09/17/2002 11:00PM

Keeneland sale rebounds


LEXINGTON, Ky. - , which posted session-to-session gains on Monday and Tuesday, continued Wednesday with a $110,000 Souvenir Copy colt as its early leader at 5 p.m.

Centerville Stable purchased the colt from Craig Bandoroff's Denali Stud, agent. The bay colt is out of the unraced Alydar mare Pristine Princess.

On Tuesday, the auction's eighth day, the session-topper was Hip No. 2762, a $250,000 Comic Strip colt that pinhooker Jimmy Gladwell III bought from Lane's End's consignment. The colt is out of the multiple graded stakes winner Chapel of Dreams, by Northern Dancer.

Tuesday ended with gains over the equivalent session last year, selling 291 yearlings for $7,878,400. The gross was up 13 percent from last year's eighth day, when 267 lots brought a total of $6,990,200. The average rose slightly, by 3 percent, to $27,074. Median was up 11 percent to $20,000.

Despite two consecutive days of increases across the board, the 2002 sale's cumulative numbers remained well below the total figures for last year's auction. Through Tuesday, the eight-day gross was down 18 percent to $196,679,500 for 2,001 yearlings sold. Last year, the first eight days sold 1,877 for $241,117,700. The eight-day average of $98,291 is off by 25 percent, and the median of $50,000 is the same as last year.

The sale continues through Saturday.