Figures Up After Magics Day Three

GOLD COAST, Australia–I Am Invincible (Aus) (Invincible Spirit {Ire}) has rapidly emerged as an important sire in Australia, and his popularity was apparent during the third session of the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale on Friday, with colts by the Yarraman Park Stud resident fetching two of the top three prices: A$1.9-million and A$1.45-million. They were split by a full-sister to Group 1 winner Sweet Idea (Aus) (Snitzel {Aus}), who was bought by Jon Kelly for A$1.8-million. I Am Invincible now has three seven-figure lots at the sale, and the reigning champion sire Snitzel (Aus) has two. I Am Invincible is the sale’s leading sire with three or more sold, that figure sitting at A$505,165 for 30 sold.

Figures continued to climb throughout the third session, and to this point 599 yearlings have been sold for A$137,592,000, compared to 574 sold for A$119,865,000 at the same stage last year. The average has jumped 10% to A$229,703, while the median is up 13.3% to A$170,000. The clearance rate continued to improve for the third straight day and sits at 87.8%. Friday’s session yielded five seven-figure lots, bringing the total for the sale to eight.

Dreams For Colts’ Syndicate…

James Harron has been busy this week stocking the stable of his colts’ syndicate of stallion prospects, and Segenhoe Stud’s I Am Invincible (Aus) colt out of Electric Dreams (Aus) (Redoute’s Choice {Aus}) (lot 686) is headed to trainers Peter and Paul Snowden to race in the green and yellow silks after Harron prevailed at A$1.9-million. The bay is the fifth foal out of the three-time winner Electric Dream, already the dam of the G3 SAJC Breeders’ S. winner Broadband (Aus) (Sebring {Aus}), and Segenhoe offered him on behalf of breeder Peter Horwitz. Segenhoe manager Peter O’Brien said, “He’s been racing and breeding for 40 years and this is the biggest success he’s had; He’s a good friend of mine. The horse was born at Vinery and Peter asked me to go look at it as a foal. He got great grounding at Vinery before he came to us.”

O’Brien said the colt was “as good a looking horse as you would see,” but that he exceeded expectations in the sales ring.

“You never expect a horse to make that,” he said. “Before we came to the sales we would have been happy with A$600,000, and then he had 29 x-ray hits. Everyone was on him so we thought he’d sell well, but not to that extreme.”

Segenhoe wrapped up a very successful sale on Friday evening, with 19 sold from 19 offered for an average in excess of A$400,000.

“All the credit for that goes to the lads on the farm,” O’Brien said. “I’ve never had so many compliments on how well our horses look and that’s all a credit to the team. Probably the one indicator for me was that at a lot of sales you might have two or three people bidding. Every horse had five or six people bidding and all 19 exceeded our expectations on price, which has never happened to me. It’s a testament to Magic Millions for bringing the people here, and it’s also a great indicator of the strength of the market.”

Harron was involved with the purchase of Pierro (Aus) while working in conjunction with Gai Waterhouse at this sale in 2011, and the agent went to A$1.05-million on Friday for a son of the Coolmore sire, who currently leads Australia’s second-season sire standings by a comfortable margin. Lot 647 is the first living foal out of the winning Dance Card (Aus) (Exceed and Excel {Aus}). It was another good result on the day for Mike and Kate Fleming’s Bhima Thoroughbreds, which also sold the A$875,000 Snitzel–Augusta Proud filly.

Harron’s purchases on Friday also included an A$800,000 son of sire of sires Redoute’s Choice (Aus) (lot 516) early in the session. The bay from Tartan Fields hails from a true racehorse and stallions’ pedigree, being the fourth foal out of Assertin Miss (Aus) (Zabeel {Aus}), a full-sister to the Classic winner and sire Reset (Aus).

“He’s by an incredible stallion, Redoute’s Choice, but first of all he’s an incredibly beautiful colt, a very classy colt,” said Harron. “He comes from a fantastic family and he has an incredible broodmare sire in Zabeel. When you get a pedigree and the sire power of Redoute’s Choice, who has a higher stakes winner percentage strike rate than any other stallion in the whole of Australasia, it ticks all our boxes and we’re very excited to get him.”

Harron described the market this week at Magic Millions, Australasia’s first yearling sale of the season, as “really solid.”

“It’s a reflection of what you feel in racing in Australia. It’s very buoyant, very deep,” he said. “There’s lots of exciting stuff happening and there are a lot of people in racing managing to keep it current and keep prizemoney up, and creating races like The Everest. It’s got a lot of people interested and you can feel it here at the sale.”

Harron agreed the vibrancy of the Australian racing industry has driven up the demand for and price of yearlings.

“One hundred percent,” he said. “It’s a great product, it’s a lot of fun to go racing here. The prizemoney has been discussed a million times but The Everest and days like that–we can feel the knock-off effect with inquiries through the website, through people getting in touch, so hats off to these administrators for getting these things up and going. They’re so aggressive and proactive in promoting racing and you can feel it; you can see it in the ring and you can see it in the prices.”

Two Toppers For Kelly…

Jon Kelly signed on Thursday for the sale’s top-priced colt thus far, and on Friday he added the sale’s most expensive filly, Arrowfield’s full-sister to the G1 Galaxy S. winner Sweet Idea (Aus) (Snitzel {Aus}) (lot 733). Taking a page from the book of his trainer Gai Waterhouse, who also trained Sweet Idea, Kelly opened the bidding at a bold A$1-million, and eventually had the final say at A$1.8-million.

