South African Gr1 winner Just Sensual, in foal to Frankel, failed to reach her reserve at Monday’s Goffs London Sale.
Bloodhorse,com reports that a short, sharp session of selling took place in a leafy corner of Kensington Palace Gardens and by the time the last of 22 lots had been offered at the sale held in association with QIPCO, 10 horses had sold for turnover of £3.15 million (US$3,963,640).
Heading trade was Mohican Heights, the 2-year-old son of Australia who ran out a cozy winner of a Leopardstown maiden on debut for trainer Fozzy Stack last month. After a ping pong round of bidding across Perks Field, it was trainer David Simcock, standing beneath the shade of one of the stretched tents, who won out with an offer of £520,000 ($654,315).
Monday evening was Mohican Heights’ second turn in the sales ring after he was bought by David T. Greathouse II and Jules Sigler through Deuce Greathouse for €100,000 ($115,490) at last year’s Goffs Orby Sale.
The second horse to break the £500,000 ($629,149) barrier was the very last horse offered, with Federico Barberini hitting the half-million mark to secure Pure Zen, a listed-winning daughter of Zoffany, on behalf of an undisclosed Italian client.
The session’s third-top lot came when Matthew Houldsworth landed the rapidly progressive Le Don de Vie with a bid of £460,000 ($578,817). The 3-year-old son of Leroidesanimaux, who was last seen running away with an Epsom handicap on Investec Derby (G1) day, will now continue his racing career with Hughie Morrison.
“He’s been bought for Aziz Kheir, who’s a prominent owner in Australia and also owns half of Marmelo who’s in training with Hughie Morrison,” Houldsworth said. “This horse will be with Hughie for the foreseeable future before possibly heading to Australia, perhaps next season. He’s been bought with Matt Becker of Group 1 Bloodstock, who looks after Aziz’s interests.”
Given the premium nature of the lots on offer, with 13 horses boasting a Royal Ascot entry, it was not a huge surprise to see a number fail to reach their ambitious reserve prices. One such lot was Forever In Dreams, a listed-winning daughter of Dream Ahead offered by Con Marnane’s Bansha House Stables, who was later secured by the Phoenix Ladies Syndicate in a private deal outside of the ring for £430,000 ($541,068).
The 3-year-old was last seen winning the EBF British Stallion Studs Cecil Frail Stakes for trainer Aidan Fogarty, and is due to line up in the Commonwealth Cup (G1) on Friday.
“She’ll run in the colors of the Phoenix Ladies Syndicate on Friday,” Phoenix Thoroughbreds’ Tom Ludt said. “They’ve had a lot of fun already and had three horses run in the UAE Derby (G2). They didn’t get the results they wanted there but they did great in the run up to that race.”
Forever In Dreams was bred by Marnane, who retained the filly at just €10,000 ($10,857) when she was offered by his daughter, Amy, at the 2016 Goffs November Foal Sale. She is the second foal out of a Green Tune half sister to group 1-winning sprinter Marchand d’Or.
“You can see the page and she’s a good filly,” added Ludt, who attributed the early success of the Phoenix Ladies Syndicate to Pamela Cordina.
The boutique sale saw 10 lots sell for a clearance rate of 45%. The £3.15 million gross was down 15% from last year, while the average of £315,000 ($396,364) was an increase of 10%, and the £332,500 ($418,384) median was also up 10% on last year’s figure of £300,000.
“The sixth Goffs London Sale in association with QIPCO welcomed a truly international audience of buyers to the grounds of Kensington Palace on a superb summer’s evening,” Goffs chief executive Henry Beeby said.
“It was a fantastic social occasion to begin Royal Ascot week with some really good business done,” he continued. “Obviously we would have preferred to sell a few more of the horses but with entries at Royal Ascot we view it in an entirely different way, in that if people can achieve a premium at the sale they’ll take the money but if not, they’ll go to Royal Ascot and we’ll be cheering those horses on as well. So we are very grateful for all the support and hope everyone enjoyed themselves.”