Bidding frenzy opens Keeneland November Sale

The Keeneland November breeding stock suction began with a bidding frenzy on Tuesday.  A total of 147 lots grossed $63.27 million on Day 1 and the average jumped 102% to $430,452.

Group 1 winner Christmas Kid commanded $4.20 million to the bid of Ashford Stud’s Aisling Duignan.  The Lemon Drop Kid mare produced an Elusive Quality colt earlier this year and she is in foal to Bernardini.

Christmas Kid is the highest-priced horse sold at the Keeneland November sale since 2007.  The mare will most likely go to Ireland and be bred to Galileo.

Benjamin Leon of Besilu Stables bought the second and third lots on the leader-board.

He paid $3 million for G2 winner Quiet Giant and $2.6 million for a Medaglia d’Oro weanling filly.  Both are out of the stakes-winning Quiet American mare Quiet Dance and are half sisters to 2005 Horse of the Year Saint Liam (Saint Ballado).

The previous record for a weanling filly at the Keeneland November auction was $2.40 million for Isla Canela (Gone West) in 2006.

Leon, a South Florida healthcare magnate who has been a major buyer at recent yearlings sales, was the first session’s biggest spender.  He paid $11.4 million for six horses.

Eclipse Award winner Frank Stronach was the second-biggest spender buying four lots for $6.20 million under his Adena Springs banner.

Among his buys was a Henrythenavigator half-sister to Zenyatta for $1.50 million.  She was offered by Rick Jamieson of Gilgai Farm in Australia.  He still owns a yearling half sister to Zenyatta who is also by Henrythenavigator.

Jamieson bred Black Caviar and runs nearly 100 mares at his Victorian based nursery including the world champion’s dam Helsinge.

The Keeneland November sale continues through to November 17.