Australian Thoroughbred

A-Z of Australian Horse Racing and Breeding.

Record day of trade to begin 2020 Classic Sale

9th Feb 2020

A record individual day of selling for the Classic Sale was one of many highlights of today’s action at Riverside that saw tears, near cyclonic weather conditions and fierce bidding across the session.

An I Am Invincible x Limbo Down filly offered by Mike O’Donnell’s Fairhill Farm - on behalf of Reg and Greg Kemister - stole the show, selling to Star Thoroughbreds and Randwick Bloodstock Agency for $350,000.

As lot 256 on a day when 270 yearlings were catalogued, it was late in the day when the stunning filly entered a full Riverside auditorium and after an intense bidding battle, Star’s Denise Martin came out triumphant.

Martin purchased the full sister at last year’s Classic Sale and wasn’t going home without the sibling today.

“Her sister Joviality was supposed to trial this week in Sydney but I suspect with this weather that will be in serious doubt now but she’s very talented,’’ Martin said.

“We’ve had such wonderful success with I Am Invincible fillies off Mike O’Donnell including Fiesta, that I bought from this exact sale a few years ago. As they’re getting older, we’re trying to replenish the stocks.

“We saw this filly, we loved her so I said to Mike ‘I’ll just come and buy whatever you’ve got!

“It’s a great sale, Classic. These horses coped very well in today’s testing weather conditions and like every sale, if you look through all of the catalogue and decide what you want, you’ll see there’s some lovely horses here.’’

O’Donnell was thrilled for long-time breeders the Kemisters, who weren’t expecting such a big price.

“We thought $245,000 so it’s a very good result,’’ O’Donnell said.

“She was very, very busy this week with all of her parades, we knew a lot of people liked her.

“We’re very pleased for Reg Kemister who owns the mare, it’s a great result for him and a great result for the farm.’’

The day’s top lot was part of a flurry of action late in the day which saw the Day 1 gross end at $17,733,00, a record single day of trade at a Classic Sale, eclipsing Day 3 of the boom 2018 edition.

The day closed with an average of $91,881 – an 18% increase on the same time last year – and median of $80,000.

Today’s second-top lot was a Deep Field x Fragrant Storm colt (lot 155) from Fairview Park Stud, which sold to China Horse Club/Newgate Bloodstock/Starlight Racing for $320,000.

Offered on behalf of sisters Rowena Galvin and Bethwyn Trewern, the only advice Fairview Park’s Linda Duckworth gave the small-time breeders was to “sit back and enjoy the ride’’.

“They’ve been clients for a long time, haven’t always had the best of luck but today was really fantastic for them and for the farm,’’ Duckworth said.

“There probably wasn’t really a plan going in. I thought we’d be pretty right but you never really know. I just said to the girls to enjoy the ride. They sure did that!

“He was out all day every day the colt during the week. He was very popular, had a lot of hits on X-Rays so I went into the vendor box feeling pretty happy and it’s nice to see that furnish into a great price in the ring. I’m just so excited for them.’’

China Horse Club’s Michael Wallace said of the colt, who will end up with Randwick trainer Peter Snowden: “He was very physical, a lot of quality about him.

“You could see a lot of Deep Field and a lot of Exceed And Excel through him.

“He’s the 2YO blend that we’re looking for, fast types that hopefully can be back in the big 2YO races next year. We’re all dreaming and hoping.’’

A pair of colts shared third billing for the day at $240,000 – Gai Waterhouse/Adrian Bott/Chris Rutten Bloodstock/Vantage Thoroughbreds purchased a Sebring x Canny Time colt (lot 39) from Yarraman while China Horse Club and Newgate Bloodstock bought a Hinchinbrook x Heat of the Fire colt from Bell River Thoroughbreds (lot 178).

This is the first sale Bell River has sold at in six years and James Ferguson couldn’t have been happier with the result.

“This is what we wanted to do, to come back with a bang and show the quality of stock we’ve got on offer. It’s a good start,’’ he said.

“He’s a quality colt and it’s pleasing he’s been bought by quality judges who know what they’re doing. We’ve got no doubt he’ll be a proper 2YO who will go on to be a proper 3YO as well.’’

On the Sebring colt he co-purchased, Bott admitted there was one primary reason for the purchase.

“We want to get a horse that will get us back to the Millennium next year and he’s an ideal candidate,’’ he said.

“He’s a lovely forward type, nice imposing individual. I think he should be up running early for us – they’re the sort of type we’re trying to target out of this sale.’’

Inglis’ General Manager of Bloodstock Sales and Marketing Sebastian Hutch was pleased with the day’s trade.

“It has been a very positive start to the sale and particularly fulfilling for our team to see vendors who have supported Classic again this year rewarded with some outstanding results across the day,’’ Hutch said.

“Some of the measures of the performance of the sale at this stage are really excellent and the expectation is that the clearance rate will continue to grow as our team works with vendors on passed-in lots.

“We have been at pains to stress in the lead-up to the sale the opportunities that abound for buyers at Classic, so it is great to see so many people here and bidding strongly.

“The depth of the buying bench bodes well for the next couple of days, so we are looking forward to getting stuck in again tomorrow.”

To view today’s Inglis TV Story on Middlebrook Valley Lodge’s Verna Metcalfe, CLICK HERE.

To view our Facebook Live Day 1 wrap, CLICK HERE.

To make an offer on a Passed In lot from today or at any stage throughout the sale, contact Harry Bailey on 0420 997 417.

To view all the statistics from Day 1 of Classic, CLICK HERE.

The remaining two days of the 2020 Classic Yearling Sale will begin at 10am and will again be broadcast live on the Inglis website and Facebook page, while Online Bidding and Make An Offer facilities will again be available.

The Highway Session (Book 2) is on Tuesday following the completion of the main book.

To view the catalogue, CLICK HERE.


Lots sold: 193

Clearance rate: 78%

Average Price: $91,881

Median Price: $80,000

Top Price: $350,000

Gross: $17,733,000