By Perry Lefko
Photo: Father Dave
LEXINGTON, KY – The 2015 Lexington Selected Sale did well, despite concerns going into it that Canadian and European buyers would not be as bullish about spending this year due to their struggling economies and the cost of doing business in American currency.
“We’re very pleased, our sales were very good,” Randy Manges, co-manager of Lexington Select, told Harness Racing Update following the conclusion of the five-day sale on Friday night.
“Every day we were close to being even or up. Tonight we were up about 15% over last year, averaging $16,022 while a year ago it was $13,926. I was surprised (the sale) did as well as it did with the Canadian buyers being as strong as they were. In Canada, the Ontario-breds supply is way down in light of what has happened in recent years (with the cancellation of the lucrative Slots At Racetrack Program in 2013). The number of Ontario-breds is way down, so there’s much more of a demand for them. We had some very good Ontario-breds. Not that we had a lot of Ontario-breds, but we had some very good ones.”
Manges added the struggling European market and the financial impact it had on buyers spending in U.S. dollars also represented a significant concern.
“The past few years the (U.S.) dollar was not as strong against the Euro and we had been doing well with the European market,” Manges added. “I wasn’t quite as optimistic this year as I was in the past with how well we’ve doing with the European market. But it turned out well for us.”
Overall, 642 horses sold for $29,031,000, averaging $45,220. A year ago, 687 horses sold for $39,857, which represents a 13.46% increase on average. A year ago, the average had a 10.6% boost from 2013.
Friday’s sale saw 91 horses sold for $1,458,000, averaging $16,022.
The $75,000 sales topper on Friday night was Father Dave, a bay pacing colt by Always A Virgin-My Best Girl, purchased by Joe Holloway of New Jersey and consigned by Preferred Equine Inc. Agent for Copper Cat Farm.
The second-highest purchased horse was Best Trick Ever, a $55,000 bay pacing colt by Cambest-Best Trick Ever, purchased by John Como, Jr., of New Jersey and consigned by Preferred Equine Inc. Agent for Denim Stable.
The final sales day included 24 pacing colts sold for a total of $504,000, averaging $21,000. 25 pacing fillies sold $358,000, averaging $14,320. 18 trotting colts sold for $237,000, averaging $13,167. 24 trotting fillies sold for $359,000, averaging $14,950.
Overall, 146 pacing colts sold for $7,313,000, averaging $50,089. 154 pacing fillies sold for $5,823,000, averaging $37,812. 182 trotting colts sold for $9,040,000, averaging $49,670. 160 trotting fillies sold for $6,855,000, averaging $42,844.
Tony Alagna, agent, led all buyers in total spending with $1,487,000 on 13 horses. Robert Lindstrom, agent, placed second overall with $1,340,000 on 10 horses. Jimmy Takter followed with $1,017,000 on 13 horses. Burke Racing Stable led all buyers in total purchases with 14 totaling $864,000.
Preferred Equine, Inc., led all consignors with $6,278,000 in total sales and the most horses sold, 132. Hunterton Sales Agency, Inc., placed second with $3,964,000 on 75 horses sold. Winbak Farm followed with $2,252,000 from 56 horses sold.
Muscle Hill led all sires with 49 offspring totaling $4,229,000 and averaging $86,300.
Somebeachsomewhere placed second with 44 offspring selling for $3,779,000, averaging $85,886.
The 2015 sale showed promise right from the start when two trotting colts sold for $350,000 each. One was Federal Hill, a son of Muscle Hill, who was purchased by Mario Zuanetti’s Atlantic Trot, acting as the agent for Finnish owner Reima Kuisla. The colt is a half-brother to Father Patrick and Pastor Stephen and was sold by Brittany Farms. The other $350,000 purchase was Live For Greatness, a son of Cantab Hall out of Forever Graceful, purchased by agent Robert Lindstrom on behalf of Lennart Agren’s SRF Stable. Agren also owns Elitloppet winner Magic Tonight and the top mare D’One.