Warrawee dispersal a bittersweet offering from Preferred’s mixed sale consignment

by Dave Briggs

David Reid is always careful not to highlight particular yearlings his Preferred Equine is selling at any sale because he represents so many clients. But when it comes to this year’s Standardbred Horse Sales Company auction in Harrisburg, PA, Reid does want to single out an important offering from his mixed sale consignment — the dispersal of the mares from Dr. Mike Wilson’s Warrawee Farm in Ontario. Wilson is leaving the breeding business and selling his farm, Reid said.

“My personal opinion is that (Warrawee) should have been Breeders of the Year in Canada a few times,” Reid said of the Rockwood, ON nursery that was named Canadian Breeder of the Year for 2011. “It was a small nursery with 15 mares or less and produced Warrawee Ubeaut ($1.8 million), one of the fastest pacing fillies in the sport in Warrawee Vital (1:47.1) and more… For a nursery of this size, (Wilson has) been a tremendous breeder and probably underappreciated from a Canadian side of view.”

Preferred is selling a sister to Warrawee Ubeaut, Warrawee Vital and Warrawee Needy (1:46.4) (Hip 1028, Warrawee Quick) out of the mare Great Memories, who was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame’s class of 2021.

From the Warrawee dispersal, Preferred is also selling the dams of three Breeders Crown elimination winners: Testing Testing (Hip 1025, Sound Check), Lilbitalexis (Hip 1110, Jolie De Vie) and Queen Of Success (Hip 1152, Cashaway).

Reid said Wilson is, “definitely someone that Preferred Equine has been proud to represent, though to have a dispersal is bittersweet.”

Preferred has a diverse mixed sale consignment led by, “a very strong group of broodmares in foal to the top sires in our sport, led by 10 mares in foal to Walner. Plus, we’re selling a sister to Rocknificent (Hip 1418, Viva La Deo) and we’re selling a sister to Gangster Hanover (Hip 1803, Gyre Hanover).”

The mixed sale starts Thursday (Nov. 11) at Harrisburg and continues through Friday (Nov. 12).

As for yearlings, Reid said Preferred has, “a very strong group overall. We have all the major sires represented – Walner, Captaintreacherous, Muscle Hill, Chapter Seven, Sweet Lou, Always B Miki… We have a good mix of everything. We have a lot of dual-eligible yearlings. We have a couple of tri-eligible yearlings – Massachusetts, Kentucky and their home state.

“We have siblings to good horses, including Rocknificent (Hip 118, Proclamation Deo) who just won the Breeders Crown.

“We’re representing a lot of small breeders, as well as some larger ones, and that’s the beauty of Preferred Equine. We represent a lot of different breeders that have different jurisdictions and different followings, so that’s always enjoyable.”

Last year, at the Standardbred Horse Sale Company auction held in Timonium, MD, Preferred was the leading consignor in the mixed sale with a gross of $5,078,000 for 149 sold. Preferred was also the leading consignor at this year’s Lexington Selected Yearling Sale ($8,128,000 for 134 sold).

As for helping consignors decided whether the Lexington or Harrisburg sale is a better fit for their yearlings, Reid said, “there’s a lot of factors that go into it – sire power, dam power, foaling date, maturity, geographic location of the breeder, sometimes you try to zig when other people zag… there’s no one particular thing, it’s a combination. Some people have a history of selling in the north east at Harrisburg, so it’s really a combo.

“For Preferred clients, we do try to analyze the overall herd and try to place them in the best place possible. It doesn’t always work and we do make mistakes, but we try to go where we have things to our advantage and we’ve got to make that guess back in February or March – people don’t realize how early the process starts.”