11/14/2009 1:00AM

Overbroook mares providing lift


LEXINGTON, Ky. - Strong broodmare prices, especially for mares from Overbrook Farm, and domestic buying were trends Friday at Day 4 of Keeneland's November breeding stock sale on Friday.

Domestic buyers were largely in the background on Keeneland's opening day Tuesday but have since gained ground in the upper market, even as foreign-based purchasers continued to spend. Kevin Plank's Sagamore Farm in Maryland, represented by agent Bob Feld, paid $380,000 Friday for Vienna Affair, who sold in foal to Sky Mesa. The Royal Oak agency sold Vienna Affair, a 4-year-old Red Ransom mare and half-sister to Group 1 winner Crowded House. She was the session leader as of 4 p.m.

Overbrook Farm's well-bred consignment continued to dominate the sellers' list with its high-priced mares, in particular.

The Overbrook consignment, consigned by Eaton Sales, agent, sold $350,000 broodmare Sanibel Island, in foal to Macho Uno, to Hargus Sexton. Sanibel Island is a daughter of champion Flanders, three-quarter-sister to Surfside, and the dam of Grade 3-placed Island Warrior. Other high-priced Overbrook horses Friday included a pair of $340,000 broodmares, Unbridled Breeze and Unkatzable. Unbridled Breeze, a full sister to champion Banshee Breeze, sold in foal to Corinthian and went to Masatake Iida. The A.P. Indy mare Unkatzable, pregnant to Yes It's True, sold to agent Mark Hubley on behalf of KatieRich Farm in Kentucky.

By the end of the session, much of the news remained good, at least compared to last year, when all major financial indicators plummeted. For the day, 244 horses sold for gross receipts of $20,399,700, an increase of 23 percent over the fourth session last year, when 201 horses sold and 35 percent of the day s offerings did not meet the reserves set by consignors. Average for the day was $83,605, a 1.5 percent increase over the average for the fourth session last year. However, the median price declined 7.7 percent to $60,000, compared to median of $65,000 for the fourth session last year.

Cumulatively, the figures remained depressed. Gross through four days is $118,884,200, a decline of 9.4 percent compared to last year, when gross was $131,281,000 through the first four days of selling. Average is $150,296, a 17.1 percent decline compared to last year, and median is $95,000, a 5.0 percent decline.

On Thursday, Overbrook's rich consignment helped Keeneland's third session achieve its second consecutive increase in gross.

WinStar Farm bought Overbrook's $875,000 broodmare Lasting Appeal to top the session. The 4-year-old A.P. Indy mare sold in foal to Awesome Again. Eaton Sales, agent, also consigned Lasting Appeal.

Thursday's session ended with 252 horses sold for $26,833,000, up 9 percent from last year's aggregate for 224 horses. The session average wilted slightly, falling 3 percent to $106,480, but median dropped harder, by 9 percent, to hit $75,000. The session's buyback rate fell from 28 percent in 2008 to 19 percent.

Cumulatively, the 13-session auction's first three days sold 547 horses for a combined $98,484,500, a fall of 14 percent from last year's gross receipts for 523 horses. The three-day average of $180,045 was down by 18 percent, and the $110,000 median represented a decline of 12 percent. The cumulative buyback rate fell from 33 percent to 21 percent.

Also selling late were the session's two other horses to bring more than $400,000. The first was Hip No. 863, Unkatzable's dam, Katz Me If You Can, an Overbrook Farm graded winner cataloged in foal to Indian Charlie who brought $510,000. Hot on her heels came Hip No. 866, the Nursery Place agency's $420,000 stakes-placed broodmare Keladora, offered in foal to Dixie Union. Whisper Hill purchased 12-year-old Katz Me If You Can, and England-based Blandford Bloodstock bought Keladora, a

6-year-old Crafty Prospector mare.

The sale was to continue through Nov. 22 at Keeneland. Sessions start at 10 a.m. daily.

Breeder Linder dies at 93

Thoroughbred breeder Bertram Linder died in New York on Oct. 7 at age 93, according to the New York Times.

Linder, a fixture at Fasig-Tipton's Saratoga yearling sales, owned Hickory Hill Farm in Dalton, Pa. He celebrated his consignment's 50th year at Saratoga in 2004. Although he maintained a small broodmare band that usually numbered fewer than 10, Linder's mares were associated with some of America's notable modern families. Among the successful horses he bred himself or in partnership were multiple stakes winner Obeah, who went on to produce Go for Wand; Grade 2 winner Dancing Rhythm; Optimistic Gal, a multiple Grade 1 winner; and First Mirage, dam of Missy's Mirage and Classy Mirage, both Grade 1 winners. He also planned the mating of Tamerett and Secretariat that produced Secrettame, and she went on to become the dam of prominent sire Gone West.

Linder was as famous in the bloodstock business as a storyteller and also turned his hand to poetry. He was a veteran of World War II and received the Silver Star, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, and, for his actions on D-Day at Normandy, the French Legion of Honor Medal.

Castleton Lyons, Northview cut fees

Two more stallion operations have released their stud fees for 2010, and both have responded to the lower Thoroughbred economy by making fee cuts.

Castleton Lyons in Kentucky trimmed Bernstein from $27,500 to $25,000, Action This Day from $10,000 to $5,000, and Toccet from $7,500 to $5,000.

Northview Stallion Station, which stands horses in Pennsylvania and Maryland, also has lowered fees for 11 of its stallions; Two Punch remains private, as last year. In Pennsylvania, Congressionalhonor will go from $3,500 to $3,000, Fairbanks from $7,500 to $6,500, Love of Money from $3,000 to $2,500, Medallist from $5,000 to $4,000, and Partner's Hero from $2,500 to $2,000. In Maryland, Not for Love drops from $25,000 to $20,000, Dance With Ravens from $6,000 to $3,000, Deputy Storm from $3,500 to $2,000, and Domestic Dispute, Great Notion, and Lion Hearted from $3,500 to $2,000.