Strong middle market at Karaka Premier

Day 2 of the Karaka Premier Sale outstripped Day 1 as a predominantly international buying bench competed for the 250 yearlings on offer.

From the outset of selling on Tuesday morning, a renewed strength was tangible at Karaka.  Turnover at the end of two sessions was $65.57 million for the 375 lots that changed hands.  Trade fell just short of last year’s figure of $65.72 million.

Remarkably, the median of $140,000 exceeded the 2010 figure to become NZ Bloodstock’s second highest on record, indicating the strength of the middle market.

The final average of $174,864 was down just 4% on last year.  The clearance rate of 79% was less than a point shy of last year’s result.

Top price on Day 2 was $875,000 paid by David Ellis for the Red Ransom half-brother to NZ based Group 1 filly King’s Rose (Redoute’s Choice).  “He is a terrific colt and, given he performs on the track, would make a great stud prospect,” Ellis noted.  “We had to fight off David Hayes and Chris Waller and I’m thrilled that he will be staying in New Zealand.”

The $800,000 top price from Day 1 was matched early in the day by BBA Ireland for Cambridge Stud’s Zabeel filly from Jesmond’s Gift.

Mark Kavanagh also set the tone for the day paying $700,000 for a Zabeel filly and $540,000 for an Iffraaj colt in the first hour.  

NZ Bloodstock Co-Managing Director Petrea Vela said there was a distinct increase in strength on Tuesday.  “The competition was intense and it never seemed to let up. To post the second highest median on record is an incredible result and really demonstrates the firepower at the heart of the middle market.

“We had no million dollar lots this year yet we are less than $150,000 away from last year’s aggregate and less than 4% down on average, with our clearance rate holding up extremely well.  It’s a fantastic result for the industry.”

Connolly Bloodstock led the buyer list with 16 purchases for $5.05 million.  Top price was $650,000 for the Encosta de Lago half-sister to Hong Kong star Green Birdie.  “Overall I think the sale has been very competitive,” Rick Connolly said on Tuesday evening.  “The line up of yearlings was a little stronger on pedigree and type today.  I’m thrilled with the horses we’re taking home.”

Cambridge Stud held off a challenge from Windsor Park Stud for top vendor with 43 yearlings sold for $10.28 million.  Belvedere Farm was the leading vendor by average with his four selling at $280,000.  Zabeel headed the sires tables with 27 entries sold at an average of $346,111.  

The National Sale will continue on Wednesday with the three-day Select Sale followed by the two-day Festival Sale.