08/15/2013 4:15PM

Hot sires: First-crop studs in demand at Fasig-Tipton Saratoga

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Courtesy Claiborne FarmBlame

The recent Fasig-Tipton Saratoga select yearling and New York-bred preferred yearling sales both enjoyed robust trade and concluded with outstanding key measures, including double-digit spikes in average and median prices and substantially lower buyback rates. Following a solid beginning to the yearling auction season at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July, the Saratoga sales reaffirmed a level of market stability that has not been seen since the prerecession years of 2006 and 2007.

Each year introduces a fresh group of first-crop yearling sires, and at this early stage, foals from three newcomers have been well received at the Fasig-Tipton auctions. Claiborne Farm stallion Blame was one of the stars of the Saratoga select yearling sale, with six yearlings selling for a total of $1,360,000 – eighth-best among all sires – for an average of $226,667.

In the New York-bred sale, all six of the available yearlings by Sequel Stallions New York’s Desert Party sold, bringing a total of $667,000, for an average of $111,167. And five of seven offered by WinStar’s Super Saver sold for a total of $550,000 and an average of $110,000.

Blame had one yearling cataloged at the Fasig-Tipton July sale, a filly named Seeking Paradise out of the winner Eden’s Storm and from Theatrical’s and Paradise Creek’s family, who sold for $77,000 to Wesley Melcher. His yearlings were in high demand at the boutique Saratoga select sale, which should be no surprise since he is one of the best-pedigreed and most accomplished racehorses of the first-crop sires.

This was evident last year, when his weanlings averaged $128,718 at sales. A multiple Grade 1 winner on dirt – most notably defeating Zenyatta in the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Classic – Blame’s bloodlines suggest he could be a versatile sire. Several of his sire and fellow Claiborne resident Arch’s best runners have come on grass, and Blame is closely related to leading sire Nureyev and globe-trotting multimillionaire turfer Archipenko on his dam’s side.

Blame’s top Saratoga select yearling, a colt out of the stakes-placed King of Kings mare Kivi, sold out of the Lane’s End consignment for $335,000 to agent Randy Gullatt of Twin Creeks Racing. He is a half-brother to Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint winner Regally Ready and comes from the family of three top-flight French runners – the classic-placed Vilikaia, Group 1 winner Maximova, and Group 2 winner Navratilovna.

Yearlings by Desert Party and Super Saver were popular at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky’s July auction. Desert Party’s filly out of Lil Cozette topped the sale at $460,000, and five of his nine offered sold for a total of $626,000, an average of $125,200. Super Saver had three yearlings sell for $535,000, an average of $178,333. Neither stallion was represented by yearlings at the Saratoga select sale, but they both picked up the momentum in the New York-bred auction.

The most expensive of Desert Party’s progeny sold at the New York-bred sale went for $200,000 to agent Mike Mareina for Kuehne Racing. Consigned by Indian Creek, as agent, the bay colt is out of the Salt Lake mare Salt Water Reign, who won six races and earned more than $220,000. Four of the six yearlings by Desert Party sold at the New York-bred sale went for six figures.

After being purchased as a juvenile for $2.1 million by Sheikh Mohammed al-Maktoum’s agent, John Ferguson, at the Fasig-Tipton Florida sale, Desert Party took the Grade 2 Sanford Stakes and captured three more stakes at 3 and 4, two of them Group 3 races in Dubai. He began his stud career at Darley’s Jonabell Farm in Lexington, Ky., before relocating to Becky Thomas’s Sequel Stallions in New York for 2013, when he stood for $7,500.

Super Saver, the 2010 Kentucky Derby winner who stands for as stud fee of $20,000, had three of his five yearlings sell at Fasig-Tipton New York for six figures, and another sold for $95,000. His top seller, a filly out of the multiple stakes-winning Two Punch mare Reata’s Quik Punch, was bought by Clark Brewster for $230,000 from Select Sales, agent.

Super Saver is from a very good female family with a lot of connections to New York’s contemporary breeding industry as well to the Empire State’s racing past. His dam, the A.P. Indy mare Supercharger, produced Grade 3 winner Brethren, stakes-placed Lisa T., and stakes producer Quickest. Second dam Get Lucky was a Grade 3 winner at Aqueduct and a full sister to champion and 1990 Travers winner Rhythm.

Three of her four stakes-winning foals are full siblings to Supercharger, including Vosburgh and Jerome winner Girolamo, who stands at Sequel in New York. Another full sibling to Supercharger, the unraced mare She’s a Winner, is the dam of Grade 1 winner and 2006 Derby runner-up Bluegrass Cat, who stands at Vinery at Sugar Maple in Poughquag, N.Y.

Desert Party has three yearlings cataloged for the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. August select sale, which  will be held Tuesday, as does Super Saver. Super Saver also has a yearling cataloged for OBS’s open sale on Wednesday and Thursday.

All three first-crop sires are well-represented in the important Keeneland September sale, which runs Sept. 9-21. Blame has 26 yearlings cataloged in Book 1, 12 in Book 2, and three in Book 3. Desert Party has three yearlings in Book 1, one in Book 2, and 17 in Books 3, 4, and 5, while Super Saver has four in Book 1, 17 in Book 2, and a whopping 40 in Books 3, 4, and 5.