Buyers will be attending in force this coming Tuesday as the first yearling sale of the 2018 auction season will be held on the Fasig-Tipton company grounds. Cataloged for the seasonal debut are the first foals of Triple Crown hero American Pharoah, and other exciting new sires like Palace, Bayern, Palace Malice, and Tapiture; all of whom represented the best of their generation in their respective categories.
While there will be the inevitable “outs”, there are well over 300 yearlings to see this year and many are coming with very nice female families below their sires’ famous names.
The yearlings will be going through the ring on Tuesday, starting at 10am but the sale itself will kick off at 4pm on Monday as horses of racing age (with a few regional stallion prospects as well) will take to the auction ring first. While it might shy away a new buyer from investing in a horse that someone else has already started, it would be remiss to not mention that the good filly Dream Tree came from this sale in 2016, and she was considered one of the frontrunners in her division before she got turned out over an injury.
This is also a chance for a starting farm to get their hands on a stallion prospect for a regional market, as there are quite a few hardy, intact males going through as well that were campaigned by some of the most well-known names in racing and a few that hail from the families of current sires like Declaration of War and Flatter.
We’ll go by days, so we start with Monday and the horses of racing age. My short list includes:
- HIP 443: Fire Away –> This son of War Front out of the mare Salute is a half to a new sire, Mr. Speaker and comes with Personal Ensign as his second dam. That family is also represented with a few others in this sale, but through her daughter My Flag and granddaughter Storm Flag Flying. With $613, 397 in the bank, this stallion would be an excellent addition for a start-up farm looking to cater to the blue-collar breeders who might not be able to afford the fee for War Front ($250,000 LFSN) or want an alternative to Pulpit that would not be provided by Mr. Speaker ($10,000 LFSN).
- HIP 428: C U At Eau Claire –> Her family is full of producers through all three dams and the family consistently throws good runners as well. She ran predominantly in Canada but her family has a history of success in the states with strong runs in American classics like the Frizette and Spinaway Stakes.
- HIP 532: Team Colors –> Street Cry (Ire) is close in this old fashioned pedigree and with the dam being by A.P. Indy, you get a lot of those legendary genetics up close in this 6YO horse. He ran in France and in America, which bolstered his marketing potential as he can provide dirt and turf genetics that clearly work in his favor. The female family is top to bottom black type, so racing is in his genetics as well.
On Tuesday, the yearlings will get their turn to dazzle potential buyers as they are led into the ring; many of whom will be the first glimpse of what their sires can impart into their offspring. This is only a small section of my short-list (and an even smaller section of the sale) but these are the three that I look forward to seeing the most since they’re by first crop sires.
- HIP 131: Dark Bay/Brown Filly by American Pharoah –> One of only two being offered in the sale by the Triple Crown hero, this filly hails from the Mind Your Biscuits family through the second dam, and is out of a Yonaguska mare. It’s not the most traditional family, but she’s a February foal, so she’s had ample time to grow and is well into her yearling stage. While a couple is too small of a sampling to get an idea of quality, it can be used to start to form a picture.
- HIP 19: Bay Colt by Fast Anna –> Out of a young Pleasantly Perfect mare and by a son of Medaglia d’Oro, this colt has a rather interesting pedigree. His second dam produced Yahilwa, who is by Medaglia d’Oro directly; she went on to win $583,495 and black type both here and abroad. The dams in this family tend to produce runners rather than actually being runners themselves, and his dam was no different: she only won $17,690 in purses. However, Pleasant Wind is young with a family that has proven to be receptive to the Medaglia genes, and Fast Anna is out of a champion mare himself.
- HIP 285: Bay Colt by Daredevil –> Having an Irish bred and raced dam will likely take a scrape off of his final purchase price, but it should still be fair since the mare is the granddam of Collected (of Arrogate defeating fame). The colt’s half brother in Japan named Deep Sound (by Deep Impact) surpassed the half million mark in earnings and the family continues to be very active in the country. If he doesn’t get purchased by American connections, Japan seems like a very reasonable choice as well, given their success with offspring out of the mare.
Again, these are just six horses out of nearly five hundred that are cataloged to sell, so don’t take this as the only representation of the sale. If you’re in the Lexington area, get out to the grounds and see them yourself! The sale isn’t on the scale of the September or the Saratoga Select, but it’s a good starting point for the year, especially as the rest of the yearlings mature and start their training for the big name auctions.
It must be mentioned, as Payntermaniac is still listed in the online catalog as for sale during the Horses of Racing Age part of this auction. She will no longer be offered, as she broke down June 30th and was euthanized after being vanned off during the Debutante at Churchill Downs. Rest in Peace.