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lot158a feb 5 09

Sky Gate: the day's top lot at Tattersalls made 47,000gns

  PICTURE: Edward Whitaker  

Solid clearance rate but average falls by over half

Comparative Figures: tattersalls february sale
2009 222 155 108 70 707,100 6,547 3,500
2008 290 228 151 66 2,312,400 15,314 5,200

A LARGE and cosmopolitan crowd braved the elements to get to Newmarket yesterday for the one-day February Sale at Tattersalls but - faced with a catalogue distinctly short of star quality - they spent only sparingly.

There was at least a solid 70 per cent clearance rate although the 707,100gns turnover was less than a third of its 2008 equivalent, the average fell by 57 per cent to 6,928gns and the median dropped by 33 per cent to 3,500gns.

Sky to fly to Florida

The top price of just 47,000gns, was paid by County Cork agent Hugo Merry for winning three-year-old Sky Gate, who will continue his racing career across the Atlantic. The US-bred Arch colt, a 70,000gns breeze-up purchase at Tattersalls 10 months ago, was trained by Brian Meehan to break his duck at Southwell in December and now heads to the sunshine of Florida. "He's joining trainer Marty Wolfson and should be fine for that sort of money to run in America. Arch can do it on every surface and this colt still looks quite babyish, the sort of horse who should keep improving," said Merry, who was also looking for mares to bolster the fledgling breeding industry in Beirut.

International crowd
There were buyers from countries as diverse as Mongolia, Libya, Russia, Kuwait,Kazakhstan and Saudi Arabia while the dearest broodmare was bought early into the day by a Qatari breeder, Hamed Alattiyah.

Darley's Benoit Jeffroy outbid the likes of Chris Mills and Gill Richardson to get eight-year-old Omission, a mare from Authorized's first book and a daughter of Negligent, for 39,000gns on Alattiyah's behalf.

Sounds of Jupiter makes 36,000gns
Cheshire-based Dr Marwan Koukash, a prolific spender at sales over the last few months, paid 36,000gns through Kate Sigsworth for three-year-old Sounds Of Jupiter, a Galileo colt who won a Kempton maiden last week for trainer Ed Vaughan.

"He's going toDavid Simcock and is a good sort of horse with progressive form and should get a trip. He does hold a Derby entry although would have to improve a lot to justify that but I hope Dr Koukash gets the luck he deserves," said Sigsworth.

Dreams for Spain
One-time leading Yorkshire trainer Les Eyre continues to fare well with a small string in Spain and three-year-old Dream Date, a dual winner for William Haggas last month, is the latest recruit to his Mijas stable after selling for 27,000gns to John Needham of Elmhurst Bloodstock.

"She was a very attractive filly with a good young pedigree and recent winning form. I hope she can win a nice race in Spain," said Needham, who topped the very first Tattersalls February Sale in 2000 when paying 170,000gns for Silver Grey Lady.

Cataloguing improvements: more please!
Cataloguing in Britain has changed remarkably little for decades but one positive innovation taken up by Tattersalls for this sale has been to include the names of selling trainers, rather than just their stables.

It is surely something that will emulated by other sales companies while another advance - already used for several years by Doncaster - that would enhance Tattersalls' cataloguing would be to include some basic form and ratings for horses in training.




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