KILDARE breeze-up vendor Danny O'Donovan topped Thursday's Tattersalls Guineas Breeze Up Sale when selling a filly by King Of Change for 180,000gns.

Remarkably, just last week O'Donovan sold another filly by the same sire for £280,000 and a Sioux Nation filly for £300,000. A week earlier O'Donovan sold another King Of Change filly for 80,000gns at Tattersalls. All three were bought by O'Donovan and agent Adam Potts as yearlings for relatively small sums.

Thursday's sale-topper was was knocked down to Oliver St Lawrence and trainer Bryan Smart, who saw off the attentions of persistent underbidder Henry Lascelles.

“We liked the filly, she breezed really well - we will get her home and see where we go,” said Smart. “Everything we have seen by King Of Change has breezed well. Her new owner was keen to have a filly and if she could get some blacktype then she will be a breeding prospect.”

O'Donovan, standing alongside his ownership team of Adam Potts and journalist Brian Sheerin, was all smiles after the sale: “It is incredible - I thought she might make about 130,000gns but to get to 180,000gns is incredible, it is life-changing money.”

“King Of Change has been fantastic to me all year, I have had three of them and have got life-changing money for them. It is an incredible feeling, and it can help put things on the up.”

Potts added: “We knew she was very quick and we thought she would do a good time, we were hopeful that she would deliver and she did. We really liked her when we bought her, she did nothing but improve, get stronger and faster, and it was in March that we thought she might be quick.”

Donovan laughed: “The pressure is off now, I am just grateful that everything has come together this year, King of Change is my hero now!”

Group 1 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes winner and 2000 Guineas runner-up King Of Change is by Farhh and stands at Michael Orlandi’s Starfield Stud at a fee of €5,000.

O'Donovan and his partners bought the filly for £20,000 at the Goffs Premier Yearling Sale last August.

Linehan trebles investment

Eddie Linehan of Lackendarra Stables in Cork sold a Mehmas colt for 160,000gns, having bought him for 55,000gns at Tattersalls last October. The colt was purchased by agent Billy Jackson-Stops on behalf of Opulence Thoroughbreds, following a protracted bidding duel with bloodstock agent Ross Doyle.

Linehan said: "He did a very good breeze, we gave a good throw for him in Book 2 but we targeted this sale specifically in the hope that he might stand out a bit. He is a very nice horse, looked the part and vetted well. The good ones are always easy to sell. He stood out all along for us, the day we bought him we thought we'd got a bit of value. We have been lucky with Mehmas before and we are delighted.”

Jackson-Stops revealed: “He is for Andrew Balding and Opulence Thoroughbreds. He is by the right sire, he did a lovely breeze and a good time. We wanted to buy something that would be active this year and on that front he is everything that we wanted. We loved his attitude, know the consignor well and he always does a good job.”

Another Mehmas colt sold for 150,000gns whensolf by Yeomanstown Stud to Blandford Bloodstock's Richard Brown. Agent Edgar Byrne was the underbidder.

Brown said: “He has been bought for Sheikh Rashid and he goes to Richard Fahey, who has obviously been very successful for Sheikh Rashid. Pretty Crystal, the filly supplemented for the 1000 Guineas on Sunday, is out of a breeze-up filly whom we purchased, so it is all coming around with progeny now starting to come forward.”

Brown added: “This horse did a very good breeze, he was very green and came across the track with his ears pricked. Watching it live I loved it, but he is going to have to sharpen his act up a bit as he was fairly babyish.

“I love the stallion - he is a very serious sire of two-year-olds. This horse looks a real two-year-old and I thought he has the sire's best attributes.”

The February-born colt is out of the Redoute's Choice mare Camisole, whose dam is a half-sister to the Grade 1 Preakness Stakes winner War Of Will and to Irish champion two-year-old Pathfork. He was bought by James O’Callaghan for 48,000gns at the Tattersalls December Foal Sale from Peter Nolan Bloodstock.

Blandford also paid 150,000gns for a Hello Youmzain colt from Mick Murphy and Sarah O'Connell's Longways Stables.

“I seem to be cornering the market in Hello Youmzains, that is the third one I have bought this breeze-up season," laughed Brown.

“I guess I like his stock, I have bought him for Sheikh Juma and he was particularly keen on him from the start. I put a list together, and when this horse was there the Sheikh seemed fairly excited about him. This horse looks a lovely sort, did a very good breeze and the sire has the credentials to be a good stallion."

