fr) by the sire, and both went on to be Group 3 winners.

Lot 576, meanwhile, has already provided an excellent pinhooking return. The son of the placed Fusion (Ire) (Cape Cross {Ire}) was the selection of Liam and Jenny Norris at last year's Tattersalls December Foal Sale for 92,000gns, and he rewarded that roll of the dice with a winning bid of 200,000gns from John Dance's Manor House Stud on Monday. Fusion is a half-sister to the champion and multiple stakes producer Attraction (GB) (Efisio), with a further two of her sisters having produced stakes horses. Fusion's 2-year-old filly Atomic Lady (Fr) has won twice this season and has been listed-placed since the catalogue was printed. The Siyouni colt was bred by Floors Farming.

“He's been a very straightforward horse and we're absolutely delighted for the client,” said Jenny Norris. “He's a very good mover and a beautiful individual. He vetted well and he's been going down well right from the start and he's behaved impeccably. There are some nice little updates in the pedigree too. So those all help and it's good to see trade is strong.”

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