10/20/2002 11:00PM

Tattersalls has record average

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The Tattersalls auction house in England rang up a record sale at its October yearling auction. The five-day auction, which ended Saturday, sold 701 lots for $48,827,741 and set records with an average price of $69,654 and a median of $48,510. The average and median were up 24 percent and 43 percent, respectively, from last year.

The sale-topper was an Indian Ridge colt bought by agent Charlie Gordon-Watson from New England Stud for $610,312 at the first session. The colt is out of a stakes-placed Sadler's Wells mare, Place de l'Opera, and is a full brother to English Group 3 winner High Pitched.

The Tattersalls auction bucked an international trend of declines at the year's major yearling sales. That trend was most dramatic at North America's boutique sales, where 30- to 40-percent drops in gross and equally sharp declines in average were the norm at the Keeneland July and Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sales and in the selected portion of Keeneland September.