05/23/2016 5:57PM

Numbers down at Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale


The Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale of 2-year-olds in training got off to a rocky start in the first of its two sessions on Monday in Timonium, Md., with double-digit declines across the board and a continually selective market for top horses contributing to a higher buyback rate.

Led by a $600,000 Medaglia d'Oro colt, 155 horses sold in the opening session for gross receipts of $10,625,700, according to statistics reported by the sale company shortly after the close of business Monday, before additional private sales were factored in. That total declined 18.5 percent from what was a particularly strong opening session of the 2015 sale, where 127 horses brought $13,047,000.

The average sale price, $68,553, and median, $32,000, were declines of 33.3 percent and 28.9 percent from $102,732 and $45,000 at last year's comparable session.

“We still have another day,” Paget Bennett, Fasig-Tipton’s Midlantic sales director, said. “We have some quality offerings tomorrow, and when it’s all said and done, that’s when we can really talk about it. I think everything held the same as what has been seen at all the other sales. Quality offerings are the ones that do well, but others tend to struggle.”

The buyback rate finished at 32.3 percent, a significant increase from 23 percent in the 2015 opener. A group of 74 horses failed to meet their reserves, led by a trio of colts by leading sire Tapit who attracted high bids of $700,000, $375,000, and $225,000. A total of 70 horses failed to meet their reserves during the two days of the 2015 sale.

Bennett said it was her understanding that there were “a lot” of private sales, as bidders who failed to land horses at their sale-ring reserves negotiated with consignors back at the stable area.

“I think there’s been a lot of buyers going back and speaking with consignors to see if they can come to some sort of deal and get horses,” Bennett said. “Consignors are obviously here to sell their horses. They’ll meet in the middle, hopefully.”

The session-topping Medaglia d'Oro colt sold to Rockbridge Bloodstock and Brett Santangelo from the consignment of agent Cary Frommer. A May foal, the colt made a splash in Maryland after being a $190,000 buyback at last fall’s Keeneland September yearling sale. Last week, he worked a furlong in 10 4/5 seconds during the under-tack preview show, well off the fastest time of 10 seconds flat shared by a half-dozen juveniles.

“He’s put together nicely,” Frommer said. “He was immature as a yearling, and that’s why he didn’t get sold. He had a lot of immaturity. He just looked like two horses glued together. And finally at this sale, it all came together with perfect timing.

“I told everybody that talked to me about him, ‘He won’t be the fastest breeze, that’s not him, but he will have a beautiful breeze,’ ” Frommer added. “He’s got a long, fluid, smooth stride. He’s a May foal, he hasn’t been pressed at all. The owner was nice enough to let me wait until May to sell him instead of trying to push to get a faster return.”

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Out of the stakes-placed Lemon Drop Kid mare Kid Majic, the session-topping colt is a half-brother to stakes winner Miss Mischief. It is the family of Kentucky Oaks winner Proud Spell and Grade 1-winning juvenile J P's Gusto.

“He has a really, really wonderful pedigree, and [breeder Allen Poindexter] breeds good horses,” Frommer said. “I’ve had a couple of his horses; they’re tough and just outstanding horses. He was kind, and all the best horses I’ve been around lately have been very kind horses. I’m not saying they don’t nip or play or something, but they’re smart, intelligent horses, and I think that’s a real important trait with racehorses.”

Two other juveniles also brought prices in excess of half a million: A filly from the first crop of The Factor sold for $510,000 to Stonestreet Stables from the consignment of Eddie Woods, as agent, and a Malibu Moon filly sold for $500,000 to bloodstock agent Steven Young from the de Meric Sales, agent, consignment.

A lower top of the market contributed to the decline in the average price, as the opening session of the 2015 edition was led by a $1.25 million Smart Strike filly, followed by two horses sold in excess of $800,000 each.

The sale wraps up with its second session Tuesday, beginning at 10 a.m. Eastern.

For complete sale results, click here.