Two down, one to go
It is New Zealand Bloodstock’s turn to stage their annual Ready To Run Sale and the 2023 edition is set to be held within an uncertain market.
Two recent similar sales, in Sydney and on the Gold Coast, were mixed at best. The Inglis Ready2Race Sale in Sydney was at times hard going resulting in a 33 per cent drop in aggregate from the previous year, yet the average was slightly up on 2022. Two weeks later the Magic Millions Gold Coast 2YOs In Training Sale’s aggregate was off 26 per cent from the figure recorded in 2022, while there was a 27 per cent drop in average, but Magic Millions still described the sale as ‘better than expected’.
What can NZB expect? With significant history to call upon, one advantage that NZB has is results. Repeat vendors have bags of previous sales experience. Many have this type of sale down to fine art. In particular is the breeze-ups, held at one venue (Te Rapa) versus widely spread out. That constant probably makes more sense to buyers who are better able to compare lots.
The buying criteria associated with such sales is quite different from the yearling sales. While the two-year-olds are closer to racing and buyers can see how they run, buyers have to switch gears, relying on their judgement about a galloping two-year-old versus a walking yearling.
The track for both days of the breeze–ups provided a perfect surface with 34 lots recording 200m times of 10.50 seconds or less and a further 189 lots which recorded times between 10.51 seconds and 10.99 seconds.
The honour for the fastest breeze–up, an electric 10.07 seconds, went to Lot 25, an Ardrossan (Redoute’s Choice) colt from the KB Bloodstock draft. His breeze-up partner, a Justify (Scat Daddy) colt, Lot 105, recorded 10.14 seconds.
A common remark at any thoroughbred auction is: “There is something for everyone”. Regarding sires, that is certainly true here. The difference compared to yearling sales is the smaller volume. All the top sires are represented.
The lots by Savabeel (Zabeel), I Am Invincible (Invincible Spirit) and Zoustar (Northern Meteor) may well dominate the sale, and why shouldn’t they? All three are well proven and are always in demand at any sale.
Eight-time champion New Zealand sire Savabeel has nine lots and every single lot has a strong reason for its purchase. Lot 80 is colt out of twice Listed-placed US winner, Joyous Thunder (Kitten’s Joy), while Lot 151 is a colt from Navapura (Jimmy Choux), a half-sister to three Group winners.
Lot 182 is a gelding from dual Group 2 winner Platinum Princess (Keeper) and Lot 218 is a colt from winning mare Samoon (Fastnet Rock), herself a half-sister to Oakleigh Plate (Gr 1, 1100m) winner Shamal Wind (Dubawi). Lot 260 is a colt out of Subatomic (Makfi), herself a half-sister to three international Group or Listed winners, while Lot 279 is the half-brother to dual Group 1 winner Tiptronic (O’Reilly).
Lot 281 is the son of Melbourne winner and Group 3–placed Toffee Nose (Toorak Toff), while also set to go under the hammer is Lot 297 is a colt from Virgina (O’Reilly), herself a sister to four-time Group 1 winner Alamosa. If buyers are patient, the very last lot in the catalogue, Lot 383, is the Savabeel half-brother to triple Group 2 winner Spanish Whisper (Lope De Vega).
Meanwhile, reigning champion Australian sire I Am Invincible is represented by two colts, Lot 107 whose dam, Lope De Lope (Lope De Vega), won in Sydney and whose grandam, Litter (Catbird), was a dual Listed winner in Sydney and Brisbane. The only other horse by the Yarraman Park stallion in the catalogue is Lot 172 and he is a son of dual Group 3 winner Pecans (Skilled).
Leading sire Zoustar, whose stock is in top recent stakes form, has three lots on offer. Lot 106 is a colt from a sister or half-sister to three Group winners including Australian Derby (Gr 1, 2400m) winner Levendi (Pierro), while he is also represented by Lot 190, who is a gelded son of Caulfield Group 3 winner Princess Of Queens (Magnus).
Last season’s champion New Zealand sire Proisir (Choisir) has nine lots up for grabs, which is one more than prolific sire of winners, Deep Field (Northern Meteor), whose stock are always well received.
Arguably the hottest sire all around the world over the last six to eight weeks is Justify who has five lots, including Lot 251 is a daughter of Listed–placed Special Memories, a Fastnet Rock (Danehill) sister to Australian Oaks (Gr 1, 2400m) winner Unforgotten. Plenty of residual value here.
Looking for another Lucky Sweynesse? His sire Sweynesse (Lonhro) has ten to choose from.
Still looking for another Lucky Sweynesse? His half-brother by Contributer (High Chaparral) is catalogued as Lot 116.
Sweynesse’s sire Lonhro (Octagonal) has two lots including Lot 215, a half-brother to dual Group 1 winner Lizzie L’Amour (Zabeel).
Lonhro’s son Pierro is also represented by two lots, including Lot 47 is a daughter of Group 3 scorer Full Of Spirit (Flying Spur), herself a half-sister to five stakes winners including triple Group 1 winner Bonneval (Makfi). This is a top stakes–producing family.
On fire right now is Pride Of Jenni’s sire Pride Of Dubai (Street Cry) and he has one lot catalogued, as does high–flying Dundeel (High Chaparral).
Per Incanto (Street Cry) is represented by five lots. Lot 77 is the half-brother to one of the leading three-year-olds from last season, Group 2 winner and twice Group 1–placed Desert Lightning (Pride Of Dubai).
Savabeel’s young barnmate, Super Seth (Dundeel) has begun his career with two early winners from his first crop and has four lots on offer including Lot 175, a daughter of New Zealand Thoroughbred Breeders’ Stakes (Gr 1, 1600m) winner Perfect Fit (Elusive City).
Another Waikato inmate is Ardrossan, whose first crop (now three-year-olds) produced three stakes winners. He has three lots for sale.
With first crop just turned two-year-olds, including Gimcrack Stakes (Gr 3, 1000m) winner Manaal, Tassort (Brazen Beau) is up and running and has Lot 183, a son of US Listed winner Plethora (First Samurai).
Almanzor (Wootton Bassett), with eight lots, has Lot 201, a son of Queensland Oaks (Gr 1, 240m) winner Quintessential (Fast ‘N‘ Famous).
The Autumn Sun (Redoute’s Choice), whose oldest are three-year-olds, is warming up and has two lots, both well related.
There is just one by Fastnet Rock but on pedigree Lot 71 has much to recommend him, being a son of the Group 3 and Listed winner Igraine (Galileo).
Just two lots (after withdrawals) represent Turn Me Loose (Iffraaj) and Lot 69 is the half-brother to dual Group 1 winner and successful sire Kermadec (Teofilo).
Churchill (Galileo) is making plenty of noise in both hemispheres and has two lots for sale, including Lot 76, a colt by Telegraph Handicap (Gr 1, 1200m) winner Irish Fling (Darci Brahma).
There are four lots by up and coming sire War Decree (War Front) and 11 by Tarzino (Tavistock).
Three interesting lots are: Lot 247, by Ten Sovereigns (No Nay Never), the half-sister to recent Group 3 winner Sakura Girl (Iffraaj). Lot 336 is by first–season sire Microphone (Exceed And Excel) and is a half-brother to the lightly raced but talented Star Of Bombay (Atlante). Lot 338, by Ocean Park (Thorn Park), is a son of Thorndon Mile (Gr 1, 1600m) winner A Touch Of Ruby (Pins) and therefore closely related to brilliant dual Group 1 Flemington heroine Pride Of Jenni.