01/10/2007 12:00AM

Bettarun Fast sells for $350,000


LEXINGTON, Ky. - Young racemares and broodmare prospects continued to rule the market on Wednesday as Keeneland's eight-day January all-ages sale neared the end of its third session.

Buyers continued to pick and choose carefully through the catalog, often landing in groups on a handful of top offerings. By 5 p.m., the day's highest price was $350,000 for the 4-year-old broodmare prospect Bettarun Fast. Southern Equine Stables purchased the filly from the Hill 'n' Dale Sales agency.

A Florida-bred Kelly Kip filly, Bettarun Fast was a two-time Grade 3 winner in 2006 and has earnings of $255,505. She is a winner on both dirt and turf. She is a daughter of the unraced Dispersal mare Split Decision.

Wednesday's top yearling at 5 p.m. was a $310,000 Chapel Royal colt out of stakes-placed Casanova Storm, by Storm Cat. Trade Wind Farm bought the colt from Kildare Stud, agent. The yearling is a half-brother to $192,000 earner Casanova Slammer and to stakes winner Cherry Hill Lady.

On Tuesday, the auction's second session saw a $750,000 high price for the 10-year-old broodmare Solvig, who sold in foal to Afleet Alex. David and Adrian Munro's Highfield Stock Farm made the purchase. Mr. and Mrs. Rick Abbott's Charlton agency consigned Solvig as part of the F. Eugene Dixon estate's dispersal.

The Tuesday session posted losses across the board, selling 267 horses for $23,112,200, down 6 percent from last year, when 246 horses sold. The average fell 14 percent to $86,563, and median was down 15 percent to $47,000.

Point Ashley will go to Storm Cat

Grade 1 winner Point Ashley, who brought a $1.8 million final bid from Hill 'n' Dale Farms owner John Sikura on Monday as the January auction's probable sale-topper, will be bred to Storm Cat in 2007.

Ahmed Zayat had offered the

3-year-old filly as a racing or broodmare prospect through Hill 'n' Dale's consignment agency. But Sikura is opting not to race the filly, a finalist for the 2006 juvenile filly championship title.

"Point Ashley is already an accomplished Grade 1 winner by Horse of the Year and six-time Grade 1 winner Point Given, which is why we went to $1.8 million to purchase her," Sikura said in an announcement issued Wednesday. "As it was uncertain if she could make the Kentucky Oaks with the time off that she had, we felt it prudent to breed her this year."

Point Ashley last ran in the Sept. 30 Oak Leaf Breeders' Cup Stakes, in which she finished second.

Jackson more active on seller side

Stonestreet Stable owner Jess Jackson purchased the January sale's most expensive yearling so far on Monday, paying $500,000 for a Distorted Humor half-brother to Grade 3 winner Areyoutalkintome. But he was more active as a seller. Through Wednesday, he had sold seven horses through the Taylor Made agency: $260,000 Shepherd's Star to Fred Hertrich III, $190,000 Alinechka to Reynolds Bell Jr., $170,000 Cat Ali to Naveed Chowhan, $160,000 Dancing Shoes to Domino Stud, $110,000 Instant Thought to Sean Fitzhenry, $70,000 Whitewashed to J. Chester Porter, and $50,000 Rahy's Darlin to Lucy's Farm.

Three more - Takeaway, Cafe Concerto, and Dance Awhile - had failed to reach their reserves.

The selling role is new for Jackson, a prominent buyer of high-end bloodstock at auction. But it gave him the opportunity to stick by a principle he's been talking about a lot lately: transparency in bloodstock transactions. In 2006, Jackson successfully lobbied the Kentucky legislature for a new law designed to protect horse buyers whose agents receive undisclosed commissions from sellers. As a seller himself, Jackson pointedly identified the bloodstock he offered through Taylor Made's sales agency as being sold on behalf of Stonestreet Stable.

"I think we owe the industry full disclosure of who owns interests in horses," Jackson said. "Our policy is to disclose."

On another matter, Jackson also said he is considering starting a Thoroughbred breeding farm in California. Jackson already owns breeding farms in Kentucky.

"I already have the land," Jackson said, adding that he owns 6,400 acres near Solvang that could be turned into a Thoroughbred breeding operation. "It's a question of when we send the mares and whether we want to start in the top 5 percent or the top 10 percent of breeding programs."

Mare comes with a bonus

At Tuesday's second session, buyers Brandywine Farm and Liberation Farm got two horses for the price of one when they bid $47,000 for Endowment. The bay mare entered the ring with a newborn foal, a chestnut Thunder Gulch filly born at about 11 p.m. Monday night on the sales grounds.

Endowment, a 13-year-old Private Account mare, sold through the Lane's End consignment.

"Her dam was a champion, and Endowment herself was a very good runner," Liberation Farm's Rob Whiteley said. "The fact that she is able to produce a filly made her all the more appealing."