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Radcliffe and Scat Daddy keep a share of centre stage after hectic week

A 13th seven-figure yearling compares with nine last year

This Scat Daddy filly was the 13th yearling to change hands for seven figures this week
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The usual suspects were to the fore as a fiercely competitive market produced two more seven-figure yearlings on the closing day of Book 2 at the Keeneland September Sale. Kerri Radcliffe paid $1 million for a filly by the inevitable Scat Daddy, while the only sire to set a higher average through the opening phase of the marathon sale, Tapit, accounted for the other filly to share top billing on Thursday.

Prospectors have a chance to regroup during Friday's "dark day" before entering the middle reaches of the 4,000-lot saga in Book 3. For now, while year-on-year comparisons remain difficult, because of the sale's new format, there is no mistaking the significance of 13 yearlings at $1 million or more, compared with nine through the whole sale last year.

Thursday's session saw 198 yearlings change hands for a total of $47,231,000, an average of $238,540 and a median of $175,000. Through the first four days, 681 horses have been sold for $196,645,000, at an average of $288,759 and median of $200,000.

Tapit has had a remarkable week and this filly was another of his progeny to hit seven figures
In the new format, a single, select Book 1 session was followed by a three-day Book 2, in contrast with the three-day Book 1 staged last year. The idea was to create early momentum that would carry through the entire auction, and to put as many top-quality horses before the world's major buyers as possible during the first week.

"The goals we set out before the sale have been accomplished,"
said Keeneland director of sales Geoffrey Russell. "We wanted to
engage buyers early, and Monday showed that with great highlights.
The table has been very well set for the rest of the sale based on
this week.

Hunger

"We have sold million-dollar horses throughout the week, which
shows the strength of the market. There is a hunger for top-end
horses."

Thursday's two session-toppers sold within minutes of each other.
The first, consigned by Brereton Jones/Airdrie Stud, was Hip 1038, a filly out of Jones's 2012 Kentucky Oaks winner Believe You Can, by Proud Citizen. Don Alberto was the winning bidder.

"First of all, she's a Tapit," said Liliana Solari of Don Alberto. "We
had Proud Citizen at our farm in Chile. He was a wonderful horse
and sired very good fillies and colts. [This filly] had very nice
lines: not too big, not too strong, but nice lines. So we want to have
good horses [from] her."

"All the smart people have told us that the filly looks exactly like
all the really good Tapits," said Bret Jones of Airdrie. "She is not
a great big, robust filly, but well put together, and gives you the feeling she is going to give everything she has on the racetrack."

Bret Jones of Airdrie: filly 'is going to give everything she has'
Radcliffe's latest investment from the last crop of Scat Daddy, meanwhile, was Hip 1041, consigned by Gainesway, agent, out of the Graded stakes-placed Ghostzapper mare Beloveda, a half-sister to Grade 3 winner Golden Mystery.

Queen

"This was my favourite horse in the whole sale," said Radcliffe, continuing her spree on behalf of Phoenix Thoroughbreds. "I saw her on Sunday and I knew I wasn't going home without her. In my eyes she is the best horse in the sale. She is a queen and hopefully
she will be in the Queen Mary Stakes next year!"

"[The filly] rose to the occasion here," said Gainesway's director of sales, Michael Hernon. "She was shown over 220 times. She was just as strong at the end. And she came along really well, I'd say in
the last six weeks. She attracted all the top buyers, as she deserved to do. We think she's a Royal Ascot filly. There was a lot of across-the-board interest from major buyers and you know the cream rises to the top. We think she's a really good horse, and we're delighted with the result."

Michael Hernon of Gainesway: 'filly was shown 220 times'
Radcliffe additionally bought a colt by Verrazano for $650,000.

Tapit also accounted for the top colt of the session, Eric Fein paying $900,000 for a half-brother to Grade 1 winner Taris. Out of the Theatrical mare Comedy, he was consigned by Denali Stud, agent for Stonestreet Bred & Raised.

"We priced him anywhere from $500,000 to $1 million," said Ian Brennan, who signed the ticket. "Good Tapit colts are bringing that kind of money. I've seen him for the last six, seven months and I've
loved him. He's done everything right."

Gorgeous

John Oxley paid $800,000 for a daughter of Pioneerof The Nile from the consignment of Blandford Stud, agent. The filly is out of the winning Touch Gold mare All Mettle, a half-sister to multiple
Grade 1 winner Paulassilverlining.

"She is gorgeous and I love Pioneerof the Nile," Oxley said. "She had the same look as American Pharoah. She was too attractive to pass up, so I had to stay in there and win. That was a little more than I thought she would go for – and quite a bit more than I hoped she would go for."

Oxley: bought a 'gorgeous' filly by Pioneerof The Nile
Robert and Lawana Low paid $750,000 for a Distorted Humor half-sister to recent Grade 1 Del Mar Debutante Stakes winner Moonshine Memories from the family of Favorite Trick. She was consigned by Lane's End, agent.

Recipe

"I said to Mr Low: 'It's the perfect recipe for a filly to bring a lot of money,'" said Jacob West, who signed the ticket for the filly. "She's an outstanding physical [and has an] incredible pedigree behind her. So it was a recipe for success. She'll go to Todd Pletcher."

West summed up the market as "incredibly strong," adding: "You have a number in your head and you better be prepared to give 25 per cent, sometimes 50 per cent more. It's good for the breeders. It's hard to get through all the hoops and get them in here, so when you do that, you need to get rewarded."

Rick Porter's Fox Hill Farm was the leading buyer of the fourth session, spending $1,675,000 for seven yearlings. Leading consignor was Taylor Made Sales Agency, which sold 33 horses for $6,617,000.


For more news on US racing, sales and bloodstock news visit bloodhorse.com

 

You have a number in your head and you better be prepared to give 25 per cent, sometimes 50 per cent more

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