After being relocated to Doncaster in 2021, Arqana’s Breeze Up made its big comeback in Deauville. This selection sale, where 123 2-year-old horses were presented, was full of surprises. Starting with the number of American horses in the catalogue. Then, among the leading European stallions, less top-of-the-range sires did well, seeing their offspring send the auctions soaring.
The rays of the sun and the beautiful foals illuminated the Élie de Brignac establishment ©Zuzanna Lupa
After two years of disruption linked to the pandemic, the Breeze Up Arqana, which had been relocated to Doncaster in England, made its grand return to Deauville lands. The canters took place on Thursday afternoon on the grass of the straight line “opposite” the racecourse. On Friday the auctions took place in the usual Élie de Brignac establishment. A total of 123 colts and fillies completed timed 400-metre breezes before stepping into the ring. Of these 123 2-year-old horses, 103 found buyers (83%) for a cumulative turnover of 13.5 million euros. The average price is slightly down from last year, reaching 131,000 euros, compared to 140,000 in 2021.
A man will undoubtedly have marked the session, he is English and his name is Oliver Saint Lawrence. This broker won “only” two lots, but he did not amuse the gallery, by winning the two top prices, at 550,000 and 520,000 euros on behalf of an owner from Bahrain. Before the start, few would have said that the top price was going to be a product of Zoffany. And yet, it is lot 148, a colt by the stallion Coolmore who died at the start of 2021, which displayed the greatest number on the screen. Impressive during his breeze, the colt will join England and the stable of Roger Varian. The second top will also cross the Channel, and will be driven by Charles Hills. This son of Siyouni is the nephew of the excellent sprinters Mecca’s Angel and Markaz.
Another highlight of the sale is an unprecedented number of American horses in the catalogue. Lot 70, a son of More Than Ready concluded the sale on the podium of the most expensive foals, raising the auction to €450,000. It is Michael Donohoe from BBA Ireland who signed the voucher, indicating that he thinks he has found a colt capable of running on grass and dirt, possibly with the Middle East as his base. Almost unknown in France, the American stallion Good Magic whose first offspring are 2 years old, saw two of its offspring impress, being sold for €280,000, one at Marco Bozzi and the other to Kerri Radcliffe for Amo Racing. The long-awaited Triple Crown winner Justify featured one of his sons being bought by the top coach in the Emirates, Satish Seemar for the sum of 200,000 euros all round.
On reading the catalogue, the names of top-notch stallions followed one after the other. However, several sires offered at prices below €30,000 have seen their offspring send the auctions soaring. The most telling example remains Expert Eye. In the shadow of the stars frankel and Kingman at Banstead Manor, the son ofAcclamation which is offered at £10,000 the mating saw its 3 foals sold for 155,000, 160,000 and 240,000€. Very popular stallion, Sea The Moon stud him for £25,000 at Lawades Stud, and his 5 foals sold for a total of over €750,000, including one for €350,000. The young stallion Cracksman (£17,500 per mating) saw his only foal in the catalog fetch €420,000, and will join the stalls of Christophe Clement to USA. For the record, master Bernard of Reviers (the auctioneer) had a keen eye to see down the hall Stephen Hillen arrive to place his bid, and thus leave with the colt. Finally the Coolmores Sioux Nation and U.S. Navy Flag each had a foal worth more than €230,000.
The colts and fillies were timed over a stretch of 400 meters long during their breezes. The best time is to be credited to a son of Dabirsim, lot 30 which covered the distance in 23.156 seconds, while lot 90 is last in the standings, posting a time of 30.829 seconds, 7 more than its counterpart. Surprisingly, the fastest was acquired by Pierre Pilarsky for €35,000 while the slowest, a son of Sea The Stars was bought from him for €100,000 by Charles Gordon Watson. The Italian Broker Marco Bozzi was the most active buyer of the sale, acquiring 7 foals for a total of 1.143 million euros. Moreover, a surprising association has been seen to be created between David Redvers and Infinity Nine Horses the stable of Tony Parkerabout a girl from australian Zustar.