Inglis reported marginal downturns at the Melbourne Premier yearling sale this week in sharp contrast to buoyant results at the Gold Coast Magic Millions and Inglis Classic Sale.
Book 1 saw turnover dip 7% to $49.93 million while the average was 1% worse at $118,833. The clearance rate dropped 5 points to 83% but the median remained solid at $100,000.
The absence of HKJC, South Africa’s Markus Jooste and Aquanita Racing all contributed to the declines following record-breaking figures in 2017. “I think we have to bear in mind the growth can’t go on forever,” Inglis managing director Mark Webster said. “A lot of vendors came here anticipating some huge growth.
“The Victorian trainer participation has dropped significantly - there has to be questions asked about the local buying bench. The Top 10 Victorian buyers spent $10.20 million in 2017 and it was $5 million this year."
Blue Sky Bloodstock led 13 members of Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) on the buyer list at Oaklands with a $400,000 I Am Invincible half-brother to Alinghi.
The Yarraman Park colt was purchased on behalf of owner Mark Sowerby and will be trained by Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott. “He’s from a great farm, a great family and is going to great stable,” Blue Sky Bloodstock manager Tom Seymour said. “We are pretty happy with that price for a horse of that quality.”
Belmont Bloodstock also paid $400,000 for a Sepoy - Beauty World filly from Blue Gum Farm. She is a half-sister to four stakes winners and was bought on behalf of Milburn Creek owner John Muir.
Agent Damon Gabbedy weighed in with another $220,000 for a Not a Single Doubt - Irish Love filly from Two Bays Farm. She will race for Champion Thoroughbreds who own her older half-brother Atone - a Mornington maiden in November.
Bluegrass Bloodstock’s Lenny Russo combined with Manny Gelagotis for a $300,000 Snitzel half-brother to Eurozone. “I thought he was a $500,000 plus colt who vetted up really well,” Gelagotis claimed. “He’s by a champion stallion and has a sensational pedigree.”
Among Russo’s other buys were a So You Think colt ($100k) and Stratum filly ($95k) for Cranbourne trainer Shea Eden.
Boomer Bloodstock spent $400,000 on 7 yearlings – 4 of them were for Perth trainer Lindsey Smith topped by the $90,000 Al Maher colt from Rushton Park. He’s a half-brother to Casino Prince winners in Australia, Hong Kong and Macau.
Peter Ford teamed up with Robbie Griffiths and Chris Bromley to buy 3 yearlings for $350,000. The Pierro – Classic Music filly was the most expensive at $160,000 – she’s a half-sister to Classic Diva (High Chaparral), a Caulfield winner for Griffiths in January.
Randwick Bloodstock Agency outlaid $270,000 for the So You Think – Dezign filly to be trained by Matthew Smith. She’s a half-sister to stakes-performed stayer The Chairman who holds a Group 1 nomination for the Sydney Cup next month.
RBA spent another $170,000 for a couple of good-looking colts by Danerich and Domesday on account of trainer Henry Dwyer. The Danerich is a half-brother to Oakbank stakes winner Scratchy Lass and Seven Year Reward who is ready to resume after winning a Cranbourne trial on Monday.
Sheamus Mills Bloodstock bought two fillies by Brazen Beau topped by the Blue Gum entrant from Flemington stakes-performer Viking Turf Belle for $210,000. She’s a half-sister to Tony McEvoy’s promising 3yo Vinland.
“Everyone is happy with what they have bought afterwards but it’s not often I get them from my A+ list,” Mills said. “She’s a beast!”
SMB was fully engaged as bloodstock advisor to Yu Long Investments principal Zhang Yuesheng. They parted with $1.56 million during Book 1 headed by a $260,000 Hinchinbrook filly from French winner Famous Lilly (Rahy).
Top buys for other FBAA members included Mark Pilkington (Dundeel colt - $180k), Laurel Oak Bloodstock (Deep Field colt - $82k), JJ Gordon Bloodstock (Reset colt - $75k), Bill Mitchell (Toronado filly - $45k), Pinhook Bloodstock (Unencumbered colt - $32k), Astute Bloodstock (Written Tycoon filly - $150k).
Federation of Bloodstock Agents Australia (FBAA) was formed in 1988 to maintain, improve and develop the standards, status and services of bloodstock agents throughout Australia. Its members operate with the utmost integrity and professionalism and are bound by the strict Industry Code of Conduct.