A colt by Kitalpha, the full brother to pensioned top international sire Kingmambo, was reported as sold for $110,000 during the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky October yearling sale on Monday. It was the highest price ever for a Kitalpha yearling at public auction. The 11-year-old Mr. Prospector horse out of champion turf female Miesque began his stud career in Zimbabwe in 2003.
Gerry and Dana Aschinger, who own War Horse Place in Lexington, bought unraced Kitalpha privately and brought him to Kentucky in February 2008.
“He was in Zimbabwe, and the farm where he stood was being threatened to get taken over in a political fray that was going on down there,” Dana Aschinger said. “We heard he was for sale, got our bid in, and we bought him sight unseen through bloodstock agent Dick Lawson.
“He’s a magnificent-looking horse—very classy and powerful looking. He’s a full hand taller than Kingmambo at 16.3. He’s a big boy, real scopey with a long leg, and he puts a ton of leg on the foals.”
From 177 foals of racing age, including 25 current two-year-olds, Kitalpha has 82 winners, 11 stakes winners, and three South African group winners. He also has three champions in Zimbabwe, including two-time Horse of the Year Rebecca’s Fleet.
“People might say, ‘Well that’s South African racing,’ but South Africa has very, very competitive racing,” Dana Aschinger said.
“And his foals run a distance, they run short, they win on grass, and they win on dirt. They can do everything.”
Kitalpha apparently needed no introduction toMargueritte Mitchell of M&M Racing, who bought the $110,000 colt out of multiple stakes winner Champagne Royal, by Jeblar.
“Kitalpha is a full brother to Kingmambo, and this colt looks just like Kingmambo,” Mitchell said. “He’s smooth, balanced, and everything about him was just right. I love Kingmambo, and Miesque is one of the best broodmares of all time.
“I decided to splurge today. I went out on a limb, but I think Kitalpha is going to hit. He’s not quite on everybody’s radar yet, but I think people will take notice next year.”
Mitchell said she has been in the horse business off and on for 15 years. She said her stable is based in Lakewood Ranch, Florida. Aschinger said she was thrilled with the price.
“We thought he was a classy colt. He’s very proud, he’s very brave. We were actually hoping to keep him,” Aschinger said. “We didn’t think we would sell him because of the way the sale was going. We were ready to buy him back.”
Kitalpha, War Horse’s only stallion, covered 64 mares in 2008, 132 in ’09, and 124 this year, Aschinger said.
“Sometimes, if a horse isn’t with one of the big farms, people don’t take them seriously and you can’t get enough traffic to your farm,” Aschinger said. “We did a lot of advertising and, luckily, he’s such an attractive horse, everyone who sees him likes him.”