WITH two seven-figure yearlings and increases across-the-board, last year's renewal of the Goffs Orby Sale was a positive affair that was praised for its depth of buyers, both international and domestic.
Led by a €1.5 million Galileo colt who was sold to MV Magnier, the aggregate rose by 11 per cent to €38,450,500 for 352 (87%) yearlings sold. The average increased eight per cent to €109,234 while the median rose 23 per cent to €70,000, all of which prompted Goffs CEO Henry Beeby to comment: “Ireland’s best” was our cry as we headed towards Orby 14 and I am adamant that this was not just an idle boast or marketing line as we were sure our vendors had given us unprecedented support to help us compile a catalogue that truly featured 450 of the best Irish yearlings on the market this year. That view was vindicated by our buyers who contrived to return a stunning trade over the two days that has allowed us to post a much improved set of statistics which build on two very good years. Every level of the market has grown with more yearlings realising over €100,000, over €250,000, over €500,000 and, of course our two millionaires."
This year, with the exploits of recent Orby graduates Covert Love, Simple Verse, Ribchester and Arod still fresh in the mind, Goffs offer buyers an increased catalogue of 487 yearlings. The group contains those by the usual powerful array of international stallions, including Galileo (14 yearlings), Redoute's Choice (three yearlings) and Invincible Spirit (14 yearlings), but adding further allure are the presence of six yearlings from the first crop of Frankel. The first - lot 24 - is a daughter of champion Alexander Goldrun and is widely tipped to be the star of the sextet.
"She was a very obvious filly," said Wallace. "Frankel needs no explanation and being out of a mare like that, she is always going to hold value. Coupled with her physical attributes, she is an elite filly."
Bred by Noel O'Callaghan and offered by his Mountarmstrong Stud, the filly is the third foal out of Alexander Goldrun, the champion older mare in Europe and Ireland of 2005. Trained by Jim Bolger, Alexander Goldrun won five Group 1 races including the Cathay Pacific Hong Kong Cup and two renewals of the Pretty Polly Stakes. The daughter of Gold Away is a half-sister to Poule d'Essai des Poulains runner-up and sire Medecis and from the further family of Group 1 winners Guadalupe and Royal Rebel.
"She looks like a bullet!" said Tony Nerses. "She's got the page to become a foundation mare for the stud [Blue Diamond Stud] - we've bought her with a view to the long term. She's really strong and has plenty of quality. Hopefully she's another Princess Noor!"
Nerses added: "Her breeders, Paget Bloodstock, have been very lucky for us. I bought Authorized from him as a foal and he also sold [Group 3 winner] Green Destiny and [stakes producer] Majestic Sakeena to me. Until today, they were the only three I'd bought off him!"
"He's got size, scope and strength," said Varian. "He's out of a very good racemare and by a sire that gets plenty of fast and precocious types. He looks a racehorse."
"She has a wonderful pedigree, it's a tremendous Gerald Leigh family," said Burke. "That was a real attraction but she did everything right and the sire's gone the right way - he's come up with some real good horses since including I'm A Chatterbox, one of the best fillies right now in America."
"He's a lovely horse - the best I've seen by the sire - who will go to Ed Walker," said Donald. "He was the second of two we had on the list today for this particular client - we were underbidder on the other one, the Exceed And Excel colt who sold to Roger Varian."
"She's a racy filly bred on the magic Galileo - Danehill cross," said Barberini. "It's actually the first time the mare has been to Galileo. She has a lot of residual value as a half-sister to a Dewhurst Stakes winner."She'll go to Ballyhane to be broken and a trainer will be decided at a later date."
"He'll stay in Europe," said Flanagan. "He's out of a two-year-old winner and is a full brother to a good horse who ran second in the Derby. He's a late foal [April 25] but a very good physical."
Of today's trade, Flanagan added: "It feels good, there's definitely a good buzz about the place. I think Goffs have done a great job in putting together a catalogue of good horses. The right people are here and they seem to be bidding, so you'd have to say it's a good sale."
"We respect Sovereign Debt and this is a straightforward filly with a big pedigree," said Craig. "It helps that the one we bought here last year [Juliette Fair] was Listed-placed today."I'm not walking around looking for Northern Dancer-line yearlings. We're in desperate need of outcross pedigrees - we're looking for something fast but that can also be bred back to those Northern Dancer-line stallions."