A total of 38 lots sold for 500,000gns or more, compared to 22 in 2013.
"The sales grounds have been very busy over the past few days," says Tattersalls marketing director Jimmy George. "It's very good to see such a cross section of buyers here."This is a sale that year after year produces some the world's best racehorses with amazing consistency and in return, it attracts the world's leading buyers."
An even greater attraction to this year’s sale is the launch of the Tattersalls Book 1 £25,000 bonus scheme. Run in place of the Tattersalls Millions race series, the scheme will award a £25,000 bonus to Book 1 graduates (or those that are withdrawn and sell instead at the December Sale) that win any Class 2, 3 or 4 two-year-old maiden in the UK or an ‘open’ two-year-old maiden in Ireland in 2016. It takes just a single payment of £1,000 by the owner to Tattersalls by March 1, 2016, for the horse to remain eligible.
"It's been very well received," says George. "We canvassed the opinions of a lot of trainers, owners and agents and they were very positive, as they have been since it was announced in May. There will be maidens run that offer in excess of £45,000 - once you factor in the effect of Plus 10 as well - which is huge. So we're keen to see the beneficial effect it might have on trade this week."
The Convivial maiden in August at York's Ebor meeting has been widely used as an example but it's one that is worth highlighting again. In winning this year's renewal, Book 1 graduate Beautiful Morning landed her owner Jon Kelly prize-money of £31,125. If the bonus had kicked into play alongside Plus 10 (£7,500), the winner’s share would have risen to close to £64,000.
Yearlings out of Lodge Park's Alluring Park, a Listed-placed Green Desert half-sister to New Approach, have sold for a total of 7,700,000gns at Book 1 since 2010. From a sales standpoint, the most memorable is Al Naamah, who sold for an European record of 5,000,000gns to Al Shaqab Racing in 2013, and is now Group 3-placed. However, the group also includes the 2012 Epsom Oaks heroine Was, who topped the 2010 sale when selling for 1,200,000gns to Demi O'Byrne.
This year's offering is lot 43, a Galileo brother to Was and Al Naamah. Another excellent individual, he has generated plenty of chat around the sales ground - enough to suggest he could be yet another sale-topper out of the mare.
"We have a very strong group of horses," says Lady Carolyn Warren. "We're very lucky that we sell for some wonderful breeders that entrust us with their horses."The team have worked very hard. There's Diego, our head man, and then Shami, who has built up a very good relationship with the Frankel colt. But it's a whole team effort, from the people in the office to those on the stud. They do a fantastic job and take a great pride in their work."
"This is the first time we've sold for Three Chimneys and we're delighted to sell for them," says Warren. "She came over in the summer - she's a really strong, close coupled filly from a lovely family."
"Saeed Mañana has been a tremendous supporter and I should think he'll be a very proud breeder come the end of the week," says Warren. "The Born Something is a lovely mover and the Alsindi is a very powerful colt out of a good two-year-old."
"The Lady Of Everest similar to her sister," says Warren. "Perhaps a little bit bigger with more scope. She's typical of Dubawi with a lovely head and eye. The Brigitta filly is all quality with some stretch to her."
"He's pretty special," says Warren, "and hard to fault. He's a great walker who looks like he'll be a two-year-old but with the scope to go on. He has his father's head. The mare has done it with all levels of stallion."
Of various others, Warren adds: "The two New Approach colts (lots 332 and 352) are both out of strong, close coupled mares, and they are strong, powerful horses who are great movers. The Invincible Spirit - Love Everlasting colt (301) was born at Highclere and been with us right the way through. He's a great walker. The Lawman - So Silk filly (452) is another great walker and from a lovely family, and the Oasis Dream - Gemstone filly (214) looks a real two-year-old."
"The Nathaniels I have seen have size, strength and scope," he says. "They all seem to have a great swing to their walk. As commercial breeders, we're always trying to produce the perfect physical, but we're far too obsessed with selling 'oil paintings' and not racehorses. Obviously the conformation of a potential racehorse is pretty important, but it's a horse's temperament and attitude that really interests me. A racehorse's determination, guts and desire to win is almost more important than anything else.
