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Brandywine Farm buys Royal Irish Lass for $210K
By Joe Nevills
The Keeneland November breeding stock sale generated one more round of fireworks before the end of Friday's 11th and final session when broodmare Royal Irish Lass sold to Brandywine Farm for $210,000.
Royal Irish Lass was one of several horses in the Keeneland November sale purchased by Brandywine Farm who were consigned and co-owned by Jim and Pam Robinson's Paris, Ky., farm and subsequently bought outright in the public market from Rob Whiteley's Liberation Farm.
A 9-year-old Saint Ballado mare who was sold in foal to Cape Blanco, Royal Irish Lass is the dam of two winners from as many to start, including stakes winner Tara From the Cape. She is out of the Grade 2-winning Seattle Song mare Irish Linnet, who is the dam of six winners from eight to start, highlighted by Grade 2-placed stakes winner Irish Art and stakes winner Blushing Irish.
"She's a big, strong mare," said Pam Robinson. "We originally acquired her because my husband loves Saint Ballado mares, so we kept trying to find one and somehow landed on her."
Royal Irish Lass was the first horse to bring a six-figure price at the Keeneland November sale since the eighth session on Tuesday, when 2-year-old maiden winner Flashy Gray sold for $775,000.
"We knew she was going to bring a good price," Robinson said. "I thought she'd bring $150,000 or possibly more. On her looks alone, she carried that extra little bit of money."
This was the fourth time that Royal Irish Lass has gone through the ring at a public auction. As a yearling, she finished below her reserve at the 2004 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga selected yearling sale with a final bid of $300,000. She then sold for $92,000 at the 2007 Keeneland January mixed sale, and for $20,000 at the 2010 Keeneland November sale in foal to Leroidesanimaux.
All four of Royal Irish Lass' foals have sold at public auction, highlighted by the aforementioned Leroidesanimaux filly that dropped the hammer for $150,000 at this year's Keeneland September yearling sale.
"For us, she's a long-term investment," Robinson said. "Hopefully she gives us many good racehorses."