When asked to compare his three Hello Youmzains, Brown said: "They all have great muscle and balance, and have got a bit of class and style about them. I'll be honest, at the yearling sales he was not on my radar at all, but he has stepped up here to be very much on my radar.”

The colt will reportedly go into training with James Tate. He is out of the two-year-old winner Dream Dreamer and was a good pinhooking result for Longways, having been bought at Book 2 of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sale for 35,000gns.

Low clearance rate

Despite these notable transactions at the top end of the market, the Breeze Up Sale saw a clearance rate of only 72%, well below last year's 84%. This has been a recurring theme at all the recent breeze-up sales.

Tattersalls chairman Edmond Mahony said: "The strong and diverse demand we saw during the Horses In Training section of the sale was not matched in the Breeze Up section. The Breeze Up average and median prices have held up well in relation to last year’s record-breaking sale, but the clearance rate has been well below par."

Horses In Training

The breeze-up section was preceded by the second session of the Guineas Horses in Training Sale, which was again dominated by horses sold on behalf of owner-breeder John Dance.

Top price was the 130,000gns paid by owner Jeremy Young for the three-year-old filly Supreme Beauty, who was one of five lots to realise in excess of 100,000gns. The daughter of No Nay Never had made one start for her previous connections when a promising third at Beverley. Successful purchaser Young has horses in training with Michael Appleby who was sat alongside him in the gods.

The Lodge Park Stud bred three-year-old is a daughter of the winning Galileo mare Park Bloom, an own-sister to Oaks winner Was and the Epsom Derby third Amhran Na Bhfiann. This is the family of Park Express and New Approach,

On pedigree the most interesting lot in the sale was the two-year-old Invincible Spirit colt out of four-time Group 1 winner Laurens. Named First Ambition, he fetched just 42,000gns.

Boosted by the 50-plus John Dance draft, the Horses in Training Sale had a record turnover of 3,015,500gns, just shy of double 2023’s record aggregate, and a record average and median of 22,845gns and 15,000gns respectively, increases of 27% and 25% on the previous year’s figures. The clearance rate was an impressive 93%.

Tattersalls chairman Edmond Mahony commented: "Demand in the Horses in Training section has without doubt exceeded expectations, with domestic British and Irish buyers competing strongly with their international counterparts to produce record breaking trade comfortably surpassing the previous records for turnover, average and median as well as the number of lots selling for 100,000 guineas or more.

"The clearance rate for the horses in training was a remarkable 93%, yet again demonstrating the sustained global appetite for British and Irish horses in training sold at Tattersalls, and the horses belonging to Coverdale Stud and Titanium Racing were particularly sought after with buyers from throughout Europe, the Gulf region and Australia all making their presence felt."

Guineas Horses in Training Sale, 2024

Whole Sale Statistics

Current Year Previous Year Change %

Lots Catalogued 198 155 +28%

Lots Withdrawn 56 56 0%

Lots Offered 142 99 +43%

Lots Unsold 10 14 -29%

Lots Sold 132 85 +55%

Total Value (gns) 3,015,500 1,525,500 +98%

Median Value (gns) 15,000 12,000 +25%

Average Value (gns) 22,845 17,947 +27%

% Offered Lots Sold 93% 86% +8%

Guineas Breeze Up Sale, 2024

Whole Sale Statistics

Current Year Previous Year Change %

Lots Catalogued 202 203 0%

Lots Withdrawn 39 35 +11%

Lots Offered 163 168 -3%

Lots Unsold 45 27 +67%

Lots Sold 118 141 -16%

Total Value (gns) 4,943,500 5,942,500 -17%

Median Value (gns) 27,000 30,000 -10%

Average Value (gns) 41,894 42,145 -1%

% Offered Lots Sold 72% 84% -14%

Guineas Sale, 2024

Combined Sale Statistics

Current Year Previous Year Change %

Lots Catalogued 400 358 +12%

Lots Withdrawn 95 91 +4%

Lots Offered 305 267 +14%

Lots Unsold 55 41 +34%

Lots Sold 250 226 +11%

Total Value (gns) 7,959,000 7,468,000 +7%

Median Value (gns) 20,000 24,000 -17%

Average Value (gns) 31,836 33,044 -4%

% Offered Lots Sold 82% 85% -4%