"Working with the stallions in the breeding shed, I get to know them all pretty well and I love Nathaniel's attitude. He's one of the most honest and generous horses I've ever come across. Look after him properly, show him what you want him to do and I think he'd do anything for you. He was a ball of nervous energy as a racehorse, but also seriously gutsy. He never ran a bad race and ran to an official rating of 127 on five out of his last 6 starts, over 10 or 12f and on soft or good to firm."
"We were lucky enough to buy Legatissimo at this sale two years ago and if this filly is half as good as her, we'll be happy," said MV Magnier. "This family has been very lucky for us - you have Fame And Glory under the second dam - and this is a lovely filly."Legatissimo goes to the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf. She's been a wonderful filly for us this year and stays in training as a four-year-old."
"You've got to be happy that [the price]," said Julian Dollar, general manager of Newsells Park Stud. "She made her value. She's going to a great home - they know how to train daughters out of that mare! It's bittersweet as we'd have loved to have kept her but selling is our modus operandi and everyone knows that."
Lot 17: ch f Dubawi - Wild Wind (Danehill Dancer)
Three Chimneys foray into this market as vendor is successful as John Ferguson signs at 580,000gns for their homebred filly out of Wild Wind.
Foaled in Kentucky, the filly joined Highclere Stud in the summer on the advice of Ed Sackville.
"Ed saw her as a foal and said to us, 'if you sell her, it must be in Europe," says Case Clay of Three Chimneys. "We checked in with Ed again earlier in the year and reiterated that advice, so we shipped her over.
"We're pleased with how she sold and we wish Sheikh Mohammed the best of luck with her."
Three Chimneys paid a sale-topping €1,175,000 for Wild Wind at the 2012 Arqana December Sale. The daughter of Danehill Dancer was a smart filly for Aidan O'Brien, winning the Listed Vincent O'Brien Ruby Stakes and running placed at Group 3 level. However, she also boasts an excellent pedigree as a great-granddaughter of Miesque via Monevassia, the dam of Rumplestiltskin.
Lot 23: b c Frankel - You'll Be Mine (Kingmambo)
First Frankel through the ring is knocked down for 190,000gns to Mouse O'Ryan, acting on behalf of the vendor.
"She was bred by Christopher Hanbury of Triermore Stud," said Peter Stanley of New England Stud. "He's keen to expand more in the Flat and has assembled a very nice broodmare band."She's a very straightforward filly - a queen - with a lovely outlook."
"He's probably closer to Was [in looks] than any of the others," said Damian Burns of Lodge Park Stud following the sale. "He's always had strength but with the quality of Was."The mare clicks really well with the stallion. We have a full sister at home who I would say is unlikely to be seen here next year."
"He's for a long-standing existing client - no trainer decided yet but he'll stay in Britain," said Goff. "He's a well-made, very attractive son of Dubawi with a lovely back pedigree."
"The filly was a queen to be around - she's lovely to look at," said David Egan of Corduff Stud. "And of course Dubawi is magic. Michael buys a nice horse and I'm thrilled he bought her. There were a lot of good underbidders as well."
"Joss bought her for us and she's been very kind to us," said Egan. "It's a lovely Charles Wilson family. I'd worked for Jonabell Farm in Kentucky so I knew the family well - [third dam] Beau Gris was there."
"We like Dubawi and it looks to us a nice cross," he said. "We're putting our priorities into fillies - like the Frankel filly we bought last week [out of Alexander Goldrun]. This filly will stay in Europe, but we won't decide exactly where any of the yearlings are going until after the sales, when we'll get everyone together and sit down."We missed out on a couple this morning - it's tough if you want to join the big boys - and the team had to be very disciplined. We hoped we'd get one, and we did."On breeding in China he added: "For now we're concentrating all our energy on Europe, the US and Australia, but in the future we'll think about moving some of the band to China."
"I wasn't expecting that," said Liam Norris following the sale. "He was just a really lovely foal. He's by a tremendous stallion. I love foals that walk well and he did. He's totally uncomplicated, has never taken a lame step in his life and we were excited to bring him here."
"We'll decide who will train him later on but he's for a partnership between Coolmore and Mayfair Speculators," said Doyle. "We bought one here last year and one this morning with the China Horse Club - that's the first time we've partnered with them. We've bought more at Arqana in the last two years. Andre Fabre and Nicolas Clement train for them in France."We're looking for nice colts and fillies with good pedigrees. They have some lovely farms in South Africa and if they're good enough, they could always go back there later on.'