Bargains to be found at third session of Breeding-Stock Sale
Azamour mare Zaidiyna came out on top at €82,000
While many sat in unmoving traffic attempting to escape from France, pinhookers, breeders, and the National Hunt crowd braved the driving rain to seek out bargains on the third day of the Arqana Breeding-Stock Sale, perhaps spurred on by the knowledge that it was during this session last year that Con Marnane bought the headline-grabbing Different League as a foal for just €8,000.
She became the flagship filly for her sire Dabirsim, and a filly foal by the popular sire sold for €46,000 on Monday. Sold by Haras de Grandcamp, where her sire officiates for a fee of €30,000, the filly was bought by Armenic Bloodstock, which is managed by Meryl de Watrigant, wife to agent Nicolas. She is out of an unraced half-sister to the sire Panis.
Three mares in foal to Dabirsim were among the top ten lots, with Golden Rock, a Fastnet Rock half-sister to Group 1 placed-Believe Me selling to Larissa Kneip of Haras de Saint Arnoult for €37,000. She was also sold by Eric Lhermite's Haras de Grandcamp.
Con Marnane had struck earlier at €32,000 for Mupsellia, also carrying to what must be his new favourite stallion. This Tertullian mare has a Rajsaman foal coming behind, and is a half-sister to the dam of stakes mare Royal Rascal.
National Hunt breeders to the fore
From the Aga Khan draft, Zaidiyna, a sister to Grade 1 hurdle winners Zaidpour and Zaynar, drew the attention of the National Hunt breeders. The Cypres family, breeders of Sprinter Sacre, were underbidders, with Benoit Gabeur having the final say at €82,000 for the top lot of the day and Herve Bunel of FIPS Agency signing the docket.
Gabeur is a renowned French National Hunt breeder and has bred champions such as So French, Long Run, and Master Minded.
"She will be bred to a National Hunt stallion," said Gabeur. "She is a lovely mare, out of a Classic winner, and it's a fantastic page. I do not know what I will do with the Olympic Glory."
The mare has already produced a bumper winner in Ireland, Zaheer, and is carrying to the Al Shaqab first-season sire Olympic Glory. She is from the Aga Khan family of champion Zarkava.
Again from the Aga Khan consignment, Sajida sold for €30,000 and will stay in training next year. This three-year-old, who was in training with Alain de Royer-Dupre in Chantilly, is a great-granddaughter of the champion mare Saganeca, dam of the sire Sagamix among others.
Wootton Bassett brings novelty value
A winning Danehill Dancer filly in foal on her maiden cover to Wootton Basset sold for €46,000, consigned by Haras des Marais.
"She's going to Ireland on behalf on an Irish client," said Matt Houldsworth who made the winning bid. "We thought that she was a lovely looking mare, and Danehill Dancer is a good broodmare sire."
"We really like Danehill Dancer as a broodmare sire, and Giant's Causeway is a great influence too," added Houldsworth. "The Wootton Bassett foal should have a bit of novelty value selling in Ireland."
The second foal out of the Listed placed Olvia, Sapore Di Roma's fourth dam is a sister to the legendary Mill Reef.
A significant reduction in quality on the third day of selling was reflected in the prices, however the clearance rate held up at a steady 71 per cent, with figures showing an improvement on last year's session. The total turnover rose by nine per cent to just under €1.9 million, while the average rose by just over eight per cent.