Over $50 million and counting in Lexington

Thanks to another record-breaking session on Friday night, the Lexington auction is pushing farther into unchartered territory going into tonight’s final session.

quotes by James Platz / story by Dave Briggs

During Friday night’s (Oct. 9) fourth session, the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale broke $50 million in gross sales for the first time in its history as the night saw 165 yearlings sell for $4,771,000, total, to produce an average of $28,915. The median was $25,000.

“We averaged nearly $30,000 tonight, so that’s very healthy,” said sale co-manager David Reid.

As for breaking $50 million, Reid said, “I’ve been wrong the last 10 years. I’m always on the conservative side and I think experiencing it is gratifying for everybody.

“Each time you go on the road in the spring time and you talk to your breeders and you talk to your consignors and start the whole process, then, you see the building blocks and to have them come to fruition and sell like this, and be received like it is, that’s very gratifying for Randy and myself.”

Friday set records for gross and average for a fourth session, making it the fourth straight record-breaking session this year.

The sale average on Friday was up 32 per cent from the average of $21,917 from the same session last year and up 6 per cent from the fourth-session average of $27,268 in 2019.

Friday’s gross is up 29 per cent from the fourth-session gross of $3,704,000 in 2020 and up 4 per cent from the session gross of $4,581,000 in 2019.

Total gross through four nights is now $51,407,000 with 148 yearlings to sell tonight in the final session.

Through four sessions, the sale is averaging a record $71,898. That’s up 27 per cent from the 2020 average through four sessions of $56,495 and up 5 per cent from the record fourth-session average of $68,738 in 2019. The median through four days is $47,000. Last year it was $37,000 through four sessions.

“The train is rolling along just like it has been,” said Reid. “Tonight, I thought the energy was very good again. We had new faces come into town. Tonight was where technology takes over a bit – the online bidding ramped up and 17 per cent of the horses sold tonight were sold online. A lot of people were here earlier in the week and did their inspections, then had to go home or go race horses. You got new faces that came in today for the weekend. You have people looking horses for their clients or agents for trainers that are remote or bidding online.

“The live factor here, there was good energy, good crowd and then you put in the online, there’s really no reason you can’t buy the horses. Whether near or far, you can do that.”


Friday’s sale topper was hip 624 Kountry Jon, a Father Patrick colt out of Caddie In Love S sold by Anvil and Lace for $200,000 to Philip Scott of New Jersey.

Scott said deserved to be sold earlier in the sale because of his European pedigree.

“It’s very well known in Europe. It definitely stood out on the fourth day here,” Scott said. “We bought him for our barn with Trond Smedshammer. We had a couple of clients from Europe interested in the horse. First of all, the horse looks incredible and has an incredible pedigree, especially known for Europeans. Not as known over here, but he had Ready Express in the pedigree and it’s just tremendous.

“We were prepared to go to that limit. We kind of thought it would end up a little bit lower, but I’m just glad we got it.

“I would say that the others bidding against me were European trainers. I know a couple of the Swedish trainers were interested in the horse, as well.”

Anvil and Lace’s Beth Yontz said she was excited Kountry Jon went for $200,000.

“I was hoping for six figures, but I didn’t know that we could get there. So, $200,000 was amazing,” she said.

“I knew the Europeans would be on him, simply because of his bloodlines. I was disappointed when they put him on the fourth night, but I’ve talked to Randy Manges many times and if they want a horse they are going to find him – it doesn’t matter what stall, what barn, what consignment, what hip number. So, when we got here and started showing there was a lot of European interest.”

Kountry Jon was one of two yearlings to sell for $100,000 or more during Friday’s session, meaning the total of $100,000+ yearlings through four sessions is 152, which compares to 101 through four nights in 20201, 121 through four nights in 2019 and 124 through four nights in 2018.

Hip 683 American Cruiser, an American Ideal colt out of Lady Captain, sold for $140,000 to Megan Scran, agent for Greg Luther, out of the Brittany Farms consignment.


Preferred Equine continues to lead all consignors in gross sales through four sessions with $7,685,000 earned for 127 sold. Hunterton is second with $7,041,000 for 68 sold. Kentuckiana is third with $6,171,000 for 85 sold. Preferred ($565,000) and Hunterton ($554,000) led all consignors on Friday night.

By average, Concord Stud leads through four days ($186,429), followed by Hanover Shoe Farms ($155,100) and Brittany Farms ($125,429).

Through four sessions, Nancy Takter is still the sale’s leading buyer despite not buying any yearlings on Friday. She has spent $2,907,000 to take home 12 yearlings. Tony Alagna spent $419,000 to buy six yearlings on Friday and jumped over Steve Heimbecker into second place overall with $2,605,000, total, spent on 24 yearlings. Heimbecker has spent $2,342,000, in all, on 19 yearlings.

Tonight’s fifth and final session of the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale will feature 148 yearlings mostly from Ohio and Indiana. It begins tonight at 7 p.m. at Fasig-Tipton.

“Similar to last year, you’re going to have good energy here,” Reid said. “There’s a lot of nice horses, some regional program horses… Downbytheseaside is a regional sire, but has also proven to be a Grand Circuit sire, which is a great thing for the sport.

“It’s going to be a good night. There’s a big day of racing tomorrow and we’ll just look to conclude a very good weekend of the Lexington experience – sales, racing. The weather was beautiful today and I’m excited to come in tomorrow night and start the show.”

For more information about the sale, please visit: http://www.lexingtonselected.com