Updated on 09/15/2012 8:19PM

Keeneland September: $430,000 Empire Maker colt spurs big gains at fifth session


LEXINGTON, Ky.– Topped by a $430,000 Empire Maker colt, Saturday’s fifth session at the Keeneland September yearling sale posted large across-the-board increases over last year’s Saturday session.

The session sold 296 yearlings for $25,791,000, a 25-percent increase over last year’s total for 280 horses. Average climbed 18 percent, from $73,620 to $87,132, and median improved by 37 percent, from $51,000 a year ago to $70,000. the buyback rate also fell from 24 percent at last year’s Saturday session to 21 percent this season.

(For Keeneland September sales results, click here)

Cumulatively through five days, the average price of $166,818 is running 4 percent ahead of last year’s figure for six days; last year’s Saturday session followed an opening week with two select sessions as compared with just one select session in the 2012 auction’s opening week. The cumulative median this year is $110,000 and is 9 percent ahead of last year’s Saturday session cumulative figure.

Agent Mike Ryan bought the session-topper, an Empire Maker son of stakes-winner Katerbug, by Pulpit. The Lane’s End agency sold the Feb. 13 colt, who is from the family of Clear Mandate.

The highest-priced filly was a $340,000 Tapit filly that agent Ben Glass bought. She is out of the Officer mare Art Princess. Gainesway consigned the Feb. 12 filly, who is bred very similarly to Grade 1 winner Zazu, a Tapit filly who is Art Princess’s half-sister. Art Princess was a Group 2-placed runner.

Saturday’s selling followed a dark day. The sale continues through Friday at the Keeneland sale pavilion in Lexington. Sessions start daily at 10 a.m., and the auction sessions are available online via live streaming at www.keeneland.com.http://<p><a href="http://flex.keeneland.com/summaries/summaries.html"><strong>(For Keeneland September sales results, click here)</strong></a><br />