Newsells Park raises its game ahead of next stage of Premier Sale evolution
The operation will offer a high-quality draft of yearlings in Doncaster
Change is afoot in Doncaster. The Goffs UK Premier Yearling Sale used to be where buyers who only had eyes for sharp, precocious two-year-old types went but when this year's sale kicks off on Tuesday, a much broader appetite will be catered for.
A glance through the sale's recent roll of honour points to a classier, more progressive type of horse being offered in South Yorkshire. Think Laurens, Barney Roy and Harry Angel. And among the vendors who have curated their 2018 draft accordingly is Newsells Park Stud, who will send nine yearlings to next week's auction.
"It's certainly the strongest draft we've ever sent up to Doncaster," said the stud's general manager Julian Dollar. "The standard at Doncaster has risen so we thought we better pull our finger out and take a better horse.
"Our draft has a real spectrum of yearlings that will hopefully suit all tastes and all budgets. There's a few that I think will be really sharp two-year-old types and there are a couple that'll probably be better at three.
"They're all really nice types physically so I'm hopeful people will agree with me."
It is a real sign of the times for the Premier Sale that Newsells are sending lot 20, a Gleneagles colt out of Lady Eclair, to Doncaster.
The youngster boasts a page rich in black type, being out of a Listed-winning Danehill Dancer mare and a half-brother to the Listed scorer Al Malhouf. And with his physique more than match for his pedigree, this is the kind of colt that could have walked into any sale of Newsells' choosing.
"He's as nice as I've got this year," said Dollar. "He's a beautifully balanced horse and very attractive. He's got a good shoulder, a lovely quarter, a nice top line and seems to have a very relaxed, easy going temperament.
"He just flows when he walks and as an individual I think he's one of the top five nicest horses we've ever had on the farm."
When you consider that Newsells have previously raised or offered the likes of Legatissimo, Lightning Spear, Secret Gesture, Waldgeist and Without Parole that is high praise indeed.
Another first-crop sire represented in the draft is the exciting Muhaarar, with the stud set to offer lot 21, a colt out of Lady Francesca, a Listed-placed Montjeu half-sister to dual Group 3 winner Purr Along.
"He's lovely and he's a big, strong horse," said Dollar. "It could be that he'll turn into a nice three-year-old as well but the dam is a half-sister to Purr Along, who was an exceptionally good two-year-old.
"From what I gather Muhaarar has some lovely horses out there and his foals sold very well. He's athletic, correct and from a good family."
While the profile of the Premier Sale may be changing, prospective buyers can still expect to find their share of precocious types, including within the Newsells Park draft. Step forward lot 303, a Kodiac filly out of the Listed-placed Shamardal mare Wittgenstein.
"If this filly isn't a two-year-old I'll eat my hat," said Dollar. "She's an absolute tank. The one thing I'm learning about Kodiacs is they're absolutely peas out of the same pod.
"They all have good minds, they're good-looking horses, and I can see why they make such good two-year-olds - and of course he gets horses that progress as well.
"We've got several Kodiacs on the farm and they're all identical."
Newsells will also offer colts by Oasis Dream (500) and Showcasing (104), the sires responsible for this year's juvenile Group 1 winners Pretty Pollyanna and Advertise - himself a graduate of the Premier Sale.
"Inevitably there are horses every year that when they come out of the stable you kind of want to hide," said Dollar.
"But in the case of this draft I'd happily take every one of them home and be really excited about racing them - and that's the best compliment I can give them."
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