A year ago, Fasig-Tipton touted its’ new July Horses of Racing Age Sale a huge success. And, it was. Until this year came along. Then, after the closing hammer rang down, the 2016 year paled in comparison.
On Monday night, Fasig-Tipton sold 84 Thoroughbreds for a total of $8,083,000. That amounts to an average of $96,226 per horse that sold. The median price was $56,000. Those numbers swamped the 2016 totals, when the sales agency was able to sell 72 head for a total of $5,048,500. Last year’s average paled in comparison to this year, when it was $70,118. The median, a year ago, was $42,000.
“We saw across the board gains in all categories,” said Bayne Welker, Fasig-Tipton’s Vice President of Sales. “The clearance rate was high and there was a strong demand for the ready to go horse with good form.”
In total, nine horses sold for a price of $225,000 or higher. Seven horses sold for $275,000 or higher. Four horses sold for $375,000 or higher. And, three sold for $525,000 or higher.
The sales topper was Distinta, Hip 423, who brought a final tally of $600,000. Consigned by the Taylor Made Sales Agency, the 5-year-old mare was purchased by Medallion Racing. Distinta, who is out of the unraced Storm Cat mare Miss Kitty, is by Belmont Stakes and Travers Stakes winner Summer Bird. And, despite the fact that her mother didn’t race and she is the only black type winner that her mother has thrown to date, Distinta has both a dazzling race record and a pedigree to match.
This year alone, at the ripe old age of 5, Distinta has already won the Grade 2 Inside Information Stakes at Gulfstream Park and has been second twice, including the Grade 2 Princess Rooney Stakes, where she was second to Curlin’s Approval. In addition to she ran third to Curlin’s Approval in the Grade 3 Hurricane Bertie Stakes. For her racing career, she has now earned over $346,000.
At one point in time, the auctioneer encouraged the bidders to get involved in trying to buy a horse that very well may be headed to the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint.
But what makes Distinta just as attractive is her possible career to come, as a broodmare. Her female family has already produced the likes of Dr. Fager, Great Above, Ta Wee, Entropy, Tweak, Gold Dollar, and Purim.
The sale’s second highest price was $585,000, which Mike and Meg Levy and their Bluewater Sales Agency spent to halter the classy 3-year-old filly Adorable Miss, whom we highlighted in our sales preview. The Kitten’s Joy filly was just the third horse into the ring, and she lit up the tote board quickly. And, she was expected to do so after winning the Honey Ryder Stakes at Gulfstream Park earlier this year and then capturing the G3 Martha Washington Stakes in South Florida on the 4th of July. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Adorable Miss is now 3-for-3 at Gulfstream Park. Her only loss this year was a third place finish in the Penn Oaks, on the grass.
Adorable Miss has a full sister, Noble Beauty, who won the G3 Pucker Up Stakes at Arlington Park last year. She was also second in the G3 Commonwealth Oaksat Laurel, the Honey Ryder Stakes at Gulfstream, and the G3 Regret Stakes at Churchill Downs.
The other filly that brought over $500,000 on Monday night was Happy Mesa, who was purchased by Out of This World Racing for $525,000. The daughter of Sky Mesa won the Selima Stakes at Laurel as a 2-year-old, and has come right back this year as a 3YO to win the Hilltop Stakes at Pimlico and run second in the Sanibel Island Stakes at Gulfstream Park. She has won nearly $170,000 already.
Happy Mesa comes from the same female family as Winning Colors, who is one of only three fillies to ever win the Kentucky Derby. It is also the female family of Chef’s Crown, who was a champion that won over $2.1 million at the track.
Both Happy Mesa and Adorable Miss were consigned to the sale by Elite Sales, who was started by Bradley Weisbord and Liz Crowe. This was their first public auction where the agency had a consignment.