They were having so much fun at the Keeneland Sales Pavilion on Thursday that the buyers decided to double their fun. Not once, but twice, did buyers plunge deep into their pocket books to find $1 million to purchase two yearlings at the September Yearling Sale.
The first one to break the barrier was a filly consigned by Airdrie Stud and owner Brereton C. Jones. The year-old girl, by the world’s most popular sire in Tapit and out of the Airdrie mare Believe You Can, was purchased for $1 million by Don Alberto Corporation.
Believe You Can, who is by the Airdrie Stud stallion Proud Citizen, captured the Kentucky Oaks for the Jones family and the farm.
“First of all, she’s a Tapit,” said Liliana Solari, of Don Alberto. “We had Proud Citizen at our farm in Chile. He was a wonderful horse and he sired very good fillies and colts. (This filly) had very nice lines — not too long, not too strong, but nice lines. So we want to have good horses (from) her.”
Bret Jones, the son of the former Governor and now closely aligned with all the farm’s operations, was thrilled with the outcome, as well. “All the smart people have told us that the filly looks exactly like all the really good Tapits,” he said. “She is not a great big, robust filly, but she is a well put-together filly and gives you the feeling she is going to give everything she has on the race track.”
The second $1 Million purchase was another filly, from the last crop of the late and great Scat Daddy. The filly was consigned by Gainesway Farm, as agent, and is out of the stakes-placed Ghostzapper mare, Beloveda. That one is a half-sister to Grade 3 winner Golden Mystery.
Kerri Radcliffe Bloodstock bought the filly. “This was my favorite horse in the whole sale,” said Radcliffe. “I saw her on Sunday and I knew I wasn’t going home without her. In my eyes, she is the best horse in the sale. She is a queen and hopefully she will be in the Queen Mary Stakes (Group 2 at Royal Ascot) next year.”
The sales team at Gainesway was thrilled, as expected. “(The filly) rose to the occasion here,” said Michael Hernon, who is the Farm’s Director of Sales. “She was shown over 220 times; she was just as strong at the end. And, she came along really well, I’d say in the last six weeks. She attracted all the top buyers, as she deserved to do. We think she’s a Roy Ascot filly. There was a lot of across-the-board interest from major buyers. And, you know the cream rises to the top. We think she’s a really good horse, and we’re delighted with the result.”