David AllanDavid Allan (freeracer)The 90-strong Select Session that heralded the start of the 2008 Emperor’s Palace National Yearling Sale at Gosforth Park last night yielded a breathtaking aggregate of R73 million, a 26% increase on the record figure of 2007.

A strong international representation contributed significantly to the remarkably increased average of R960 526, a hike of 31,3% on last year’s record average.

Interestingly both the joint highest bids were knocked down on fillies. Lot 63, Romanesque, by Royal Academy from Egerszegi (Danehill), fetched R3 million along with Lot 90, an unnamed daughter of Western Winter and the prolific mare Mystic Spring.

Romanesque, from Klawervlei Stud, was purchased by Allan Bloodlines on behalf of British businessman Philip Brown, and buyer David Allan commented: “We are particularly fond of Royal Academy as a broodmare sire and this filly has Danehill in her damline. This is Mr. Brown’s first venture into the South African bloodstock market. The filly will remain in South Africa to start with, we will announce her trainer in the next few days.’’

Blandford Bloodstock, on behalf of Graham Beck, acquired the unnamed daughter of Mystic Spring, consigned by Cheveley Stud.

Form Bloodstock bought five yearlings for Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum of Dubai, including Lot 21, Mesquite, a colt by Fort Wood from Slew’s Review, consigned by Wilgerbosdrift Stud, for R2.6 million. All will go into training with Mike de Kock.

“He’s an outstanding specimen with a good international damline,’’ said Mike de Kock. “Sheikh Mohammed watched the proceedings on Tellytrack and we were communicating on the phone.’’

Trainer Herman Brown, representing Dubai-based Dr James Hay, purchased five yearlings including Lot 53, Point Of Honour, a half-sister to Pointing North by Jallad.

“The results were amazing and well above expectations,’’ said BloodStock SA Chief Executive Jan Naude.

BSA Sales Manager Caroline Simpson commented: “After a nerve-wracking week with some technical problems, the Sale exceeded all my expectations and we are delighted at the participation of our overseas guests.’’

Extract from Thoroughbred Breeders Association