Gee, what a lot they got

The 2008 Emperors Ready To Run Sale turned over an incredible all-time record of R25,85million at the TBA Sales Complex, Gosforth Park, on Sunday.

The 2008 Emperors Ready To Run Sale turned over an incredible all-time record of R25,85million at the TBA Sales Complex, Gosforth Park, on Sunday.

It was another terrific year for BloodStock South Africa.

Mick Goss of Summerhill Stud, who consigned the biggest proportion of the 166-lot catalogue, said: "The sale produced awesome results and delivered ample testimony to the confidence that buyers have in the South African racing and breeding industries. We are extremely pleased.''

The staggering one-day aggregate is 48,3percent up on the record figure of last year and the average of R174622 is up 38,2percent.

The highest price of R2,2million was paid by Basil Marcus Racing Stables for Lot 121, Lady's Light, a daughter of international boom sire Rock of Gibraltar.

Second-highest price was paid by trainer Mike Azzie and partners for Insasa (Lot 26), a filly by another international sire, the sensation Galileo.

Athlete Oscar Pistorius is a member of the syndicate that purchased Insasa. Oscar's sole purchase, Watchful (Lot 7, R200000), will also be going into training with Azzie.

"I learnt to love racing through my association with the Azzie family and I can't wait for them to run,'' Pistorius said.

BloodStock SA chief executive Jan Naude said: "The presence of several top imported lots was a factor that gave the sale a boost, but even without them the aggregate would have been up on last year.''

BSA sales manager Caroline Simpson added: "Over the last few years a big buzz has been created around the Ready To Run Sale, from the breeze-up gallops to the cocktail party to the big race day that includes the exclusive Emperors Palace Ready To Run Sweepstakes which is expected to have prize money of at least R1,5million next year.''

"Importantly Summerhill Stud's six-cheque payment scheme made purchases affordable for everyone. Most of the other vendors followed suit, which brought regular buyers back to the sale while new clients came on board too.''

Basil Marcus was the top buyer at the sale by aggregate. The top trainer and his clients Denis and Gael Evans invested R3,12million at an average of R520000 for six foals. This average was marginally bettered by trainer Charles Laird (R540000, 4 lots), which made him the top buyer by average.

Summerhill's Kahal, with 17 two-year-olds sold for R2,86million, was the top sire by aggregate, followed by his Mooi River stablemate Muhtafal with R2,81million for 11 lots.

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