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The CTS De Grendel Ready To Run & Unbroken Two-Year-Old Sale held at Kenilworth Racecourse on Sunday yielded a most satisfactory aggregate of R16 480 000 (up 33%), an average of R156 952 (up 43%), and a median of R110 000 (up 37,5%), and compared very favourably to the 2020 aggregate of R12 335 000, an average of R110 134 and a median of R80 000.

The 2021 statistics measure up well to the 2020 figures, considering that 23% fewer horses went through the ring this year, and there was reason for good cheer when the sale concluded on Sunday evening.

The top seller was Drakenstein Stud’s Querari colt Franz Lehar (#36) purchased for R830 000 on behalf Hong Kong owner David Hui and former SA-based trainer David Ferraris by KZN Champion trainer Garth Puller.

Franz Lehar is bred on the same cross as graded stakes winners Head Honcho and Kampala Campari, and is a half-brother to the smart Danilo Danilovitch. His dam is Listed East Cape Fillies Nursery/Perfect Promise Sprint winner, The Merry Widow.

Puller said: “I am happy with what I saw at the gallops, and he is a lovely colt. The sale was well organised, and hats off to the organisers and the vendors for the professionalism and hospitality.”

The top buyer was Greg Bortz, who purchased 12 lots for a gross R3 030 000 at an average of R252 500. His highest bid went to Grecian Green, a lovely colt by Gimmethegreenlight from Nadeson Park Stud.

Julia Pilbeam’s Soetendal Estate has become the industry leader in the prep of the Ready To Run youngsters and they led the vendor aggregate with 38 lots, grossing R7 240 000, at an average of R190 526.

William Longsword was top grosser through sheer weight of numbers – his 13 lots grossing R2,4 million at an average of R184 615. Newly crowned SA champion sire Gimmethegreenlight’s quartet grossed R1 730 000 at a sale-leading average of R432 500.

Vercingetorix sired the last two winners of the Ready To Run Stakes, and the Maine Chance flagbearer averaged R175 000 for his pair.

The Ready To Run weekend started on Friday morning with the R2R Gallops at Kenilworth, and then flowed into Saturday’s racing, which produced a feature cliffhanger in the R900 000 CTS De Grendel RTR Stakes, with Fifty Fiver banking the big money by the proverbial paper-clip.

CTS MD Grant Knowles commented: “We are extremely happy and satisfied with the numbers achieved and the new sales venue, which incorporated the 1881 Lounge and the use of the winner’s enclosure. It was first class.”

Knowles’ views were endorsed pre-sale by breeder Oscar Foulkes, who said that the long weekend of events introduced a sense of occasion, an important part of building the hype and excitement. “Kenilworth is also more central and is a racecourse with ‘a special place’ in South African racing,” said Foulkes.

Next up in the CTS portfolio is the Cape Premier Yearling Sale – save the date for De Grendel on 6 February 2022.

Please click here to see the price list