08/13/2010 12:46PM

Private sale tops at Deauville sale

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At a session marked by steep drops in all financial categories, the day’s most expensive horse at Arqana’s Deauville yearling sale in Deauville, France, was not one who sold in the auction ring.

A Galileo filly, a half-sister to 2002 Flower Bowl Invitational runner-up Turtle Bow and a full sister to Group 1 performer Age of Aquarius, failed to reach her reserve on a final bid of 650,000 euros, or $832,000. But British bloodstock agent Charles Gordon-Watson later purchased her privately for about $768,000 on behalf of an undisclosed new client.

Compared year-to-year in the auction currency of euros, gross was down 40 percent from last season, when Arqana sold 83 yearlings from a larger catalog of 105 horses, as compared with 85 cataloged this year. The average price was down 25 percent, and the median fell 17 percent.

The privately sold bay filly, a daughter of the Top Ville mare Clara Bowand a half-sister to French Group 1 winner Turtle Bow, was the day’s most expensive purchase on sale grounds. Haras d’Etreham consigned the filly; she was bred at Haras du Berlais.

But it was an Oasis Dream colt that got top honors under the hammer. Coolmore agent Demi O’Byrne paid the equivalent of $640,000 for the bay son of the stakes-winning Indian Ridge mare Cap Coz. The Castlebridge-consigned colt is a three-quarter-brother to the group-placed stakes-winner Biniou and to Group 3-placed Indian Days.

Friday’s first session at the four-day yearling auction sold 64 yearlings, including two privately, for about $14,739,200, resulting in average and median prices of approximately $230,300 and $192,000, respectively.