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OBS sale preview: Winter mixed sale bolstered by horses of racing age
By Joe Nevills
Hot off an uptick in the market at the Keeneland January horses of all ages sale, the North American sales calendar moves south to the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. winter mixed sale in Florida. The two-day sale features a catalog of 641 horses, beginning Tuesday, Jan. 15 with consignor preferred horses and horses of racing age, followed by an open session on Wednesday. Selling begins each day at 10:30 a.m. Eastern.
Last year’s OBS January sale posted strong across-the board gains, with 319 horses selling for a total of $3,616,500, up 52 percent in receipts from 2011. The average sale price of $11,337 was a 47 percent increase from the previous year, while the median price of $6,000 was a 33 percent improvement.
Those figures were helped significantly by the addition of a horses of racing age portion in the sale’s opening session, which added 74 offerings to the catalog. In its second year as part of the winter mixed sale, that portion of the catalog has more than doubled to 186 horses of racing age.
“It was well received last year,” OBS President Tom Ventura said about the horses of all ages section. “We have a few more horses in it than last year, so we think that’s something that can grow for us.”
Horses of racing age that are cataloged in the winter sale had the option of breezing over the Ocala Training Center’s SAFETRACK surface prior to the sale during the under-tack show on Monday. Consignors were given the option of posting timed workout or simply galloping horses for potential buyers. Of the 102 horses that appeared on the track for the under-tack show, 34 were galloped.
“With the under-tack show, it helps horses that haven’t run in a while, and show how they move and show how far along they are in training,” Ventura said.
The fastest breeze time for a half-mile was turned in by Bingo, a stakes-winning 5-year-old Bernstein mare who covered the distance in :45.20. Ontario-bred Bingo is out of Prospector’s Pick mare Isabeau, who has produced seven starters and four winners, including stakes winner Beau Brass. Bingo has won two of 15 starts, including the 2011 Ontario Damsel Stakes, and earned $219,364. She is consigned by Moonshadow Farm, agent.
At Large, a 3-year-old Orientate colt, turned in the fastest time for three furlongs, :32.80. The unraced colt is out of winning Silver Deputy mare Catch Me Deputy, who is the dam of five foals, one starter, and one winner. Thoroughbred Friends & Associates, agent, consigns the colt, who is from the family of Grade 1 winner Family Enterprize and Grade 2 winner Silver Bird.