LEXINGTON, Ky. - The select yearling auction season opened Tuesday with Fasig-Tipton&rsquo;s July sale in Lexington, where the sale-topper was a $310,000 Harlan&rsquo;s Holiday colt bought by the late Jess Jackson&rsquo;s widow, Barbara Banke, and George Bolton, Stonestreet&rsquo;s former partner in Horse of the Year Curlin. Bolton also races Astrology in partnership with Banke.\r\nFASIG-TIPTON JULY: Updates from throughout the sale &raquo;\r\nThe select yearling portion of the day ended with 191 yearlings sold for $13,349,000. That&rsquo;s down 26 percent from last year&rsquo;s gross for a larger two-day auction that sold 243 yearlings. The 2011 average is $69,890, 8 percent lower than last year&rsquo;s figure of $75,780. But median improved from last year, rising 20 percent from $50,000 last year to $60,000 on Tuesday. Buybacks were 27 percent, down slightly from last year&rsquo;s 29 percent.\r\nIn addition to buying the yearling sale&rsquo;s top-priced horse, Banke also purchased a $220,000 Dehere-Marialua filly, signaling her intent to carry on the Stonestreet Stables racing and breeding operation.\r\n&ldquo;She&rsquo;s going to carry on just like him,&rdquo; said Stonestreet&rsquo;s bloodstock agent, John Moynihan, who outbid Darley Stud agent John Ferguson for the colt. &ldquo;She&rsquo;s really enthusiastic about it and loves it as much as he did. The game plan doesn&rsquo;t change. She&rsquo;s trying to buy horses that are going to win the kind of races you&rsquo;d want to run in. We&rsquo;re looking for good classic horses.&rdquo;\r\nThe bay Harlan&rsquo;s Holiday colt is the first foal out of stakes-placed Acrosstheborder, by Include. Crossroads Sales, agent, was the consignor. Banke&rsquo;s other purchase, the Dehere filly, is out of a Maria&rsquo;s Mon mare and hailed from Dapple Stud&rsquo;s consignment. Twin Hopes Farm and Helen T. Andrews were the sellers.\r\nIt was a banner day for several sires, including Harlan&rsquo;s Holiday and Tapit. Harlan&rsquo;s Holiday, a WinStar Farm stallion, also was the sire of a $225,000 colt out of Shiny Band that EQB, agent, bought from the Gainesway agency. Gainesway, which stands Tapit, also sold a $300,000 daughter of Tapit and Easily bought by Winchell Thoroughbreds. Tapit also was the sire of a $200,000 colt out of Shadow of Storm that Earle Mack purchased from the Eaton Sales agency.\r\nLane&rsquo;s End stallion Lemon Drop Kid also had two yearlings above the $200,000 threshold, and both sold to Gary and Mary West. They were a $230,000 colt out of Wow Me Free consigned by Warrendale Sales, agent, and a $210,000 colt out of Field of Dreams that Dromoland Farm consigned as agent.\r\nAlso bringing more than $200,000 was a Flashy Bull-The Wrong Face colt that the Inside Move pinhooking operation bought from Cardinal Venture.\r\nAs expected, buyers showed they were still in a selective mood, looking not just for athletes, but athletes with some black-type pedigree behind them. Those could be relatively costly.\r\n&ldquo;I was really right at my limit,&rdquo; EQB&rsquo;s Miller said after signing the ticket for the Harlan&rsquo;s Holiday colt. &ldquo;We would rather have gotten him for $150,000, but he was a nice horse, a Louisiana-bred.\r\n&ldquo;There are really just a few we&rsquo;re interested in. It&rsquo;s a very good sale, though, I think, for a pinhooker. I saw a lot of horses that were good individuals and new pedigrees, and there&rsquo;s a lot of opportunity, especially for a guy who&rsquo;s going to resell, to make a pedigree,&rdquo; added Miller, who generally represents end-user racehorse owners, not resellers. &ldquo;But we&rsquo;re looking for horses that would be difficult to buy as a 2-year-old.&rdquo;\r\nPinhookers, too, sometimes felt compelled to step up their spending. Bethe Deal, owner of the Texas-based Inside Move resale operation, said she was putting more eggs in fewer, but better-conformed, baskets this year when buying yearlings. Deal winnowed the catalog&rsquo;s 300 yearlings down to a list of 13. One of those was a Flashy Bull colt out of The Wrong Face, by Marlin, that Deal bought from Cardinal Venture (Keith Lancaster, agent) for $200,000. She hopes to resell him at one of Florida&rsquo;s boutique juvenile sales next spring.