A flashy son of popular Coolmore sire Munnings was the star turn of a selective opening session of the Tattersalls Craven Sale in Newmarket on Tuesday.
For many vendors, it was all or nothing, with the market unforgiving towards those lots that failed to ‘tick all the boxes’. On the other hand, several major pinhook scores were also enjoyed; although less than half the pinhooks through the ring made a profit, they included an Acclamation colt who leapt in value from £38,000 to 220,0000gns for A. N. Bloodstock and an Exceed And Excel colt who blossomed from a €22,000 weanling to 190,000gns two-year-old for Yeomanstown Stud.
When all was done and dusted, the figures took a hit with 59 horses selling for a total of 6,495,500gns. Compared to the corresponding session in 2022, the average and median dropped by nine and ten per cent to 110,093gns and 77,000gns. The clearance rate, which included several private sales, was 69 per cent, down from 78 per cent.
At $150,000, the colt had been a punchy pinhook by Mick Murphy and Ted Durcan out of last year’s Keeneland September Sale but he proved well worth the effort and expense when reselling for 360,000gns to Oliver St Lawrence.
“I bought him in the US to come to the Craven, we thought he’d suit this sale,” said Murphy. “He was very popular, we had a lot of the right people on him. I was very hopeful, but you never know.
“He is a horse who wants good ground and he breezed exceptionally well considering the conditions.”
Alluding to Munnings’ standout performer Jack Christopher, currently standing his debut season for Coolmore in America, Murphy added: “He is a quick horse and a lot of people said he is very similar to Jack Christopher.”
Fawzi Nass is also in a position to appreciate Munnings, having trained one of his most talented daughters Shahama to win the UAE Oaks for KHK Racing. That particular filly was also sourced by connections at the breeze-ups, although in her case at the OBS Sales in Florida.
“Roger and I were both keen on this colt,” said St Lawrence. “He’s a taking horse who looks like could possibly get to Ascot. We’ll see.
“We’ve had luck with Munnings before with Shahama – she did well in Dubai for Fawzi so he’s a stallion that we like. He did a perfectly nice time without setting the world alight. Mick [Murphy] brings them along nicely and he was presented in good condition.”
The Munnings colt wasn’t the only American pinhook to fare well on Tuesday evening, with a Blame filly from Tom Whitehead’s Powerstown Stud realising 225,000gns to agent Marco Bozzi. The filly was purchased by her vendor for $40,000 at Keeneland last September.
Blue Point popular
Few young sires are attracting as much chatter as Darley’s Blue Point and not long after firing in his third winner courtesy of impressive Newmarket scorer Blue Storm, he was again attracting attention, this time in the ring thanks to a colt out of Listed winner Rebecca Rocks who sold for 340,000gns to Anthony Stroud.
Vendor Tally-Ho Stud played the long game with this colt, having pinhooked him for 70,000gns as a Tattersalls December foal.
“He is a very nice horse, a neat two-year-old type by Blue Point, who has got off to flying start,” said Stroud. “He breezed well and comes from Tally-Ho Stud, who have produced so many good horses.”
Tally-Ho Stud was later on the mark thanks to one of the best-bred fillies of the day, a Territories half-sister to last year’s Cheveley Park Stakes winner Lezoo. Pinhooked for 92,000gns by Hamish Macauley out of Book 1 of the Tattersalls October Sale, she resold for 240,000gns to trainer Michael O’Callaghan.
Teme Valley partnership
Teme Valley broke new ground when partnering up with Coolmore to secure a Starspangledbanner colt knocked down for 320,000gns.
Ryan is in a fine position to appreciate the merits of Starspangledbanner having bought one of his most celebrated performers, State Of Rest, as a yearling. Like State Of Rest, this colt is set to join Joseph O’Brien.
“He is an exceptional individual, he breezed very well and he is not unlike State Of Rest,” said Ryan. “There are huge similarities – this colt has a good girth, great movement, a good mind, everything that you would like to see in a youngster.
It is Teme Valley’s first foray with Coolmore as partners and we are thrilled – we loved the horse, let’s hope he is lucky.”
He added: “I don’t think he will be too long to get to the racecourse, he is a natural easy mover with a great mind. He has every chance of being active this season, that what is we are hoping for. Joseph knows this type of horse exceptionally well and handles them brilliantly. It is a good fit all round.”
A brother to two-time Hong Kong winner Nordic Dragon, the colt is the second foal out of dual scorer Rely On My and was a relatively inexpensive 62,000gns Tattersalls October Book 2 purchase by vendor Willie Browne signing as J B Bloodstock.
“He’s the best physical I’ve had for many years,” said Browne. “I’ve never had so many vets on a horse. I genuinely think the world of him. He could be a Coventry horse in my opinion.”
On a good evening for the consignor, Browne also sold a Siyouni colt for 260,000gns to the Hong Kong Jockey Club. Bred by Mountarmstrong Stud out of the fast Listed-placed mare Reticent Angel, the colt was originally bought back by his breeder for €180,000 as a Goffs Orby yearling.
The second and final session of the Tattersalls Craven Sale takes place today from 5.45pm.