High Chaparral: his Karaka yearlings are averaging NZ$145,985PICTURE: Edward Whitaker
High Chaparral popular in Karaka opener
THE first session of the New Zealand Bloodstock National Yearling Sales at Karaka on Monday was led by a Stravinsky filly bought by David Ellis of Te Akau Stud for NZ$740,000 (£386,444/€460,434) - with the last New Zealand-foaled crop of High Chapparal also in huge demand.
The filly, consigned by Cambridge Stud, where July Cup and Nunthorpe Stakes winner Stravinsky stands, from Cambridge is out of the Magic Of Sydney mare Jesmond's Gift, an unraced half-sister to Canny Lad and Canny Lass.
"She is a beautiful filly with a lovely outlook and a lot of class and we are thrilled to be training her," commented Ellis on his purchase. "You have got to be prepared to pay for the best fillies and we were prepared to do that today.
"She was a bought for a very good client who has had many fillies with Te Akau over the past 20 years.
"Stravinsky is a very good international sire of fillies and we are going to aim her for the New Zealand Bloodstock filly of the year Series, which Te Akau has a great record with having won four of the last six titles."
Ellis was the leading buyer of the day with 14 purchased for NZ$2,402,500 at an average of NZ$171,607 (£89,616/€106,775).
The Stravinsky filly whowas top lot came through the ring four lots from the end of the session and it was a pair of yearlings by High Chaparral - a former shuttler to New Zealand before being diverted to Australia - that had been sharing the limelight, with a colt and filly fetching NZ$650,000 (£339,444/
The Lyndhurst Park-consigned High Chaparral colt out of Creil (Frenchpark) was knocked down to the bid of Hong Kong agent Willie Leung for Hong Kong owner Mr WK Lee.
Leung said: "We thought he was the best High Chaparral in the Sale and we were very keen to get him. Mr Lee wants a tough stayer and has been looking for a long time for a horse like this.
"We paid a premium to get him but in order to get such a quality horse that is sometimes necessary.
"The horse will remain in New Zealand for at least 18 months for training and we will race him here in New Zealand before deciding whether he is good enough to send to Hong Kong."
The High Chaparral filly, out of the five-time winning Danehill mare Diamond Like, was snapped up by Gai Waterhouse and James Harron Bloodstock shortly after the filly was passed through the ring.
She is a half-sister to the NZ$2 million 2010 Karaka sale-topper, and was offered by Sir Patrick Hogan's Cambridge Stud.
High Chaparral is the most represented of any sire at the 2012 Premier Sale, with 35 yearlings entered. So far 25 have sold for an average of $200,800 (£104,862/€142,939).
The first session of the two-day Karaka Premier sale saw 170 lots sold for NZ$24,817,500, at an average of NZ$145,985 (£76,263/€90,833) and clearance rate of 70 per cent.
New Zealand Bloodstock co-managing director Andrew Seabrook anticipated a stronger second session.
"There is no lack of firepower to the buying bench with good horses attracting plenty of competition, but the market is taking a bit of time to settle into a steady pace," he said.
"Many buyers are taking a wait and see approach, and from what I'm told, several leading buyers have their favourite horses in tomorrow. Like Magic Millions, which picked up significantly on the second day, we would expect to see improvement here tomorrow."