OBS officials hope the Fall Mixed Sale, long a source of producing Florida-bred stakes winners, concludes the sales company’s strong season on a high note
Buoyed by the confidence that a record-setting sale season instills, Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company officials are cautiously optimistic heading into this week’s Fall Mixed Sale, the sales company’s final offering of the year, which begins its two-day run this afternoon at 1 p.m.
“We know it’s a different segment of the market, but we certainly hope to capitalize on the momentum we have established all year,” said Tod Wojciechowski, director of sales for OBS. “I spoke with a number of consignors over the last few days, and they are positive, but realistic. Overall, they seemed pleased with the steadiness of traffic at the barns. We’re cautiously optimistic on the broodmare side, and I expect fair trade in the weanling market.”
Wojciechowski also is hopeful that recent signs, chief among them, The Jockey Club’s live foal report released in September that showed a nearly five percent increase in live foals by Florida-based stallions compared to the corresponding time in 2011, indicates some returning strength in Florida’s Thoroughbred industry.
“Florida was the only state to show an increase,” he said. “I take that as a good sign that things are getting better. Of course, we’ll have to wait and see if signals like that translate into success at the sale.”
The Fall Mixed Sale owns a history replete with producing leading stakes winners.
The most prominent of the sale’s recent graduates is Florida-bred Flat Out, sold by Thoroughstock, agent, in 2006. Now a 6-year-old, the son of Flatter recently went over the $2 million plateau in earnings when he captured the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) for the second consecutive year on Sept. 29. Trained by Bill Mott for Preston Stables, Flat Out is currently targeting the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Santa Anita.
Additional Fall Sale graduates who have annexed 2012 graded stakes events include fellow Florida-breds Rolling Fog, winner of the Del Mar Futurity (G1), Currency Swap, who won Saratoga’s Amsterdam Stakes (G2), as well as Another Romance, C C’s Pal and Great Attack.
A total of 420 horses have been cataloged for this week’s offering. Hip numbers 1-172 are slated to sell today beginning at 1 p.m. in the Consignor Preferred session. Hip numbers 173-420 sell on Wednesday in the single Open Session, which gets underway at 10:30 a.m.
For prospective buyers with an eye to the future, the sale features 168 weanlings. The sire roster of the weanlings consists of the likes of Big Brown, Congrats, Majestic Warrior, Midnight Lute, Mizzen Mast, Old Fashioned, and Scat Daddy. Some Florida sires represented by weanlings include Ocala Stud’s High Cotton, Stonewall Farm Ocala’s Leroidesanimaux (BRZ), Journeyman Stud’s Wildcat Heir and Hartley/De Renzo Thoroughbreds’ With Distinction, just to name a few.
Some first crop sires standing in Florida represented at the sale include Hartley/De Renzo Thoroughbreds’ Cool Coal Man, and Vinery’s Kantharos. Others include Distinctly Mine, Super Saver and Tale of Ekati.
Also featured in the sale are mares in foal to a strong group of Florida stallions. Sunshine State stallions with mares in foal in the sale include: Stonewall Farm Ocala’s Leroidesanimaux, Big Drama, General Quarters, A.P. Warrior, Greatness, Causeway’s Kin, Motovato and Telling; Double Diamond Farm’s First Dude; Ocala Stud’s High Cotton, Gottcha Gold and Silver Tree; Northwest Stud’s Gone Astray; Journeyman Stud’s Awesome of Course, Teuflesberg, Wildcat Heir, Hear No Evil, Exclusive Quality, J P’s Gusto, Saint Anddan, Cowtown Cat, Vineyard Haven and Circular Quay; Hartley/De Renzo’s City Place and With Distinction; Winding Oaks Farm’s Graeme Hall; Bridlewood Farm’s In Summation, Keyed Entry, Yesbyjimminy and Put It Back; Vinery’s Maimonides, Benny the Bull and Kantharos; and Get Away Farm’s Two Step Salsa and Imperialism. Buyers can also acquire mares in foal to Uncle Mo, Archarcharch and leading freshman sire Spring at Last, who could be represented in the Breeders’ Cup by graded stakes winners Spring Venture and Spring in the Air.
Leading buyer at the 2011 Fall Mixed Sale taking home three head for $131,000 was Rustlewood Farm. Machmer Hall bought four horses out of last year’s sale for $120,000. Summerfield led all consignors, selling 76 head for $557,800. Pauls Mill Bloodstock, agent was next, selling 17 for $239,200.
The top-selling horse of last year’s sale at $95,000 was the mare Great Venue, a daughter of Unbridled’s Song who sold in foal to Scat Daddy. Consigned by Glen Hill Farm, the mare was purchased by Rustlewood Farm. All told, 84 head sold in the preferred session for $1,112,200, good for a $13,220 average. A total of 186 sold in the open session, grossing $1,132,000 and averaged $6,086.
Catalog and pedigree updates for this week’s sale may be viewed via a sortable master index on the OBS website at www.obssales.com. The Master Index also includes links to pedigree updates via www.equineline.com. The sale will be streamed live via the OBS website and also via the Blood-Horse and Daily Racing Form websites.
Photo by Brock Sheridan