Cape Yearling Sale Brings Curtain Down On Sizzling Summer

The United States colt is the topseller

After an emotional and dramatic climax to the Hollywoodbets Kenilworth Summer Festival Of Racing 24 hours earlier, horseracing and breeding folk congregated under sunny skies at the scenic Southern Suburbs track for the BSA Cape Yearling Sale to hopefully find a future champion, and maybe more importantly, to share in the camaraderie of this great game.

In a lovely touch, Auctioneer Graeme Hawkins opened proceedings and paid tribute to soon to retire lifetime trainer Dennis Drier, who went out in style with Live My Life downing SA Horse Of The Year Captain’s Ransom to win the Schweppes Gr3 Prix Du Cap. Hawkins, something of a legend himself, also congratulated KZN hero Michael Roberts on his maiden Gr1 success and wished Gavin van Zyl well in his new role as assistant to his talented son, Gareth.

Happy sales attendees – Gina Goldsmith and Paddy Kruyer (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

But it was young jockey Joshwin Solomons’ awful blunder in the Gordon’s Gin Listed Jet Master Stakes on the big day, that garnered enormous support.

Solomons made the cardinal error of dropping his hands when looking home and hosed, at his only ride on the big day.  While it’s clear and correct that he will be sanctioned, the unprecedented support and empathy for the lad from Manenberg was undivided, with Kenilworth Racing Chairman Greg Bortz amongst those that has publically extended a hand of support.

And the sale itself crowned a memorable summer with increases posted in all of the aggregate, average and median prices, and a number of new stallions making their mark in the sales ring.

The sale’s aggregate rose from R22.57 million to R25.965 million, with the average and median prices increased from R155 655 and R110 000 respectively to R171 954 and R130 000, reflecting the strength and resilience of the Cape Sale this year.

Moutonshoek’s sensational sire The United States, whose progeny include Saturday’s Bloodstock SA Sales Cup (Fillies) winner The Charleston, provided the top lot sold on Sunday.

Palancar, catalogued as Lot 97, was knocked down to Gary Player for R850 000 to stand as the sales topping lot.

Consigned to the auction by Wilgerbosdrift, Palancar, a half-brother to five time winner Belle Of Belize, was produced by the winning Fastnet Rock mare Carrie Bow Cat. The latter’s Listed Upavon Stakes winning half-sister Alsace Lorraine also features as the granddam of Saturday’s Gr2 Carlton Draught Peter Young Stakes heroine Steinem.

Champion sire Gimmethegreenlight, whose daughter Live My Life won Saturday’s Gr3 Prix Du Cap, was responsible for the top priced filly sold on Sunday, with the sire’s Gimmesmoreicecream (Lot 32) sold to Greg Bortz for R800 000.

Consigned to the sale by Varsfontein Stud, Gimmesmoreicecream had received a timeous boost when her Greg Bortz part-owned half-brother Salvator Mundi won the Gr2 New Turf Carriers Western Cape Stayers run on WSB Cape Town Met day.

The beautiful fairer sex topseller (Pic – Candiese Lenferna)

Wilgerbosdrift headed the Leading Vendors list, with the Piketberg based farm selling all 15 of its yearlings for a gross total of R4.2 million.

Wilgerbosdrift’s beautifully bred young stallion Buffalo Bill Cody made a big impression with his first yearlings, and the son of Redoute’s Choice ended the 2023 Cape Yearling Sale as Leading Sire by Aggregate.

Buffalo Bill Cody had all eight of his lots sell for R2,18 million, with his top priced lot, a Narrow Creek Stud consigned colt out of Musical Romance, knocked down to Kestorm Investments for R410 000.

Avontuur General Manager Pippa Mickleburgh was thrilled with the interest in the first-time-at-sale Talk Of The Town (VAR) yearlings, with her trio averaging just under R184 000.

“I cannot complain. A stallion needs numbers, and because of his curtailed racing career Talk Of The Town didn’t get a very big book of mares. But they are good-looking, their Dad could run, and he boasts a stallion’s pedigree. So we are bullish,” she said, adding that there was a particularly lovely vibe at the sale.

“We are all in competition but racing and breeding folk stick together and the emotion, kindness and general support for the likes of Dennis Drier and Michael Roberts, and others, was tangible. It’s really heartening,” she concluded.

Central Route Trading were the Leading Buyers at the sale, and bought nine yearlings for an aggregate of R1,59 million.

A full list of prices and statistics for the Cape Yearling Sale can be found here.

Next up is the BSA National Yearling Sale on 21 and 22 April.

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