Financial fireworks at Florida 2YO Sale

The Ocala Breeders March 2YO Sale concluded its two-day run with a spectacular show of financial fireworks in Florida on Wednesday.

A War Front colt commanded $800,000 to top the auction ahead of a Tiz Wonderful colt ($525,000), Leroidesanimaux colt ($490,000) and Empire Maker filly ($485,000).

The final results for the auction were described by OBS director Tod Wojciechowski as “crazy good” topped by turnover of $24.81 million which was equal to the 2011 figure despite 25% less lots.

The average price of $138,656 and median price of $105,000 increased 33% and 50%, respectively.  The median was a record for the auction, surpassing the former mark of $100,000 in 2008.  The overall clearance rate improved 1 point to 75%.

“The buyers stepped up and brought some quality horses here this year,” Wojciechowski said.  “A number of times this the week we heard comments from buyers saying this was as solid a group of horses as they’d seen in a while.  Certainly there is some sort of sense that the economy is better and there obviously also is a demand for racehorses.”

The sleek War Front colt was purchased by Frank Fletcher of Arkansas who also bought the Empire Maker filly that topped Day 1.  The Kentucky-bred colt is the first foal out of the unraced Horse Chestnut mare Henna.  She is a half sister to G1 King’s Bishop winner Pomeroy (Boundary).  He breezed 200m in 10 seconds at the under tack show.

Fletcher gave Hill ‘n’ Dale Farm director Donato Lanni the credit for selecting the Claiborne Farm bred colt.  “Claiborne has bred a lot of nice horses over the years,” Lanni explained.  “War Front is the hot horse at Claiborne.  He’s a good stallion and he produces really good racehorses.”