01/12/2012 1:30PM

Magic Millions: $988,000 colt tops Australian sale session

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LEXINGTON, Ky. – A colt by two-time Australian champion Fastnet Rock added momentum Thursday to Australia’s Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale, bringing the day’s highest price of about $988,800.

Coolmore Stud’s agent Demi O’Byrne and Australian bloodstock agent James Bester bought the colt, whose price in Australian dollars was $960,000. The colt is the first foal out of two-time winner Rose of Cimmaron, by Bite the Bullet.

The Fastnet Rock colt helped boost average and median price, although gross dipped on a smaller catalog. Through its second session, the auction had sold 262 yearlings, down from 275 last season, for about $34,536,415. Gross was down 4 percent from its 2011 level. But the average price of approximately $131,818 eked out a gain over last year’s figure by less than 1 percent. Median rose more impressively, by 11 percent, to close at about $103,000.

Buybacks decreased, from 23 percent last year to 19 percent.

Thursday’s session-topping price easily bested the second highest-priced offering and most expensive filly. That was a daughter of More Than Ready and Australian Group 3 winner Sugar Babe (Exceed and Excel) who fetched about $618,000. Trainer Gai Waterhouse and James Harron Bloodstock signed for the filly.

The Magic Millions Gold Coast yearling sale was to continue through Jan. 15.