The well-bred, Group-placed three-year-old Carracci led the way during the opening session of the Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale in Newmarket on Monday when sold by Coolmore for 320,000gns to agent Aidan O’Ryan, acting on behalf of the Saudi Arabian-based ownership group SBS Global.
Successful on his debut for Aidan O’Brien nearly a year ago at Dundalk, the Quality Road colt has shown good form since, notably when running third to stablemate Hans Andersen in the Group 3 Leopardstown 2000 Guineas Trial. He was last seen finishing fourth to Piz Badile in the Listed Diamond Stakes at Dundalk.
Carracci also hails from one of the most successful families in the stud book being out of the Group 3-placed Butterflies, a Galileo daughter of blue Mariah’s Storm and therefore a half-sister to champion Giant’s Causeway in addition to Group 2 winner You’resothrilling, herself the dam of Classic winners Gleneagles, Joan Of Arc and Marvellous.
“He was the pick of the sale today, a lovely horse,” said O’Ryan. “His form is good and he has a brilliant pedigree. His sire speaks for himself – they love Quality Road in Saudi Arabia. I should think he’ll go straight there.”
He added: “SBS Global buy plenty of horses – they bought in Keeneland [September] and were buying here in the autumn. This is the first one I’ve bought for them. I got a call asking if I would help as they were keen to get this horse and I was happy to give them a hand. This was the main one they wanted and they pushed the boat out for him.”
A pair of promising once-raced two-year-olds also drew their share of attention, with the well-bred filly Firebird commanding an online bid of 260,000gns from Matt Coleman and Paddy Twomey before the sale of Rascal Recknell for 215,000gns to Sam Wright Bloodstock and trainer Kevin Philippart de Foy.
Still unraced when the catalogue went to press, Firebird caught the eye earlier this month when second to the more experienced colt Golden Strike for trainer Rebecca Menzies in a maiden at Ayr. That performance suggested that she should be well capable of emulating her siblings Tolstoy and Balalaika, both of whom operate at a fair level; Balalaika ran third in this year’s Sandringham Handicap at Royal Ascot, after which she sold for 330,000gns at the Tattersalls July Sale. They are out of War And Peace , a half-sister to Saturday’s Qipco British Champions Fillies & Mares Stakes runner-up Bluestocking.
“She has been bought for a client as a racing and then breeding prospect, and goes to Paddy Twomey,” said Coleman. “We know the filly well as I looked after the late Sir Robert and Lady Ogden’s horses.
“The filly has always shown plenty in training and put in a promising race on her debut. Fingers crossed, she can go on to get some black-type next year.”
“All of the mare’s runners have achieved high ratings, and this year’s Too Darn Hot yearling made 110,000gns [when bought by Tom Whitehead’s Powerstown Stud]. You also have Bluestocking, under the second dam. It’s a happening family.”
Rascal Recknell, meanwhile, will carry the colours of Wee Sean Gan, the owner of recent Cornwallis Stakes winner Inquisitively, following his sale. The son of Wootton Bassett ran a good third on his debut for Owen Burrows at Sandown in August, a performance that came to look even better when the fourth home, Skellet, ran a close second in the Oh So Sharp Stakes at Newmarket.
“The plan is the same as with Inquisitively,” said the trainer. “We’ll have Rascal Recknell before he is sent to Hong Kong. He’s a nice, big horse with plenty of scope and the plan is to give him as much time as he needs because he has a big frame. He’s a very nice prospect.”
Those hunting for National Hunt prospects were also out in force, notably Tom Malone, who outbid Harold Kirk at 215,000gns for the progressive three-year-old handicapper Golden Move.
The Golden Horn colt, who won over 1m4f at Doncaster in the summer for Richard Fahey before running placed off a mark of 82 at York and Nottingham, now heads to Paul Nicholls.
“He’s a big, beautiful, scopey horse, a lovely animal,” said Malone after outbidding Harold Kirk. “He looks like he wants all of a mile and a half with his run style, and he goes on soft ground.
“We’ll cut him and give him time. We loved him – he was the one we wanted today.”