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New format for Keeneland September

KEENELAND has announced that their September Yearling Sale will be staged under a new format this year.

The marathon sale will open on Sunday, September 12 with a more streamlined book of 200 selected yearlings, which will be sold during two evening sessions.

They will followed by a second book of approximately 1,300 yearlings which will sell at a rate of roughly 325 horses per day from Tuesday to Friday. The yearlings will be catalogued alphabetically throughout the book.

A dark day will be held a day later than usual on Saturday after which the sale will resume.

"The new format reflects the changing Thoroughbred industry," said Keeneland President and CEO Nick Nicholson. "We've been working in collaboration with our customers, particularly our consignors, over the last few years to develop a format that fits the current dynamics and needs of our buyers and sellers."

Geoffrey Russell, director of sales at Keeneland, said that the new format would "help create more stability and continuity for the marketplace as economic conditions begin to slowly rebound both domestically and internationally."

Although 1,139 individual buyers from 50 different countries bought at last year's sale, the 2009 renewal was severely affected by the economic downturn.

The aggregate plummeted 41.5 per cent to $191,859,200 while the average fell 33 per cent to $60,734. The median of $22,000 was down 40.5 per cent during what Russell described as a "challenging sale".

Nicholson added: "We must re-commit to - and re-double our efforts toward - creating a deeper buying bench both domestically and internationally for horse sales, as well as a new, expanded generation of owners who will participate in this industry and enjoy this compelling sport."





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