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Further Increases Conclude Fantastic Karaka 2016
Sunday, Jan 31, 2016  Photo: Today's top price of $80,000 came at Lot 1199. Courtesy of Trish Dunell.

As has been the trend of Karaka 2016, the Festival Sale posted increased figures compared with last year’s Sale, completing a highly successful National Yearling Sales Series.

Following in the footsteps of the Premier and Select Sales, the aggregate, average, median and clearance rate all climbed at the Festival Sale.

188 horses were sold at this year's Festival Sale, just four fewer horses sold than last year despite 31 fewer horses catalogued.

The Sale aggregate was $3,020,200, an increase of 7% on last year’s total of $2,816,650. The average also rose to $16,065 from $14,670 last year, an improvement of 10%.

Today’s median of $12,000 was 20% higher than last year’s figure of $10,000 and equalled the record median set in 2008 and 2012 for the Festival Sale.

The clearance rate was a strong 79%, an increase from last year's rate of 71%

Tremendous growth has underpinned Karaka 2016 highlighted by an all-time record median of $55,000, rising 22% from last year's $45,000 and outperforming the previous record of $52,500 set at the historic 2008 National Yearling Sales Series.

Also increasing substantially was the aggregate that totalled $85,648,400 (27% higher than last year’s $67,388,650), along with the average that reached $88,025 (17% higher than last year’s $75,043) and a robust clearance rate of 80% (compared with 75% last year).

NZB’s Managing Director Andrew Seabrook was delighted with how the six days of selling played out.

“We came into this year’s Sale confident that we would have a good week but we have exceeded our own expectations,” commented Seabrook. “We have grossed nearly $20m more than last year – to increase by that much is an incredible effort.

“It is a credit to the state of New Zealand breeding that these results have been achieved. There is a resurgent strength in our stallion ranks and we are seeing more breeders invest in quality broodmares which is just as important. This is a step in the right direction and hopefully it will spur on more people to produce quality horses to meet the needs and wants of buyers.

“A big thank you has to go out to everyone involved this week, internationals and locals. It is a credit to our vendors to have a week as successful as this one was, and we wish buyers all the best with their Karaka purchases.”

Today’s top price came at Lot 1199, purchased for $80,000 by Shane Crawford of Regal Farm. Offered by Lime Country Thoroughbreds, the colt by leading first season sire Jimmy Choux is out of Stratum mare Asian Wind. Successful Ready to Run Sale vendors, Regal Farm are likely to bring the colt back to Karaka in November for the two-year-old Sale.

“We’ve enjoyed some good success at the Ready to Run Sale previously and this guy looks an ideal type for that sale,” commented Crawford. “He is a beautiful moving horse who is well balanced and has a good head, neck and shoulder to him. He is also nicely mannered and looks an early season type.”

The second highest price of the Sale was $70,000, outlaid by Ruakaka trainer Donna Logan for Lot 1205, a filly by Tavistock out of Bantry Bay. Logan has an affinity with the progeny of Tavistock, training Group 1 winner Volkstok’n’barrell and boom galloper Hassselhoof, both by the Cambridge Stud sire.

The leading buyer of the Festival Sale was Stephen McKee, purchasing five horses for $174,500. This year’s Karaka Million winning trainer’s most expensive purchase was $55,000 for Lot 1287, a colt by Dalghar out of Golden Eve (Pins).

For a record 11th consecutive year David Ellis of Te Akau Racing was the leading buyer at the National Yearling Sales Series. Purchasing horses at the Premier and Select Sales, Ellis bought 20 horses for receipts of $5,067,500. His most expensive purchase was $775,000 for Lot 200 in the Premier Sale, a colt by Savabeel out of Bling (O’Reilly).

Purchasing the most horses over the six days of selling was Team Rogerson who bought a total of 22 horses for $2,339,500, with their highest priced buy coming at Lot 404 in the Premier Sale, going to $360,000 to purchase a colt by Savabeel out of Miracle Miss (O’Reilly).

Also in the top five leading buyers were internationals China Horse Club, purchasing eight horses for $1,970,000, and Australia’s leading trainer Chris Waller, also purchasing eight horses for $1,735,000. Rounding out the top five buyers was Paul Moroney with $1,680,000 spent on 19 horses.

The million dollar barrier was broken this week with the first yearling by Frankel (Lot 445) to be auctioned in the Southern Hemisphere purchased by a high profile international syndicate of Adrian Nicoll of BBA Ireland, Tom Magnier of Coolmore Stud, Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum from Dubai, the Niarchos family from France and Apollo Ng from Hong Kong for $1.3m.

Australia was the leading international buying bench, purchasing 239 horses for $30,487,450, a whopping increase of 25% from their spend of $24,450,500 last year, as they accounted for 36% of the total spend for the combined Sale.

Domestic buyers were the biggest buying bench over the six days of selling, purchasing 578 horses for $35,300,950. They accounted for 41% of the total spend while international buyers spent 59% of the $85,648,400 that was turned over at the Sale.

The leading sire by average with three or more sold at the Festival Sale was Jimmy Choux, selling six horses for an average of $36,500, including the day’s top lot. The leading first season sire at the Sale was Hallmark Stud’s Super Easy, selling five horses for an average of $26,100.  

At the top of both the leading vendor by aggregate and average tables today was Haunui Farm, selling seven horses for a total of $316,000 at an average of $45,143.