THE names of Mayfair Speculators, Galileo and Ecurie des Monceaux were all over the score sheet on the opening day of the ARQANA August Yearling Sale on Saturday as a trio of youngsters by the perennial champion sire and offered by the famed Normandy nursery registered the three highest prices of the evening when selling to the South African operation, who recently won another Equus Award as champion owners.
Over the first of two evenings forming Part I of the catalogue, 67 yearlings sold – a clearance rate of 82% – for a cumulated €17,302,000 and an impressive average price of €258,239. These figures are way clear of their 2016 counterparts, however it must be remembered that Part I of the catalogue extends alphabetically across the first two nights hence year-on-year comparisons can only safely be done at the end of day 2.
It was left to the very final lot through the ring (lot 88) to break the seven-figure barrier, a feat achieved by a half-brother to two Group 1 winners in ECTOT and MOST IMPROVED. MV Magnier signed the docket on behalf of a partnership also involving Markus Jooste’s Mayfair Speculators and explained:
“He is just a very nice horse and a half-brother to two Group 1 winners so we hope he can become one too. Galileo did something out of the ordinary this year [siring his 70th Gr1 winner] and we believe that the momentum will only carry on.”
A couple of hours earlier, another filly by the same sire and from the same consignment almost reached that round figure but was instead knocked down for €950,000, with Peter Doyle doing the bidding this time. Lot 51 is out of the Listed winner Prudenzia, whose progeny has become a regular hot commodity at ARQANA since her first foal, a filly by Montjeu, sold for €600,000 and went on to win the Gr1 Irish Oaks as Chicquita. Three of her foals are now owned, in full or in part, by Mayfair Speculators as this filly is joining the now four-year-old Craven’s Legend, by Invincible Spirit, as well as her year-older full sister, who cost €1.4 million in the same ring twelve months ago and is now in training with Aidan O’Brien.
“Back into the family!” exclaimed Mayfair Speculators’ Derek Brugman. “We just love this female line, we have Craven’s Legend who unfortunately was injured but is now back in training, and the two-year-old is a late maturing filly that Aidan is very fond of. This one will stay in France to be trained by André Fabre.”
The Doyle/Brugman tandem came back for more to secure lot 65, a half-sister to the Gr3 perfomer Normandy Eagle from the Wertheimer family of Plumania and Left Hand. The final bid was €700,000.
“We just love the pedigree”, offered Brugman. “For us she was one of the two best fillies in the sale, the other one being the daughter of Prudenzia that we bought earlier. She is a very good mover with great substance and obviously from an excellent family. In the longer term, you can’t have enough Galileo fillies to breed from! She will stay in France and go to Nicolas Clément”. - Sporting Post.
Photo: Lot 88: Galileo filly.