“Best filly in the book!” Kelly said. “I’m glad to have her. We’ll try to figure out the right name to be a winner. She has a terrific residual value as a broodmare. She is potentially a blue hen. That’s as good as you can get.”

Reminded that he now owns the top-priced filly and colt from the sale, Kelly said, “Thank god I can afford it!”

Kelly revealed Arrowfield will stay in for a piece of the filly. “I have a nice partner,” he said. “His name is John Messara and I’m very happy that he’s in with me.”

The filly’s 19-year-old dam Flidais (Aus) (Timber Country) has been a gem for Arrowfield. Sweet Idea was herself a A$240,000 yearling at this sale in 2012, and her Group 2-winning full-brother Showtime (Aus) made A$1.1-million two years ago. The mare has also produced Rush (Aus) (Charge Forward {Aus}), a stakes winner in Singapore.

Flower Gets A Jewel…

Damion Flower is no stranger to going to seven figures for a yearling at Magic Millions, his purchases here in recent years including the A$1.6-million sale-topping Snitzel (Aus) colt, later named Chauffeur (Aus), in 2016, and the owner once again prevailed for a prized colt on Friday when shelling out A$1.45-million for Vinery’s I Am Invincible (Aus) colt out of Classic winner Commanding Jewel (Aus) (lot 624).

Flower is best known for racing Snitzel and can nearly be guaranteed to be on each one of that champion sire’s best progeny at the yearling sales, and he admitted that going that high for a horse by a different sire was a little out of his wheelhouse. He said he came to the sale, however, looking for a yearling by Yarraman Park’s red-hot sire, who was champion first-season sire in 2013/14 and has gone on since, his progeny including last year’s Magic Millions 2YO Classic winner Houtzen (Aus) and three Group 1 winners, including this year’s first-crop yearling sire Brazen Beau (Aus).

“We went down there looking for an I Am Invincible, he’s on everyone’s lips,” said Flower, who is also known for campaigning, in partnership, the first-crop yearling sire Rubick (Aus). “Just the nature of him, and he’s out of a really good Commands mare. He was taken out of the box a fair few times and it was just the way he was, his mannerisms, but he was just a real athletic horse. He’s one of the better I Am Invincibles, we thought, out of an exceptional mare. He was the one for us.”

The colt hails from something of a genetic goldmine, being the first foal out of the G1 Thousand Guineas winner Commanding Jewel. As good as she was, Commanding Jewel’s race record pales in comparison to that of her half-sister Atlantic Jewel (Aus) (Fastnet Rock {Aus}), the champion 3-year-old filly and older mare who also won the Thousand Guineas in addition to four other Group 1s. Atlantic Jewel was a A$320,000 graduate of this sale in 2010 to the bid of Demi O’Byrne, and she was exported to Coolmore in Ireland at the end of her racing career and has been mated to Galileo in her first three years at stud. Commanding Jewel was bought for A$205,000 here in 2011 and produced a More Than Ready filly this year.

Redoute’s Colt To Asian Interests…

Considering Redoute’s Choice’s rapidly growing impact as a sire of sires, it should come as no surprise that his sons from young, black-type mares would be well sought after at Magic Millions. That proved to be the case on Friday when the Arrowfield-consigned colt out of Cat By The Tale (Tale of the Cat) (lot 591) made A$1-million from a syndicate of Hong Kong and Australian owners. Magic Millions’s Asian representative David Chester said, “The reason they bought him and paid that sort of money is because he’s got real sire potential. They think he’s a ready-made 2-year-old and they think he’s a horse that will fit the Magic Millions 2YO Classic next year and then hopefully later on he’ll be a stallion.

The bay is the sixth foal out of Cat By The Tale, whose three winners from three to race include the stakes-placed Rafael’s Cat (Aus) (Redoute’s Choice {Aus}) and Tale of Choice (Aus) (Redoute’s Choice {Aus}). The mare’s 3-year-old filly I Am Queen (Aus) (Animal Kingdom) is a winner since the catalogue was published.

Snitzel Filly To Emirates…

Nasser Lootah’s Emirates Park Stud struck early during Friday’s third session to secure a filly with residual broodmare value when spending A$875,000 on lot 521, Bhima Thoroughbreds’s Snitzel daughter of the Group 3 winner and Magic Millions 2YO Classic winner Augusta Proud (Aus) (More Than Ready). The chestnut is a three-quarter sister to G3 Thoroughbred Breeders S. winner Thyme For Roses (Aus) (Redoute’s Choice {Aus}).

“She’s a lovely filly,” said Emirates Park’s Bryan Carlson. “The guys from Dubai only wanted one filly. We got it down to two in the last few days and she was the one they really wanted. She ticks all the boxes, she’s by the right stallion and has the right pedigree. I think we’ll have a lot of fun with her.”

Mike and Kate Fleming’s Bhima Thoroughbreds sold Thyme For Roses to Gai Waterhouse for A$450,000 at this sale three years ago, and that filly was sold on to Stonestreet for A$800,000 at the Magic Millions National Broodmare Sale last year.