08/15/2008 12:00AM

Young sires galore represented at OBS

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The Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company’s selected sale of yearlings gets under way Monday morning. It will be followed by three days of open sessions. Starting time for all four days is 10:30 a.m. There are 230 yearlings cataloged for the OBS selected session, and 1,112 cataloged for the open session.

Last year’s selected yearling sale had an average price of $57,962, off 2.2 percent from ’06. The median price of $50,000, however, represented an 11.1 percent gain. Top price for a colt was $210,000 for a Cape Canaveral yearling sold by Janie Roper, agent, and bought by Ken McPeek, agent. Top price for a filly was $185,000. MSTS (Murray Smith) bought the daughter of Harlan’s Holiday, who was consigned by Summerfield, agent.

There are 11 young stallions with first crops at the races this year who have three or more yearlings in the auction. Nine of these stallions have already made their marks as sires. The Vinery’s Peace Rules leads the group with 22 runners (through Thursday) from his initial crop. The Florida-bred son of Jules has chalked up 11 winners, including a stakes winner. There are six get of Peace Rules in the selected session and 15 yearlings by him in the three-day open sessions. The Vinery also stands Alke, a son of Grand Slam. Alke has 14 runners and four winners. There are 18 by Alke in the open sessions.

Hartley/De Renzo is the home of a full brother to Giant’s Causeway. Roar of the Tiger is his name and he has 66 registered 2-year-olds of which 21 have started and nine have won. There’s no shortage of his get in this sale as five are in the selected session and 31 more in the open session. Omega Code stands at Hartley/De Renzo, as does City Place. City Place, by Storm Cat, with four winners, has two consigned to the selected session and 10 to the open sessions, while Omega Code, by Elusive Quality, is the sire of nine in the selected session and 25 more in the open sessions. Omega Code recently had his seventh winner.

Spanish Steps, an unraced full brother to the champion and leading sire Unbridled’s Song, has two winners from 14 starters, both at Del Mar. There are nine of his get in the selected session and 15 more in the open session.

First-crop sires with at least one winner and who have at least three in the sale include Lambholm South’s Safe in the USA, and Bridlewood Farm’s Black Mambo, who has 15 cataloged and is the sire of two winners from nine starters.

Adena Springs selling 36

Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs has abandoned its annual sale of 2-year-olds in training, which was conducted in mid-winter by the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company but held on the grounds of Ocala’s Adena Springs South. Instead it will sell 36 homebred yearlings in Ocala and more elsewhere.

The principal reason behind this change is that Stronarch felt that he could not muster the necessary bidding at the 2-year-olds in training sales for horses who were galloped rather than breezed under tack. There is a wide assortment of stallions behind this consignment, including a Canadian-bred yearling filly from the first crop of the Epsom Derby winner North Light. There is also a Canadian-bred colt by this sire in the consignment.

An education in selling horses

The University of Florida Equine Sciences Program has an annex in Ocala. Students seeking a University of Florida Animal Sciences degree work with Thoroughbreds at the U of F facility under the direction of farm manger Chris Cooper. “Students further their education and knowledge by learning the latest in science and techniques related to nutrition and reproduction,” said Cooper.

A part of the reproductive program deals with Thoroughbreds, which are bred out of donated breeding stock, and the produce is raised until they are yearlings ready to go to market. Their market venue is the OBS yearling sales and this year the university will send 17 yearlings to the open portion of the yearling sale.

“We sell without reserve,” said Cooper. “There are several yearlings that have black type in the first dam. We have not had any big stakes winners lately, but we have sold several in recent sales who developed into allowance-winning money-makers.”