\r\n&ldquo;I thought he was a man among boys out here,&rdquo; Deal said of the colt, who is from Flashy Bull&rsquo;s second crop. &ldquo;He&rsquo;s extremely correct and clean. We had a lot we liked that didn&rsquo;t vet. He looks athletic and powerful, and I thought he was an amazing specimen. Some years, when things are better, I think that&rsquo;s a $300,000 colt.\r\n&ldquo;This is a step-up year,&rdquo; she added. &ldquo;The way the market is, you have to have the horses that you know those people have to come look at.&rdquo;\r\nThe session provided some good news for first-crop sires. Once kings of the yearling auction ring, first-crop stallions became much less fashionable after the general economic meltdown took the bloodstock market with it; buyers and breeders fled to proven stallions. Proven sires dominated the highest prices, but early results at the July sale suggested first-crop horses still have a willing audience. Midnight Lute, Tiz Wonderful, Into Mischief, Big Brown, Majestic Warrior, and Street Hero all had six-figure yearlings.\r\nRosilyn Polan&rsquo;s one-horse Sunday Morning Thoroughbreds consignment scored a home run with one of those first-crop yearlings. That was a bay filly by first-crop sire Tiz Wonderful, who stood for a $12,500 advertised fee in 2009, when this filly was conceived. On Tuesday, the filly brought $130,000 from Bob Feld, bidding on behalf of Kevin Plank&rsquo;s Sagamore Farm. Polan&rsquo;s filly is out of the Slew o&rsquo; Gold mare No More Ironing, making him a half-brother to Kentucky Oaks third Sneaky Quiet, now the dam of Grade 3-placed Hidden Truth.\r\nAlthough Polan is a breeder, this filly, technically was a pinhook.\r\n&ldquo;The thing I love most about this filly, to be honest, is Tiz Wonderful,&rdquo; Polan explained. &ldquo;I just love that horse. He&rsquo;s one of those look-at-me kind of horses. He&rsquo;s just a horse that fills you up when he comes out of his stall. I bred to him and didn&rsquo;t get a live foal, so I put an ad out saying I wanted a Tiz Wonderful foal.&rdquo;\r\nEnter Chip Muth, who privately sold the then three-month-old filly to Polan. Her dam No more Ironing came along, too, until the Tiz Wonderful filly was weaned.\r\n&ldquo;This filly has always had a great walk, and she carries herself well. She showed every day with no Chifney,&rdquo; Polan added, referring to the bit that most sale yearlings have attached to their halters to allow their handlers more control, particularly against rearing. &ldquo;To me, she has a lot of class. People loved her, and that&rsquo;s actually even better than the $130,000 - the validation that people loving what I thought so much of.&rdquo;\r\nBethe Deal, the Texas pinhooker, knows what Polan means and hopes her yearlings feel some of that love at next year&rsquo;s juvenile auctions. Talking about the market she expects at the 2-year-old sales, Deal could well have been describing today&rsquo;s yearling auctions, too.\r\n&ldquo;It&rsquo;s the very top of the buyers that have the money right now to spend, so you&rsquo;ve got to have something they really want,&rdquo; deal said. &ldquo;You can&rsquo;t just have a good individual like you could a couple of years ago.&rdquo;\r\nPhase I of Bill and Corinne Heiligbrodt&rsquo;s dispersal immediately followed the yearling sale and featured horses of all ages. The dispersal&rsquo;s top price was the $240,000 that agent Ciaran Dunne, usually seen buying yearlings and reselling them as juveniles, paid for the broodmare Richbabe. The 15-year-old Richman mare is the dam of Grade 3 winner Richwoman and is carrying a Bluegrass Cat foal. She sold with her April Street Sense colt by her side.\r\nStallion Bwana Charlie. originally cataloged as the dispersal&rsquo;s last lot, was withdrawn from the sale.\r\nThe dispersal&rsquo;s other six-figure horses were Driscoll, who brought $105,000 from James L. Stone; $100,000 Spoils, who sold to Fleetwood Bloodstock; and $100,000 Sax Appeal, who went to Jonathan Thorne.\r\nThe dispersal session sold 73 horses for $2,949,500, for a $40,404 average and a $29,000 median.