Updated on 09/15/2011 2:02PM

$1.5 million Woodman colt tops session


LEXINGTON, Ky. - The Keeneland September yearling sale, running a day behind due to the postponement of Tuesday's session until Wednesday, continued on an upswing Thursday with a session-topping $1.5 million Woodman half-brother to champion Jewel Princess bought by Aisling Cross, a Coolmore Stud staffer, signing as agent.

At the third session, the auction's first non-select session, average price jumped 21 percent to $140,896, while median rose 18 percent to $100,000. The session sold 264 yearlings for total revenue of $37,196,500.

The Tuesday session was canceled after the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, D.C. The sale resumed on Wednesday with a $6.4 million Storm Cat colt who went to Demi O'Byrne, agent for Michael Tabor and Coolmore Stud's John Magnier. That colt, the probable sale-topper for the 13-day auction, is out of Halory (Halo) and is a half-brother to four graded stakes-winners: Grade 2 winner Halory Hunter and Grade 3 winters Prory, Key Lory, and Brushed Halory. Lane's End, agent, sold the colt on behalf of Robert and Janice McNair's Stonerside Stables.

The second session Wednesday also produced a $2.3 million Deputy Minister filly bought by agent John Ferguson on behalf of Sheikh Mohammed al Maktoum. The filly, the probable top filly for the auction, is out of Grade 2 winner Cinnamon Sugar (Ire). Lane's End, agent, sold the filly.

The Wednesday session - the auction's second and final selected session - posted an 8 percent decline in average price, from $420,400 at last year's equivalent session to $385,721 this year. But median price rose 3 percent to $185,000. Overall, 197 yearlings sold Wednesday for gross revenue of $75,987,000, down 20 percent from last year, when 225 yearlings sold.

On Thursday, three $1 million-plus horses went through the ring, bringing the total number of millionaire yearlings to 18. Thursday's $1.5 million session-topper was a Woodman colt out of Jewell Ridge (Melyno [Ire]). Jewell Ridge also is the dam of Jewel Princess and stakes-winner Topaz Runner. Hill 'n' Dale Sales Agency, agent, sold the session-topper.

Earlier, Emmanuel de Seroux's Narvick International agency signed for a $1.4 million Mr. Greeley colt out of Grade 1 winner Dream Team (Cox's Ridge). Gainesway, agent, sold the colt, who is a half-brother to Grade 3-placed winner Olympic Cat.

Prince Ahmed bin Salman's The Thoroughbred Corp. purchased the day's other seven-figure yearling as of 5 p.m., a $1.1 million Indian Charlie--Inlaw (Gold Seam) colt sold by Paternostro and Herbener, agent.

As of 5 p.m. Thursday, there were 17 seven-figure yearlings at the sale.

The sales activity had returned virtually to normal by Thursday afternoon. Major buyers, including members of Coolmore Stud's bloodstock selection team and of Sheikh Mohammed's entourage, remained on the sale grounds and in Lexington Thursday morning due to continued closure of national airspace. But by 4 p.m. Lexington's Blue Grass Field was open again and Sheikh Mohammed's jet, still parked at the back of the airport property, had its engines running, indicating that the sheikh, Dubai's minister of defense, would likely depart Thursday night.

In the barn area, some consignors had hung flags from their shedrow roofs in a show of patriotism in the wake of the tragedy in New York and Washington. Keeneland officials, who announced yesterday that it has established a relief fund with its consignors and buyers, said it had raised nearly $132,000 in its first 48 hours of fundraising on sale grounds.

*Stallion Golden Gear, sire of stakes-winner Ginger Gold, will relocate from Mill Ridge Farm in Lexington to Wycombe House Stud in Reddick, Fla., for the 2002 season. The stallion will stand at Wycombe House Stud under a lease agreement. His fee will be $6,000.