Dancing Rain Sells for 4 Million Guineas at Tattersalls December Mare Sale
The Oaks winner DANCING RAIN, offered in foal to the legendary FRANKEL, sold for 4 millions guineas on the opening day of the Tattersalls December Mare Sale. On a day of extraordinary trade, a total of 203 lots were sold for 18,693,000 guineas, a rise of 64% on 2012, whilst the average and median also both jumped up significantly by 51% and 40% to 92,084 guineas and 42,000 guineas respectively.
DANCING RAIN was the only Oaks winner carrying her first foal to be offered at public auction in the past 50 years and so was always going to be one of the star attractions at the Tattersalls December Sale and did not disappoint, realizing 4,000,000 guineas, the second highest price for a Broodmare at auction in Europe. Badger’s Bloodstock’s Grant Pritchard-Gordon opening the bidding at 2 million guineas before Highflyer Bloodstock’s David Minton chimed in along with Pinar Araci, daughter of Ibrahim Araci. As the price rose, Araci, who was sat alongside bloodstock advisor Rob Speers bid 3.9 million before John Ferguson came in with his first bid at 4 million guineas to secure the mare.
"It really was a no-brainer," said Ferguson outside the packed sales ring.
"Sheikh Mohammed has not bought a lot of mares in the recent years, but at the end of the day Sheikh Mohammed felt that, to use the old phrase, she really did tick all the boxes - she is an Oaks winner from the family of a Derby winner.
"This game is all about reducing the odds and give you the greatest chance of producing a Classic winner - buying Dancing Rain is a way of reducing those odds.
"You can have lots of mares, but you need the jewels - Sheikh Mohammed felt that she is a jewel.
"On paper she looks the part, but there were two things in particular that I loved about her. First, she is such a beautiful mare, then second I had supper with William and Maureen Haggas at the weekend and they told me what a straightforward pleasure she was to train.
"And we haven't even got to the fact that she is in-foal to Frankel!"
DANCING RAIN was bought at a yearling by Liam Norris and William Huntingdon for €200,000 for brothers Martin and Lee Taylor, whom Norris manages Clairemont Stud for. A clearly emotional Norris commented afterwards: "It is wonderful. She was bought as a yearling and to bring her here and with all these people to see her....
"Of course, we'll be sorry to see her go, but there are obviously monetary decisions that have to be made - there is just too much tied up in one horse.
"The team has done a great job and she couldn't have gone to a better home. She really steals hearts."
Flaxman Stables’ Alan Cooper signed for the second top price today when he went to 960,000 guineas to secure the Group 2 Challenge Stakes winner FIESOLANA. The daughter or Aussie Rules was bought in 2011 as a breeze-up filly by Federico Barberini for €35,000 and consigned here by Ballyphilip Stud on behalf of Geraldine Regan.
"She was gutsy and determined, and is a lovely filly," said Cooper. "We have not decided yet whether she'll race on, we'll think about it, it's not an impossibility.
"She has been bought to eventually visit Maxios, who has been retired to Gestut Fahrhof."
"The team - and it is a team that makes the decisions - liked her very much."
The only other lot on the opening day offered in foal to FRANKEL was the KINGMAMBO mare DROPS who was consigned from The Castlebridge Consignment. The four-year-old mare is a daughter of the Oaks winning filly ALEXANDROVA and was knocked down to Charlie Mason’s Silfield Bloodstock for 750,000 guineas.
"She's been bought for a client," said Mason.
"My client deserves a lot of success. This is a lovely family, but obviously the Frankel covering was a factor - I hope he can produce one half as good as he was.
"The foal will be kept to race and it doesn't matter what sex it is - just as long as it is born alive and well. She will be coming back to the farm," added Mason.
The Tattersalls December Mare Sale continues at 9.30am on Tuesday, December 3 with IMMORTAL VERSE set to be offered along with a further eight mares in foal to FRANKEL.