11/07/2007 1:00AM

Keeneland session wraps with $800K topper

EmailLEXINGTON, Ky. - A new player from Europe, a Frenchman named Florent Couturier, added sparkle to the final minutes of the Keeneland November sale on Wednesday night when he bid a session-topping $800,000 for the racing or broodmare prospect Stylish Wildcat. A 4-year-old Forest Wildcat filly, Stylish Wildcat eventually will join Couturier's broodmare band at Haras de Bois Carrouges near Normandy, France. But first she will complete her racing career in the United States, Couturier said.

"I will leave her in training here to try to improve her racing record," he said.

Couturier, a former show-jumping rider who recently sold his computer business, said he has about 10 mares at his farm in France but also keeps a couple at Indian Creek Farm in Paris, Ky. Earlier in the session, he paid $450,000 through agent Pascale Menard to buy Gamely Girl, a Grade 2 winner by Arch who will head directly for his broodmare band.

The Keeneland November mixed auction was to continue through Nov. 19, with sessions beginning daily at 10 a.m. in the Keeneland sale pavilion.