Major surge in business at Keeneland November Sale

Keeneland’s November Sale recorded a major surge in business during its 11 sessions that finished on Thursday.

Revenue reached $208.51 million with a 62% increase in average to $81,641 and a 41% increase in the median to $24,000.  The clearance rate was up three points to 80%.

Dispersals of the late Edward P. Evans and Prince Saud bin Khaled were instrumental in the huge upswings at Lexington

Evans owned Spring Hill Farm and its draft amassed $55.82 million.  In addition, 50 Spring Hill lots made $6.52 million at the Keeneland September yearling sale.

Its total turnover of $62.34 million broke the previous North America dispersal record held by the Newstead Farm Trust at $46.98 million in 1985.

Prince Khaled’s Palides Investments consignment included Royal Delta who captured the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic four days before she went through the sale ring.  She was sold as a racing or broodmare prospect for $8.50 million.

“The dispersals were a phenomenal successes,” Keeneland director Geoffrey Russell said.  “When you sell collectors’ items, you get collectors’ prices.”

Florida health care magnate Benjamin Leon, who purchased Royal Delta in the name of his Besilu Stables, was the auction’s biggest spender.  He spent $22.40 million for nine horses.  He said Royal Delta (Empire Maker) will stay in training.

Leon’s purchases also included a $2.60 million Medaglia d’Oro – Quiet Dance filly that established a record for a weanling of her sex sold at public auction in North America.

Lane’s End set a Keeneland vendor record with $66.22 million in sales for 371 lots.

There were 23 horses that brought prices of $1 million or more.  North American buyers purchased 18 of them.

The November Sale also attracted a strong international group of buyers from Australia, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, and South America.  “They were here to buy horses at the top end,” Russell added.  “But they just weren’t able to afford them.

“It shows there’s strength back in the domestic market,” Russell continued.  “There has been a hesitation in North America for the last couple years to get involved in long-term investments.  The fact that the majority of million dollar mares are staying here is very good for our industry.”