With the wildcard bumper winner Noble Yeats (Ire) (Yeats Ire) failing to make his 300,000gns reserve, the first session of the Tattersalls February Sale had a more regular top lot in the breeding prospect Beautiful Illusion (Ire) (Shamardal), who was the sole horse to break the six-figure barrier during the first day at 120,000gns.
Sold by her breeder Godolphin as lot 194, the well-bred 4-year-old was initially trained by Charlie Appleby to win at Wolverhampton and Chelmsford last year. The daughter of G3 Sweet Solera S. winner Long Lashes (Rock Hard Ten), herself a half-sister to GI Santa Anita H. winner Combatant (Scat Daddy), was bought by Mark McStay of Avenue Bloodstock on behalf of an undisclosed client.
“She is the daughter of a very good racemare, whom I remember from my time at Godolphin, and she is by a world-class sire in Shamardal. She had ability herself and achieved a good rating of 89,” said McStay.
“I saw her ten days ago at Moulton Paddocks, Godolphin kindly facilitated a visit. She is a good-walking filly, and she was a stand-out today on paper and physically.”
Ninety withdrawals for the first day of the sale, which was held online owing to the continued lockdown in Britain, meant that 167 lots came under the hammer, albeit from afar. A respectable halfway aggregate of 1,163,500gns was accrued from the 118 sold for a clearance rate of 71%. The average dropped by 22% to 9,861gns but the median improved by 15% to 5,750gns.
The Godolphin draft accounted for five of the top ten lots of the day, with the second highest-priced filly of the sale, also by Shamardal, about to head to Tally-Ho Stud in Ireland after being bought by Tony O’Callaghan for 65,000gns.
Symbol Of Love (lot 185) is a 4-year-old half-sister to listed winner Firebird Song (Ire) (Invincible Spirit Ire) and she will be covered for the first time by Kodiac (GB), emulating the cross represented by dual Group 1-winning sprinter Hello Youmzain (Fr).
O’Callaghan said, “Bidding was easy online, but that was the only bid we had. She is for Kodiac; she is by Shamardal and they go well together. She has a good page and looks a nice filly.”
Symbol Of Love shares her Group 3-winning grandam Magna Graecia (Ire) (Warning GB) with Darley stallion Territories (Ire) and is inbred 3×4 to Helen Street (GB) (Troy GB), the dam of Street Cry (Ire) and grandam of Shamardal.
Three lots later, O’Callaghan added a daughter of Territories to the day’s purchases when going to 35,000gns for French Braid (GB) (lot 188), also from Godolphin. The unraced 3-year-old is a half-sister to dual Group 3 winner Breathtaking Look (GB) (Bated Breath GB), who sold for 400,000gns to Katsumi Yoshida of Northern Farm at the most recent Tattersalls December sale.
Leading the in-foal mares was lot 153, the Lordship Stud-bred Swiss Kiss (GB) (Dansili GB), who was sold carrying to Acclamation (GB), by whom she has already produced the winner Continental (GB), for 48,000gns.
The 10-year-old mare, who was covered on May 22, was bought by Canice Farrell of Knockatrina Stud. She said: “I’m chuffed. It’s a good pedigree, she is a good-walking mare, she has a commercial cover and the only negative is that she is a bit late. I hope to send her to either Invincible Spirit or Kodiac.”
Peter Swann’s Cool Silk Partnership bought three mares to visit his former Group-winning representatives Sands Of Mali (Fr) and Prince Of Lir (Ire) at Ballyhane Stud.
They included the 6-year-old Jumeirah Street (Street Cry Ire), who has a Brazen Beau (Aus) yearling filly and was sold in foal to Harry Angel (Ire) for 28,000gns.
“The bidding has been easy—it’s trying to keep the children entertained that is difficult,” said agent Matt Coleman on the telephone from his home after buying lot 71 on the owner’s behalf. “Peter Swann has some breeding rights in the stallions so these mares have been bought for them.”
Also among the leading purchasers of the day was Julie Wood, a long-time successful owner with Richard Hannon who bought three yearlings under her Woodstock banner. All three were consigned by Hazelwood Bloodstock and the trio was comprised of a colt and a filly from the first crop of Cracksman (GB) as well as a filly by Golden Horn (GB). The latter (lot 122), bought for 25,000gns, is a daughter of the listed winner Lady Heidi (GB) (High Chaparral Ire), who has already produced a treble winner by another son of Cape Cross (Ire) in Sea The Stars (Ire).
The Cracksman colt (lot 99) is out of the Australian Group 2 winner Tamaanee (Aus) (Teofilo Ire), whose dam is a half-sister to leading sire I Am Invincible (Aus). He was bought for 20,000gns and the filly, the second foal of listed winner Mademoiselle Marie (Fr) (Evasive GB) (lot 123), for 26,000gns.
“I have been thinking about this all week and it was strange this morning sitting at home getting nervous before bidding,” said Wood. “But you look into the screen and it feels just like you are in the ring. It is exciting now I have bought them, we can make plans.”
She continued, “They have all been bought to race and will go to Charlock Stud now and then into training with Richard Hannon.”
The second and final session of the February Sale gets underway on Friday at 10am.