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Ferguson swoops
for Saoirse Abu

2008 312 241 168 70 11,469,500 68,271 16,750
2007 339 284 199 70 24,722,000 124,231 35,000

SAOIRSE Abu's superb racing career reached its conclusion in Newmarket last night at the opening breeding stock session of the Tattersalls December Sale when she was sold for 1.95 million gns to join Sheikh Mohammed's broodmare band.

The Mr. Greeley filly, a $260,000 yearling, won last season's Moyglare Stud Stakes and Phoenix Stakes before finishing third behind Natagora in the 1,000 Guineas this year.

Ballylinch Stud manager John O'Connor and agent James Wigan both made a bold attempt for the filly - who raced for a partnership of Ennistown Studand trainer Jim Bolger - but agent Peter Doyle was the underbidder to John Ferguson, representing Sheikh Mohammed.

"She won't run again and we look forward to seeing her foals. We'd seen her at the races and she was a beautiful filly and to win both the Phoenix and Moyglare you have to be an exceptional two-year-old," said Ferguson.

"Sheikh Mohammed has been lucky with Balanchine and West Wind from this family and although we don't normally plan before buying a mare, the cross of a mare by Gone West [Mr. Greeley's sire] and Montjeu produced Motivator so she could easily go to Montjeu's best son Authorized."

Ennistown Stud's Ruairi O'Coileain said: "Maybe in 10 years' time I'll have a couple of Saoirse Abus out in the field but for me she was too valuable to hold on to. I'm in the business of buying yearlings and will maybe invest in some after this."

Unsung Heroine heads to Australia
Tommy Stack's St. Leger runner-up Unsung Heroine later sold for 950,000gns to agent Hubie de Burgh as a 2009 Melbourne Cup prospect.

"She's for an established client and will probably join David Hayes and will hopefully be the new Makybe Diva," said de Burgh after outbidding Michel Zerolo of Oceanic Bloodstock.

"She had all the attributes to suit Australia, she's a lovely rangy filly without many miles on the clock, she stays and looks like she will improve physically."

Shadwell strikes for Arch Swing
Last season's 1,000 Guineas second Arch Swing will join Hamdan Al Maktoum's broodmare band after his racing manager Angus Gold outbid agent Hugo Merry to get the Arch filly - who had originally been bought for $55,000 by Mags O'Toole as a foal - for 600,000gns.

"She was only just beaten in a Classic and was avery attractive mare, Northern Dancer is also far enough back in her pedigree to give plenty of choice about who she could go to," said Gold. "I don't know if she'll stay here or go to America - Sheikh Hamdan will decide."

Our Queen Of Kings heads notable day for Marston
The early star was 11-year-old Our Queen Of Kings, dam of Spinning Queen - who sold in 2006 for 3 million gns after winning the  Sun Chariot Stakes. Agent John Warren, standing with Newsells Park Stud's manager Julian Dollar, got the half-sister to Hollywood Derby winner Labeeb with one bid of 500,000gns.

"She will hopefully continue to build for the future of Newsells Park Stud and she has the top-class bloodlines to help achieve that. The aim is to make the stud one of the leading nurseries in the country," said Warren.

Our Queen Of Kings, who had been owned by a partnership of Marston Stud and Fleming Thoroughbreds, was sold with a Pivotal cover.

Richard and Joanna Wellesley's Marston Stud also part-owned Miss Hawai, the dam of this year's Blandford Stakes runner-up Beach Bunny, who was sold early into the day from David Hardisty's Oaklands Farm Stud. William Huntingdon, who previously part-owned the eight-year-old, bought out his partners with a 270,000gns bid.

But it was not one-way traffic for Marston Stud, the Oxfordshire nursery also bought the Deauville Listed winner Speciale, one of Dylan Thomas's first book of mares, for 260,000gns through BBA Ireland supremo Adrian Nicoll.

"The mares were partnership horses, so Marston Stud have done a bit of trading today. She was the one mare I was keen to get before flying over to the sale because I'd seen the lovely Motivator yearling [who made 100,000gns in October and has joined Richard Hannon] and the Encosta De Lago foal is exceptional," said Nicoll.

"When thefirst two foals are like that you're already winning half the battle and she's got a very good cover as well."

Speciale - who was offered through Goldford Stud - had been bought for 260,000gns at Tattersalls two years ago by Seamus Burns' Lodge Park Stud.

Burns - who bred Galileo's best son New Approach - later paid 450,000gns for Grecian Dancer, who carried Vincent O'Brien's colours to victory in this season's Ridgewood Pearl Stakes and is in foal to the champion sire.

"I loved her as a yearling when John Ellis sold her, then saw her at the Curragh and saw her today. Galileo's the boy now and whether she has a colt or a filly doesn't matter."

Niarchos draft popular
Niarchos family home-bred Beyond The Dream, a grandaughter of Miesque and daughter of dual Classic winner East Of The Moon, changed hands for 400,000gns when offered in foal to Danehill Dancer. Will Edmeades, buying for Chris Budgett's Kirtlington Stud, bought the six-year-old.

Breeding Capital secures Noelani
Noelani, a dual Group 3 winner for Lady Clague, was another of the 120 mares covered by Danehill Dancer this year and the sister to Namid will form part of the second Breeding Capital partnership managed by a group including Simon Marsh. Charlie Gordon-Watson paid 420,000gns for the Indian Ridge mare.

"She's a Group 3-winning full-sister to a champion and in foal to a very good horse and she's also be Indian Ridge, whose a very good broodmare sire," said Marsh.

"The first Breeding Capital partnership finishes in2010 and the new one will end in 2012. We raised the money for the new partnership from January to March and were oversubscribed. But we haven't really spent until now, we bought a sister to Casual Look called Dress Uniform for $550,000 at Keeneland lastmonth and now this mare.

"There's no doubt that things are going to be difficult in the next few years but in any rising or falling market there are opportunities and I hope we can invest sensibly and we'll see where we stand when the fund finishes in four years."

The sale continues today at 9.30am.




Galileo £11,526,615
Dark Angel £3,698,431
Dubawi £3,194,696
Frankel £2,697,844
Kodiac £2,224,685
Acclamation £2,088,768
Iffraaj £2,067,853
Sea The Stars £1,923,301
Nathaniel £1,880,694
Invincible Spirit £1,699,882