02/05/2016 2:44PM

Fasig-Tipton Kentucky winter mixed sale wraps season

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A memorable breeding stock auction season highlighted by a pair of sales adjacent to the Breeders’ Cup comes to a close on Monday and Tuesday with its final major stop, the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky winter mixed sale.

The two-day auction will take place Feb. 8-9 at the Fasig-Tipton’s Newtown Paddocks in Lexington, Ky., with each session beginning at 11 a.m. Eastern. Click here to watch both days of the sale live.

The mixed market has by and large remained steady through the 2015-16 season, generally keeping a reasonable pace with the previous season’s returns following a run of growth, and Fasig-Tipton president Boyd Browning expects that consistency to carry on through the upcoming sale.

“I think we’ll continue to see a similar marketplace and similar trends to what we’ve seen in the last 24 months – lots of competition for what are perceived to be the quality offerings, whether they’re racing or broodmare prospects, whether they’re broodmares, or whether they’re short yearlings,” Browning said. “I think we’ll find the market difficult for those horses that don’t appeal to a reasonable cross section of the buying pool, whether it’s due to the age of the mare, or lack of success on the racetrack or in their pedigree, or conformational issues.”

A total of 528 horses have been cataloged for this year’s renewal, down 14 percent from the 2015 edition when 616 horses were entered. The catalog is mare-heavy, with the 367 broodmares, broodmare prospects, and racing/broodmare prospects accounting for 70 percent of the catalog, down slightly from the previous sale when mares made up 73 percent of the horses on offer.

Browning said the tipping of the scales toward broodmares can prove advantageous to breeders looking for a last-minute addition to their bands, or the books of their stallions, prior to the opening of the North American breeding season, with most sheds opening just days after the sale.

“I think there are certainly people that have seasons that they don’t have mares committed to yet, or a stallion that they need to add another nice mare or two,” Browning said. “It’s now or never if you need to buy a mare. The timing of it works very well from that perspective, and I think people are ready to go shopping again.”

Newly turned yearlings account for 26 percent of the catalog, with the 136 yearlings keeping steady with the previous sale’s 132 yearlings, which accounted for 21 percent of that sale’s offerings.

“I think it’ll continue to be, as it has been in recent years, really good quality, and a diverse group,” Browning said. “Fillies and mares coming off the racetrack will probably be the strongest component of the sale, but there are some interesting mares that are in foal, and there are some really high-quality short yearlings. It’s impossible to say one segment is going to dominate, because there’s going to be varying levels of quality amongst all segments that are included in this catalog. It’s just the nature of the sale.”

Last year’s Kentucky winter mixed sale posted across-the-board declines, with 406 horses selling over the two sessions for total revenues of $10,560,700, down 22 percent from the 2014 renewal. The average sale price fell 22 percent to $26,012, while the median declined 25 percent to $12,000.

Rose to Gold, a multiple Grade 3-winning broodmare prospect by Friends Lake, topped the sale, going to WinStar Farm for $450,000. She was later bred to Distorted Humor.

Bill and Corinne Heiligbrodt bought the sale’s top-priced yearling, going to $180,000 for an Into Mischief filly out of the stakes-placed Carson City mare Lanai City. The still-unnamed filly is from the family of Breeders’ Cup Juvenile winner New Year’s Day, Grade 1 winner Shared Account, and current Kentucky Derby trail contender Mohaymen.