THE 2022 edition of the Arqana Vente d’Élevage will forever be remembered by the sales company and participants. The four-day sale was frontloaded in terms of quality, with last Saturday’s opening session producing a turnover not far off €46 million, surpassing the entire sale takings of the record sale 12 months earlier.

All sale barometers were healthy, including a much-improved clearance rate, while the top end of the market followed the trend of all recent sales, being extremely competitive.

On the day 23 mares and fillies sold for €500,000 or more, compared to 13 last year, while seven of them made €1 million or more compared to five in 2021.

Following the historic first day, Eric Hoyeau, the president of Arqana, and Freddy Powell, the company’s executive director, were delighted, commenting: “We would like to sincerely thank all our vendors for entrusting us with a collection of exceptional mares, fillies and foals, which allowed us to gather a remarkable panel of buyers from the United States, Australia, Europe, Japan and elsewhere.”

New high

A new high for a horse sold at Arqana was achieved when the excellent Malavath sold for the week’s top price of €3,200,000. The ring was full of anticipation as the group winner and Group 1-placed filly entered, consigned by Écurie des Monceaux.

A graduate of Arqana’s breeze-up sale when purchased by David Redvers and Ghislain Bozo of Meridian International, the Francis-Henri Graffard-trained filly won the Group 2 Critérium de Maisons-Laffite before finishing runner-up in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies’ Turf at Del Mar last year.

This season, Malavath triumphed in the Group 3 Prix Imprudence and finished second in the Group 1 Qatar Prix de La Foret. Last time out she finished fifth in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile. Fiona Craig was acting for Moyglare Stud when she signed the docket for the daughter of Mehmas. The filly now heads to the United States to be trained by Christophe Clément. Craig said: “She’s a beautiful filly, and physically she has everything to be a good broodmare. She should bring speed, which we are looking for. She likes the US and has everything to win a Grade 1 over there. That’s the aim!”

Graffard double

Group 1 Prix Vermeille winner Sweet Lady, also trained by Graffard, sold for €2,050,000. The daughter of Lope De Vega started her three-year-old campaign by winning the Listed Prix La Camargo and then taking the Group 3 Prix de Flore. She continued to progress and followed up in the Group 2 Prix Corrida, finally capturing the Group 1 Qatar Prix Vermeille.

Claiborne Farm’s Bernie Sams had to fight hard to secure the blue-blooded filly who hails from the family of greats such as Chris Evert, Chief’s Crown, Sightseek, Special Duty, Winning Colors and Excellent Art. “I’ve been looking for mares with good performances and good pedigrees”, said Sams. “She’s a beautiful filly, and these opportunities don’t come around very often. She’ll go to England where my client already has some of their mares at stud.”