01/20/2006 12:00AM

Strong gains at Ocala mixed sale


LEXINGTON, Ky. - The Ocala Breeders' Sales Company's winter mixed sale ended Friday with a gain in total gross for the four-day sale. The auction in Ocala, Fla., sold a total of 744 horses for gross receipts of $10,557,900, up from last year's cumulative gross of $8,929,600 for 684 horses. The average of $14,191 was almost 9 percent higher than last year's average of $13,055.

The sale-topper was the $265,000 broodmare Lunar Star, a full sister to Grade 1 winner Lunar Spook. A 9-year-old Silver Ghost mare, Lunar Star was cataloged carrying a foal by the popular young sire Songandaprayer. Matthews Stables bought her from the consignment of Michael Yates's Shadybrook Farm. Lunar Star is a stakes-placed daughter of the Idle Minds mare Rafael Luna.

Friday's open session sold 211 horses for $1,123,500, resulting in an average price of $5,325. The total was down sharply from last year, when there were two open sessions instead of one. Last year's open sessions sold 311 horses for $1,764,800 for an average price only slightly higher than that seen Friday, at $5,675.

The session-topper was an $85,000 yearling filly by Posse out of Eltisha that Barry Berkelhammer purchased from the Summerfield agency. The filly is the first foal out of Eltisha, a stakes-placed Eltish mare, and is from the family of such stakes winners as Judger, Red Lightning, and My Miss Brooks.

Millennium Farms to expand facilities

Millennium Farms owner Ro Parra has plans to expand his Kentucky operation. Parra said Thursday that the operation, which is located just north of Lexington on Paris Pike, is increasing the number of stalls in its stallion barn from five to 12 and also is building a new breeding shed. Parra said the farm will also get a new office.

Millennium recently sent Millennium Wind, winner of the 2001 Blue Grass Stakes and a half-brother to champion Charismatic, to Highcliff Farm in New York for the 2006 breeding season. His stall in Kentucky didn't stay empty. The Millennium Farms roster is full, with Scrimshaw, Even the Score, Sultry Song, Talk Is Money, and Woke Up Dreamin, who is standing his first season at stud this year for a $7,500 fee.

Millennium also stands several other horses at other farms. Easyfromthegitgo stands at 519 Thoroughbreds in Louisiana; Hollycombe, Holzmeister, and Littleexpectations are at Q6 in Texas; and Service Stripe stands at Crestwood Farm.

"We're full right now," Parra said of the Millennium Farm stallion barn. "We already have about 100 stalls for mares and foals, so we have plenty of capacity for them."

But additional on-site stallion capacity makes sense, Parra said, especially with what he called "some pretty good horses at the track."

Still at the track in Millennium's racing string are millionaire Super Frolic, fourth in the Breeders' Cup Classic last year; Grade 2 winner Santana Strings; and Grade 3 winner Thunder Touch.

Though it is a relatively new endeavor, Millennium Farms has quietly been making strides. Last year, Parra said, its racing stable earned about $2.5 million in purses. That's not bad for an owner who claimed his first horse and bought his first farm in 1999. Since jumping into the Thoroughbred game, Parra has become determined to stay for the long haul with a diverse program that includes stallions, racehorses, and commercial breeding.

"We also have 40 2-year-olds now, and a number of those are Millennium Winds," Parra said. "I'm hoping at least one of those becomes our big horse. Our goal is to have a long-term, growing, and profitable operation. Every year we sell about 20 or 30 mares in foal and about half of our crop. We're trying to methodically build a business that has staying power."

Lynch starts up consulting company

Fasig-Tipton executive Dennis Lynch has started a new consulting venture. Called Horse Power, the company offers consulting on everything from picking a yearling to mating a mare to designing racing silks, with charges based on an hourly fee. Lynch, who still serves as Fasig-Tipton's director of market development, founded Horse Power with his longtime friends, businessmen Glenn and Lee Weber. Lynch will specialize in horse selection, evaluation, and purchasing.

Horse Power announced this week that its staff of advisers will include former jockey Donna Barton Brothers, who will aid in trainer selection and racing management; pedigree analyst John Prather, specializing in pedigree and mating work; attorney Laura D'Angelo, who will focus on issues related to forming racing stables; accountant Bud Watson, who will focus on helping clients devise business plans and aid in tax issues; and design teacher Sebastian Kaupert, specializing in silks design and production.