03/11/2014 10:00PM

OBS March: Figures climb to record heights

Photos by Z
A Tapit colt and full brother to Zazu and Flashback brought $1.6 million Tuesday at the OBS March select sale, the co-highest price of the auction.

Condensing the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. March selected sale of 2-year-olds in training to a single day on Tuesday did not have any ill effect on its outcome, as the auction set record returns in gross, average, and median prices.

OBS reported 198 juveniles sold during the one-day auction, which was shortened from two days after storms delayed the pre-sale under-tack show. Those horses brought revenues of $37,817,500, a 31 percent increase compared with last year’s gross of $28,794,000 from 185 sold. Tuesday’s total blew past the previous record of $33,380,000 set in 2008.

The average sale price of $190,997 was a 23 percent improvement over last year’s record figure of $155,643, while the median of $137,500 was also the highest in the sale’s history, 10 percent better than the previous high point of $125,000 set last year. The buyback rate rose from 22 percent to 24 percent.

A pair of colts topped the sale, each dropping the hammer for $1.6 million.

Stonestreet Stables was the winning bidder on a Giant’s Causeway colt out of the Grade 2-placed stakes-winning Unbridled’s Song mare Rebridled Dreams. Bred in Kentucky by Coffee Pot Stable, the colt is a half-sibling to four winners, including Grade 1 winner J. B.’s Thunder and Group 3-placed stakes winner Doncaster Rover. The transaction made the colt his dam’s first seven-figure foal.

The sale was a successful pinhook for Ocala, Fla.-based Northwest Stud, which purchased the colt for $550,000 at the 2013 Keeneland September yearling sale. He breezed one furlong in 10.20 seconds over the Ocala Training Center’s synthetic Safetrack surface during the under-tack show.

Also selling for $1.6 million was a Tapit colt out of the winning Mr. Greeley mare Rhumb Line, making him a full sibling to Grade 1 winner Zazu and Grade 2 winner Flashback. Qatar-based Al Shaqab Racing bought the colt, who was bred in Kentucky by SF Bloodstock.

Rhumb Line is the dam of four winners from five foals to race, also including Group 2-placed Art Princess and stakes winner Corinthian’s Jewel. Mandy Pope’s Whisper Hill Farm purchased the mare, in foal to Tapit once again, for $2 million at last year’s Fasig-Tipton Kentucky fall selected mixed sale.

Consigned as agent by Eddie Woods, the colt breezed an eighth of a mile in 10.40 seconds during the under-tack show. He is the second-highest-priced horse to sell at auction out of the dam, following Zazu, who brought $2.1 million at the 2012 Keeneland November breeding stock sale.

A third juvenile sold for seven figures on Tuesday, as Coolmore representative Demi O’Byrne went to $1.3 million to secure a Malibu Moon-Layreebelle colt from the consignment of Bobby Dodd, agent. The colt is a half-brother to a pair of recent standouts, Grade 2 winner Spellbound and stakes winner Kid Cruz.

Spendthrift Farms’s Malibu Moon was also the sire of the sale’s top-priced filly, as trainer Mark Casse, as agent, went to $700,000 to secure Make the Sun Shine, a chestnut out of the Grade 3-winning Giant’s Causeway mare Sunshine for Life. Niall Brennan, agent, consigned the filly, who is from the family of French 1000 Guineas winner Pearl Bracelet.

Woods finished as the sale’s leading consignor by gross, with 18 horses sold for a combined $5,235,000.

Sheikh Joaan Al Thani’s Al Shaqab Racing was the sale’s leading buyer, with two purchases totaling $2,050,000. His other purchase was an Unbridled’s Song filly out of the unraced Forest Wildcat mare Be My Prospect and from the family of Eight Belles, secured for $450,000.

For hip-by-hip results, click here.

Ocala Breeders' Sales Co. March selected sale of 2-year-olds in training, final summary:

Year Sold Gross Average Median Buyback
2014 198 (+7%) $37,817,500 (+31%) $190,997 (+23%) $137,500 (+10%) 24%
2013 185 $28,794,000 $155,643 $125,000 22%


Matt Zebriski More than 1 year ago
Every sign indicates the business is in decline - field sizes stagnant, PEDs pervasive, handle stagnant, casinos squeezing horsemen for VLT share, attendance down, training costs rising, super trainers making game less competitive - and yet, equine flesh is becoming more expensive and people are spending money mindlessly. This sale recorded averages that were significantly higher than 2008 (remember the asset bubble in the US). Great job to OBS...most horses sold for 50-100 pct premiums, and consignors are flush again. Let's add up the value of these horses and weigh them against purses + training costs in 3 years...Negative ROIs will be staggering.
James Mcrae More than 1 year ago
every time the lottery gets over 7 mill i dream about buying a couple it really is a rich mans game oh well im still gonna dream i bought three out of this sale a curlin a tale of the cat and a stormy atlantic see you in the winners circle kenney