The Autumn Sale, which began with a first day dedicated to horses in training both on the flat and over jumps, posted excellent figures with a record top price of €420,000. Nearly 83% of the horses presented changed hands, a figure up by over 14 points compared to last year in the same section, while the average settled at €26,820, up by nearly 10% compared to last year. The turnover reached €4,479,000, up by nearly 24% compared to last year.
The top price of this first day went to lot 185 SILVERWAVE, a son of Silver Frost who is unbeaten in two starts. A grandson of Verglas, he is a three parts brother to Group 1 winner Stormy River and to three other horses who have made their mark at Listed or Group 3 level. It was his trainer Alain Couétil who eventually signed the docket at €420,000 following a lively bidding war against Matt Coleman. The colt, who will stay in training with him, will now run in the colours of HSpirit, an outfit which has been successful at the highest level thanks to the excellent Spiritjim.
Slightly later in the evening the hammer fell at €320,000 for THE SAINT JAMES on a final bid from Jonjo O’Neill. Placed in the care of François Nicolle, this son of the excellent Saint des Saints, sire of numerous Group 1 winners over jumps, has just recently finished second in the Prix Congress (Gr.2) at Auteuil. The English trainer, who was leading a buyer at the end of the day, also spent €185,000 on lot 230 BOX OFFICE, a three-year-old AQPS with a near-perfect track record. In four starts he has now won three times including two consecutive victories over hurdles. He was also consigned by François Nicolle.
Wild Card 215, AUVERGNAT, proved very popular with English agents Highflyer Bloodstock who bought him for €220,000. Placed in the care of Philippe Peltier, this four-year-old AQPS showed a real liking for jumps when twice winning on the testing new track at Fontainebleau on his last two starts. He will now be trained in England.
Bids went up to €155,000 for lot 179, KINGOVERTHEWATER, a son of Dalakhani trained by Francis-Henri Graffard. This very promising three-year-old ran out the brilliant winner of the Prix Sarepta at Lyon and has just finished second in the Grand Prix du Nord (L.). He was knocked down to Laurent Benoit (Broadhurst Agency) who was acting on behalf of Boétie Racing. The colt will now go into training with Xavier Nakkachdji with the aim of taking part in the Défi du Galop. The man behind Broadhurst Agency also bought lot 177 SORIANO for €72,000, a horse trained by Dominique Sepulchre with two wins and five places to his name in seven starts.
Toby Jones signed the docket at €150,000 for lot 195 ADIMELO. This four-year old AQPS, a grandson of Montjeu, has had a fantastic season highlighted by three wins and two places in six starts. Trained by Fabrice Foucher, he has just won the Prix de la Sensive (B) by eight lengths, one of the classic races for AQPS bumpers. He will from now on be trained in Ireland. The young agent was also seduced by lot 201, CLE EN MAIN, a Voix du Nord half brother to Prix Morgex (Gr.3) winner ONIRALOIN.
The hammer then fell at €120,000 for lot 205, RETOUR EN FRANCE, a protégé of Yannick Fouin who caught the eye of Irishman Harold Kirk. This four-year-old daughter of Robin des Champs has shown a real liking for fences and has recently finished second in the Prix des Pyrénées, a steeplechase run on 18 October this year at Auteuil, just three lengths behind the very good Jean-Paul Gallorini trained Castor Celeste.
French agent Guy Petit also proved very busy today buying 12 lots for a total of €401,000 which propelled him to fourth place on the buyers’ leaderboard. The headline act among his purchases was YALA ENKI (lot 225), trained by Augustin Adeline de Boisbrunet whose latest start was a third place in the Listed Prix Triquerville, run over fences on 23 October this year at Auteuil;
At the end of the first day of sale, ARQANA chairman Eric Hoyeau, declared:
“We have never had such a strong day dedicated to horses in training at the Autumn Sale. We are above all delighted to have registered such a high clearance rate, proof that buyers were present for every category of horse on offer. The figures achieved must please vendors as the good horses on the flat and over jumps were very well sold. The Wild Card system once again showed its worth, by allowing horses with good performances after the catalogue was published to go through the ring and often be sold for very high prices. »
For full results of the sale go to www.arqana.com
The Autumn Sale will continue tomorrow from 1pm with yearlings.