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Alpine Rose tops Aga Khan draft at Arqana

Arqana december sale: day two comparative figures
2008 249 248 172 70 6,520,500 37,910 20,000
2007 259 228 174 76 4,919,000 28,270 12,000

THE Aga Khan Studs were once again to the fore during the secondsession of the Arqana December Sale, accounting for seven of the top ten lots headed by the Group 3-placed Alpine Rose, who was knocked down to Patricia Boutin's Suprina for €550,000.

Troy Steve made a determined bid to secure the Linamix sister to Grand Prix de Saint-Cloud winner Fragrant Mix, but he was unable to match the final bid from Boutin, who was buying on behalf of a partnership which included herself and Lady O'Reilly.

"She was my favouriteindividual in the sale," said Boutin. "She has been bought to breed from - I think Linamix is a very good broodmare sire - but I'm not sure yet which stallion she'll go to."

Boutin had earlier paid €260,000 forMayfair Stud's Vadazing, a half-sister to Prix Saint-Alary heroine Vadawina in foal to Dansili. The daughter of Spinning World was sold by the Aga Khan at this sale for €360,000 in 2006.

"I tried to buy this mare two years ago but was unsuccessful," said Boutin. "I've followed her since then and now I've finally got her. She will definitely stay in France.

"I know the family well because my father used to train for Jean-Luc Largardere. I don't mind Spinning World as a sire and obviously the Dansili covering didn't dampen my enthusiasm for her."

As on Saturday, Sunday's sesson returned decreases across the board with 174 horses selling for a total of €4,919,000, down 25 per cent. The average dropped by 25 per cent to €28,270 while the median fell by 40 per cent €12,000. On a more positive note, the clearance rate rose by seven per cent to 76 per cent, although one of the session's most anticipated lots, Aquarelle Bleue - a Sadler's Wells daughter of triple Group 1 winner Aquarelliste - failed to change hands at €500,000.

Putsch adds Celebre Vadala to broodmare band


Andreas Putsch with his new purchase, Celebre Vadala


Another highlight of the Aga Khan's draft was Vadazing's close relation Celebre Vadala, a Listed-winning half-sister to Queen Anne Stakes winner Valixir, who was sold to Andreas Putsch for €525,000.

"I came here just to buy this one mare," said Putsch, who is compiling a formidable broodmare band at his Haras de Saint Pair in Normandy.

"It is very difficult to buy into these families and she had a good race record. Plus she's in foal to Selkirk, whom I like."

Half-sister to Darjina sells for €500,000
Dariena, a winning three-year-old half-sister to Darjina, was initially led out unsold at €475,000 after Georges Rimaud of the Aga Khan Studs signed for the daughter of Highest Honor.However, since Marc de Chamburehad made another bid as the hammer came down, the bidding was re-opened and de Chambure's bid of €500,000 under the name of Riviera Equine was accepted.

"My final bid was refused by the auctioneer so I went to Georges Rimaud and he agreed re-open the bidding and take a bid of €500,000," said de Chambure. "She won't race again but I have no idea which stallion she will visit or whether she will remain in France."

Half-sister to Shamdala to race on in US
The Aga Khan's Shadiyna, a half-sister to Gran Premio di Milano heroine Shamdala from the family of Shergar, also proved to be popular, selling to Nicolas Clement for €280,000.

The daughter of Dubai Destination won at Saint-Cloud and Maisons-Laffitte this season for Alain de Royer-Dupre and will now continue her racing career in the US with Clement's brother, Christophe.

"She has been bought for an owner-breeder in the US and will join Christophe to race on the East Coast," said Clement. "She's from a family which we love. Hopefully, she will be good enough to gain some black-type out there."

The Aga Khan Studs was also responisble for Bayria, a winning daughter of Kalanisi in foal to Bachelor Duke who sold to Abeth Mussat for €85,000, and the Listed-placed Bruxcalina, for whom Crispin de Moubray paid €75,000 on behalf of an English client. The daughter of Linamix was sold in foal to Sinndar.

Visions On Space heads to Italy
Italian buyers set the early pace with Azienda Agricola Loreto Luciani going to €87,000 to secure Visions On Space, a Lure half-sister to Group 1 winners Dolphin Street, Insight and Saffron Walden. The ten-year-old mare, who is in foal to Rock Of Gibraltar, also counts this season's leading miler Henrythenavigator among her close relations.

"She's for Stefano Luciani and will head back to Italy," said the winning bidder Eleonor Scudu. "I thought she was a beautiful mare who's in foal to a good stallion."

The sale continues on Monday at 11am local time.




King's Theatre £1,143,037
Presenting £1,059,143
Beneficial £986,639
Oscar £896,303
Milan £863,940
Westerner £839,346
Flemensfirth £755,621
Kayf Tara £657,982
Midnight Legend £595,809
Stowaway £503,470