Although the $9.5 million SONGBIRD (Medaglia d’Oro) and the $8 million TEPIN (Bernstein) dominated the leaderboard at Fasig-Tipton’s November Sale, the Monday evening proceedings were lively even aside from those surefire Hall of Famers. From the initial weanling portion on, producing a new record price of $1 million that was soon equaled, to the supplementary entries at the end, the action was thick and fast in the pavilion, resulting in a record gross.
“The buzz in the pavilion tonight and in the back walking ring was just exceptional,” Fasig-Tipton President Boyd Browning said. “We were fortunate enough to have a great deal of quality on offer tonight. All in all, we’re just ecstatic.”
It was the supplemented QUIDURA (Dubawi), Hip No. 196, who brought the third highest-price when selling to Peter Brant’s White Birch Farm for $3.6 million. Blood-Horse’s Claire Novak reported that trainer Chad Brown signed the ticket, fittingly since Quidura was narrowly beaten by his stable star Lady Eli in the Diana (G1) back in July at Saratoga.
Offered by Brookdale Sales, agent, the Gestut Fahrhof homebred captured the Canadian (G2) two starts back before a sixth in the E.P. Taylor (G1) last out. Also victorious in last season’s Valley View (G3) and placed in the April 15 Jenny Wiley (G1) and June 9 New York (G2), the four-year-old filly sports a mark of 9-4-2-1, $503,786. Quidura was produced by the stakes-placed Acatenango mare Quetana, who is also responsible for German highweights Querari (Oasis Dream) and Quasillo (Sea the Stars).
A pair of four-year-old fillies sold for $3 million apiece – CATCH A GLIMPSE (City Zip), who is bound for Japan after selling to K I Farm Corp., and NICKNAME (Scat Daddy), secured by Kerri Radcliffe Bloodstock.
Nickname was the first of the two to tour the ring as Hip 102, thus briefly grabbing the status as pro-tem leader before Songbird and Tepin brought the house down. Consigned by Claiborne Farm, agent, as a broodmare prospect, she earned her signature win in the 2015 Frizette (G1). She collected a handful of stakes placings, including last year’s Eight Belles (G2), Honeybee (G3) and Beaumont (G3). Last seen finishing second in the June 25 Southern Truce at Santa Anita, Nickname retires with a mark of 11-2-5-2, $557,710. A half-sister to stakes-placed Keeneland track record-setter Hey Mike (Cape Blanco), she is out of the multiple stakes-placed Nina Fever (Borrego).
Catch a Glimpse, cataloged as Hip 157 from Bluewater Sales, agent, reigned as Canada’s Horse of the Year, champion turf female, and champion two-year-old filly during her sensational campaign of 2015. Her marquee wins include the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) and 2016 Belmont Oaks Invitational (G1), as well as a victory over the boys in the Penn Mile (G3) at three. Pulled up in the May 27 Nassau (G2) in what turned out to be her final start, Catch a Glimpse compiled a record of 15-8-2-0, $1,853,615. She is a half-sister to Grade 3-winning sire Old Forester (Forestry), and their dam, multiple stakes heroine Halo River (Irish River), descends from the deep family of champion and classic winner Forest Flower (Green Forest).
Multiple Grade 1-winning millionaire MISS TEMPLE CITY (Temple City) commanded $2.5 million from agent Steve Young, and according to Daily Racing Form, plans call for her to remain stateside. Hip 99 was offered by Select Sales, agent for The Club Racing LLC and partners.
Famous for turning Keeneland’s turf double over males in the 2016 Maker’s 46 Mile (G1) and Shadwell Turf Mile (G1), Miss Temple City also competed at Royal Ascot for the past three summers. She bankrolled $1,680,107 from a 20-7-3-3 line, reflecting scores in last December’s Matriarch (G1), the September 9 Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf (G3), and the 2015 Hilltop. Her six stakes placings include a brutal beat in the 2015 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup (G1) at her beloved Keeneland, where she was badly hampered. Out of the stakes-placed Glittering Tax (Artax), the five-year-old mare is a full sister to Grade 3 vixen Pricedtoperfection (Temple City).
Don Alberto Corp. bought two of the seven-figure sellers, going to $2.2 million to secure Grade 2-placed AMERICAN STORY (Ghostzapper), the dam of current Test (G1) winner American Gal (Concord Point), and $1.85 million for Chilean champion and multiple U.S. Grade 1 heroine DACITA (Scat Daddy), just fourth in last Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (G1).
MESA FRESCA (Sky Mesa), dam of Grade 1 winner Harmonize (Scat Daddy) and in foal to hot sire War Front, was gaveled down to Cheveley Park Stud for $2 million. Bridlewood Farm snapped up Grade 1 queen GOMO (Uncle Mo), carrying her first foal by Medaglia d’Oro, for $1.5 million.
Japanese interest extended well beyond Catch a Glimpse. Katsumi Yoshida went to $1.5 million for last year’s Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint champion FINEST CITY (City Zip), eighth in her title defense Saturday, and paid $1.3 million for COASTED (Tizway), the runner-up in the 2016 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf. His brother Teruya Yoshida’s Shadai Farm likewise purchased two of the million-dollar horses – the $1.3 million LAND OVER SEA (Bellamy Road), a Grade 2-winning half-sister to War Story (Northern Afleet) carrying her first foal by freshman stallion Nyquist, and $1.1 million ILLUMINANT (Quality Road), a Grade 1 victress listed as a broodmare prospect.
Grade 3 queen STAYS IN VEGAS (City Zip), carrying her first foal by Curlin, attracted $1.45 million from James Keogh, agent for Star Guitar Inc. Rounding out the seven-figure mares, Breeze Easy spent $1.1 million apiece for two Grade 1-placed mares in foal to War Front, Grade 3 scorer YAHILWA (Medaglia d’Oro) and stakes winner CROWLEY’S LAW (Dubawi).
The tone was set early on when Hip 21, a weanling sister to Grade 1 queen Callback (Street Sense), sold for a sale record $1 million to Reynolds Bell for Alpha Delta. The March 14 filly is out of Quickest, a Forest Wildcat half-sister to 2010 Kentucky Derby (G1) hero Super Saver (Maria’s Mon).
A weanling filly from the hotly anticipated first crop of Triple Crown champion American Pharoah answered that by tying the new record. A half-sister to 2012 Arkansas Derby (G1) romper and Kentucky Derby and Preakness (G1) runner-up Bodemeister, Hip 46 was knocked down to Narvick International reportedly on behalf of Japanese interests – Yoshiyuki Ito’s Grand Stud. The January 15 foal was produced by the Grade 3-winning Storm Cat mare Untouched Talent.
Upon the conclusion of trade, Fasig-Tipton reported record gross receipts of $74,200,000 realized by 115 horses. That’s up 37 percent from the $54,152,000 grossed by 88 last year. The average rose 4.9 percent, from $615,364 to $645,217. While the $250,000 median declined 33.8 percent from the lofty $377,500 logged in 2016, the sales company noted that it still ranked as the co-second highest median in the sale’s history. And there were four more seven-figure horses this year (19 versus 15).
“We had a remarkable catalog and we had remarkable results tonight,” Boyd summed up.
For complete results, visit fasigtipton.com.