Coolmore continuing their bold backing of American Pharoah
Half-brother to Caravaggio purchased for $1m at Keeneland
Triple Crown winner American Pharoah’s first offspring continued to set auction rings on fire with his second seven-figure sale recorded on Tuesday at Keeneland while Coolmore, which stood the stallion in Kentucky and Australia last year, energetically supports him in trade.
Resolutely turning aside challengers, Coolmore acquired a striking grey American Pharoah colt who is a half-brother to its exceptional Group 1 sprinter Caravaggio on a bid of $1 million, the highest price for a newly turned yearling at the January mixed sale.
Co-bred by Coolmore’s American director of sales Charlie O’Connor from the stakes-winning Holy Bull mare Mekko Hokte, the colt may race in either Europe or America, with a decision on his future coming later.
“Aidan O’Brien always believed Caravaggio to be the best sprinter he ever trained, so when our team considered this colt the best individual in the sale it was an easy decision for us to make,” said MV Magnier in a statement prepared prior to the purchase and released to media after the hammer fell.
“We’re incredibly lucky to have two great partners in Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith who are fully committed to finding the next Caravaggio. We’ll leave it until later in the year before we discuss where this colt will be trained,” stated Magnier, who was in Australia for the Magic Millions sale.
According to Pat Costello of Paramount Sales, which consigned the colt, he was “so athletic and moves so beautifully” that “every top buyer on the grounds seemed to be on him.”
Underbidder David Ingordo said while congratulating Costello’s partner, Gabriel Duignan, “That was the best colt I saw come through” the January sale. In turn, Duignan praised the American Pharoah foals in general, citing their physiques and sensible temperaments.
“That colt walked up there and never turned a hair - they all seem to be that way and are very athletic,” Duignan said.
Magnier declared when attending Kentucky’s November bloodstock sales, where American Pharoah’s foals debuted in the marketplace, that he believes they are an impressive bunch.
“They’re all great movers with good strength - they seem to be very much like him,” he said after Coolmore sold a then weanling American Pharoah half-sister to Grade 1 winner and sire Bodemeister for $1m to Yoshiyuki Ito’s Grand Farm of Japan at the Fasig-Tipton November sale.
When 2017 had ended, American Pharoah was far ahead of other first-year sires with an average price for ten weanlings sold at auction of $445,500. He stood his first season for an advertised fee of $200,000 that Coolmore made more enticing by offering a special two seasons for the price of one arrangement to approved mares; this year his fee is private.
Coolmore and its associates also were active at the January sale in buying mares for American Pharoah’s court this year. Coolmore Director of Bloodstock Aisling Duignan signed a $425,000 ticket while standing with Timmy Hyde for the stakes-placed and stakes-producing Unbridled’s Song mare Spring Eclipse.
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