It’s not often that events in the sale ring become front-page news, but that was the case last week at a record-breaking Tattersalls October Yearling Sale at Newmarket. Three days of bidding on ‘Book 1’ of the sale, the catalogue that brings together the yearlings with the choicest pedigrees, resulted in 349 horses being sold for a total of more than 100 million guineas. Seventeen individual yearlings changed hands for a million guineas or more. Here are five of the most interesting lots:
Filly by Galileo out of Dank
This filly’s price-tag alone would have been enough to hit the headlines. Sold for 4 million guineas, that made her the most expensive yearling sold so far this year and the second highest-priced yearling filly ever sold. However, as a daughter of Coolmore’s star stallion Galileo, she was all the more newsworthy for being purchased by Godolphin. Until this autumn, the Maktoums had a long-standing policy of not supporting sires owned by their arch rivals, but the purchase of this filly, who has already been named Gloam, was seen as further proof that relations between the two bloodstock superpowers have thawed. She’s the first foal of her dam Dank, a very smart filly trained by Sir Michael Stoute, whose biggest wins came as a four-year-old in America where she won the Beverly D Stakes and the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf.
Colt by Dubawi out of Izzi Top
Dubawi has been Sheikh Mohammed’s top stallion in recent years but Godolphin were outbid on this colt by Roger Varian who had to go to 2.6 million guineas to secure him for Sheikh Mohammed’s cousin Sheikh Mohammed Obaid Al Maktoum, Dubawi’s breeder. This colt is closely related to one of the joint most expensive yearlings at this sale a year ago when another son of Dubawi, out of the Prix de l’Opera winner Zee Zee Top, fetched the same price. Now named Emaraaty, he was an impressive winner at Newbury last month and runs in Saturday’s Dewhurst Stakes. This colt is out of Zee Zee Top’s very smart daughter Izzi Top whose biggest wins included the Pretty Polly Stakes and the Prix Jean Romanet.
Filly by Frankel out of Prowess
Even Frankel had to prove himself first as a sire before buyers were prepared to spend big money on his offspring, but he’s having an excellent year and the undisclosed purchaser of this filly had to go to 2.5 million guineas to see off Japanese interest in her. Her useful dam Prowess won a maiden at York and finished third in the Cheshire Oaks for Barry Hills. Prowess has already bred four winners, notably the 2013 Oaks winner and St Leger runner-up Talent (pictured) – she was by New Approach, like Frankel a son of Galileo. This filly’s great grandam Bireme also won the Oaks, and her new owner will no doubt be hoping she proves good enough to bid to keep up the family’s record at Epsom in 2019.
Filly by Kingman out of Justlookdontouch
By Khalid Abdullah’s top-class miler Kingman, this filly, who fetched 1.7 million guineas (bought by Moyglare Stud), was the most expensive lot of the sale by a sire with his first crop of yearlings. Her dam never ran but she comes from a highly successful Ballymacoll Stud family and this filly formed part of the ongoing dispersal of the famous Irish stud’s bloodstock. Her grandam Hellenic won the Yorkshire Oaks and bred nine winners in all, including Islington who won the same race twice and whose other wins included the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf. Justlookdontouch has already produced Abingdon, who won the third listed race of her career earlier this year, while her two-year-old Aim of Artemis won a maiden at Leicester last month.
Colt by Dubawi out of Attraction
Dubawi was responsible for no fewer than eight of those seven-figure yearlings and this one went to Shadwell for 1.35 million guineas. His dam Attraction was the top two-year-old filly of her year and won five Group 1 contests in all for Mark Johnston and owner the Duke of Roxburghe, notably the 1000 Guineas. Attraction has proven a fine broodmare, too, for her owner, all seven of her runners having won, the latest being her Frankel two-year-old Elarqam, who made it two from two for his dam’s trainer in last month’s Somerville Tattersall Stakes at Newmarket. Shadwell had gone to 1.6 million guineas to secure Elarqam at this sale last year and that colt became Attraction’s second Group 3 winner after smart Irish sprinter Fountain of Youth.