By Sarah Mace
The New York-bred juvenile class of 2023 kicked off the two-year-old auction season in style this week at the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company’s March Sale. In the middle session of the expanded three-day sale, Katsumi Yoshida’s agent Shingo Hashimoto went to $1,050,000 to purchase Hip 489, a dark bay or brown colt by the late Champion Arrogate who is a full brother to dual Grade 1 winner and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile runner-up Cave Rock. The colt, bred by Kathleen Schweizer and foaled on April 17, 2021 at Longford Farm in Elmira, New York, was the third top-seller of the entire sale, which ran Monday through Wednesday, March 20 through March 22. The Arrogate colt previously set a new record price of $700,000 in 2022 when he topped the Fasig-Tipton New York-Bred Yearlings Sale.
New York-bred juveniles as a group had a successful run at this renewal of OBS March. Specifically, 42 individuals sold of 54 offered (including nine private sales on the grounds) for an RNA rate of 22.2%, which was on par with the 21.4% buyback percentage of the overall sale. The New York-bred average price topped six figures at $117,000, and the median was a solid $70,000. The sale as a whole posted an average price of $154,588 with a $75,000 median. As has been the case in recent years, there was plenty of action at the top end. Seven New Yorkers brought $200,000 and up, and the top three sellers, all colts, fetched $340,000 and up. The top filly, also by Arrogate, sold for $250,000.
The pedigree page of the seven-figure Arrogate colt really pops. His dam is Georgie’s Angel, dam of three other winners besides 2022 juvenile standout Cave Rock. The Kentucky-bred daughter of Bellamy Road is a graded stakes winner in her own right and was precocious, winning the 2011 Grade 3 Schuylerville Stakes at Saratoga. Georgie’s Angel’s is also a half-sister to graded winner Lawn Ranger. The sale colt’s third dam is a multiple stakes winner in Canada and is a multiple stakes producer. Georgie’s Angel was purchased by Longford Farm with the sale colt in utero for $75,000 at the 2020 Keeneland November Sale. She currently has a yearling filly by Improbable and was bred in 2022 to Connect.
Offered by Tom McCrocklin, Agent II, the topper turned in a :21 1/5 quarter-mile breeze, which McCrocklin called outstanding. Having purchased the colt at the Fasig-Tipton Saratoga New York-bred yearling sale on behalf of Champion Equine shortly after Cave Rock broke his maiden impressively at Del Mar, he said in a featured Blood-Horse video before OBS, “We thought he was the standout horse of the entire [New York-bred] sale.” McCrocklin was also bullish on the colt’s prospects before the OBS bidding began. “We just feel like we’re bringing one of the better horses to this sale, and we hope the interest is high and we’ll see how it goes.” After the fact, though, he confessed to nerves, telling the Blood-Horse, “It was just pressure. I’m not supposed to feel the pressure when you’re selling a $700,000 pinhook, I’m supposed to be cold as ice, but I’m not.” The colt will be relocated to Japan. (Breeze video walking video).
The second-top New York-bred seller of the group was Hip 247, a speedy New York-bred Frosted colt consigned by Grade One Investments LLC, Agent I, and purchased Monday by Three Amigos for $475,000 after breezing an eighth in :09 4/5. The dark bay or brown colt was bred by Jeff Treadway and foaled at James Bond’s Song Hill Thoroughbreds, LLC on April 5, 2021. His dam Ananda, an unraced daughter of Scat Daddy, is a full-sister to multiple graded stakes winner Daddy Nose Best, who earned over $900,000. From two foals to start, Ananda has already produced a stakes performer and winner. The colt’s third dam is multiple graded winner Follow the Money.
A veteran of the sales ring and, as it turned out, a pinhooking coup, the Frosted colt first RNA’d as a short yearling at Fasig-Tipton Kentucky winter mixed sale on a $19,000 bid. Later in 2022, at the Keeneland September yearling sale, he went to Ford Fugate for $50,000 before going on to OBS triumph. (Breeze video walking video)
Completing the trio of top New York-bred juvenile colts OBS was Hip 337, a bay from Vino Rosso’s first crop who was bred in partnership by Sequel Thoroughbreds LLC, Lakland Farm and Mark Toothaker, and foaled on February 16, 2021 at Sequel Stallions. After breezing a panel under tack in :10 2/5 for Sequel Bloodstock, Agent III, he was purchased by trainer Mike Maker for $340,000. (Under tack video)
The colt is the first foal out of Call to Service, a placed Kentucky-bred daughter of To Honor and Serve who was purchased by Sequel’s Becky Thomas at the 2020 Keeneland November sale for $110,000. The mare resold for $350,000 at the 2022 Keeneland January sale to Coteau Grove Farms. Out of stakes performer Game for More, Call to Service is a half-sister to multiple graded stakes winner Isotherm, and to graded stakes performers Gio Game and Giant Game. Another successful pinhook, the Vino Rosso colt brought $70,000 from Oldham Bloodstock at the Fasig-Tipton New York-bred yearling sale in Saratoga last year, where Sequel New York was the consignor.
The star filly of the group of OBS March New Yorkers was Hip 94, a gray/roan filly by Arrogate, bred in partnership by Hidden Lake Farm, LLC and 3C Stables, LLC and selling to Mike Ryan, Agent, for $250,000. She sold in Monday’s opening session after breezing an eighth in :10 1/5 seconds under tack. Another graduate of the Fasig-Tipton New York-bred yearling sale at Saratoga, the Arrogate filly fetched $170,000 from OBS consignor Cary Frommer from the RFHF Bloodstock consignment in August. (Under Tack Video)
Foaled on March 11, 2021 at Hidden Lake Farm, the filly is out of Summer Shade, a winning daughter of Stephen Got Even who has produced a pair of winners, including stakes performer Harmon. Out of stakes-placed Summer Delight, Summer Shade is a half-sister to multiple graded winner Hot Summer (who has produced a stakes horse), and two more stakes performers. Summer Shade was purchased by Hidden Lake Farm/Halmar for just $22,000 at the 2016 Keeneland November sale and currently has a yearling filly by Vekoma. She was bred in 2022 to American Pharoah.
The next dates to circle on the calendar for juvenile sales action are April 25-28, when the OBS Spring Sale of Two-Year-Olds in Training will be held in Ocala, FL.