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Posted 2018-02-15 13:57:27  
Mayfair Horses Go Big at Arqana

The second and final session of the Arqana February Mixed Sale returned a set of pleasing results, headed by the sale of three six-figure lots.

Over the two days of trade, 279 short yearlings, horses in training, fillies and broodmares changed hands for a cumulated €2,844,300 (including private sales), showing a 37% rise on the 2017 renewal which comprised a single session.

The rise in volume didn’t weigh on the clearance rate, which also progressed to just short 80%, while the average price only slipped marginally to €10,015

The André Fabre trainee LEARNING TO FLY (lot 245) turned many heads last October when notching a 2 lengths victory at Lyon-La-Soie on his juvenile debut, in the colours of China Horse Club’s Teo Ah Khing and Mayfair Speculators. The son of Oasis Dream is out of a half-sister to the Group winners PACIFIQUE and PRUDENZIA and with such a pedigree to complement his faultless race record, it was no surprise to see bidding climb to €300,000 in a matter of minutes.

The hammer ultimately fell in favour of Anthony Stroud, who was represented at the sales by Sally-Ann Grassick and couldn’t disclose the identity of the horse’s eventual owner.


A former Al Shaqab colour-bearer, the five-year-old mare LBRETHA (lot 287) stood out as one of the gems of the catalogue as a Listed winner from a blue-blooded family and sold off the track. Bids sparked from all corners of the sales pavilion until Bertrand Le Métayer offered a deal-closing €260,000 for the daughter of Exceed And Excel and granddaughter of Wildenstein stables’ ACTION FRANÇAISE.

“She is for Samuel de Barros who is starting out as a thoroughbred breeder,” commented the agent. “This will be his second broodmare. I liked the fact that she has straits of Machiavellian and will be very easy to mate with Galileo and his sons.”

Samuel de Barros’s wife Elodie operates Ecurie Delo, a significant owner-breeder in the trotting world. He recently branched out in thoroughbred breeding and secured a nomination to Siyouni on in December.

Bermuda Thoroughbreds’ JOHNNY BARNES recently retired to Haras des Granges in the South-West of France and the son of Acclamation is set to receive a choice partner among his first book in the regally-bred LORGNETTE (lot 353), for which John & Jake Warren paid €200,000. The daughter of Galileo is out of the Gr.3 1,000 Guineas Trial 3rd DANCE SECRETARY, herself a half-sister to the Gr.1 winner and sire PERFECT SOUL.

Lorgnette was offered by Ecurie des Monceaux, having raced for a partnership involving Mayfair Speculators. “She is for the owners of Johnny Barnes who are keen to support their stallion,” confirmed Jake Warren. “They have been looking for quality mares and she fitted the bill perfectly”.

Another former Mayfair Speculators colour-bearer and offered by Ecurie des Monceaux, EMOTION (lot 336) commanded a final bid of €75,000 from Charlie Gordon-Watson’s assistant Will Douglass. The daughter of Exceed And Excel failed to shine on the track yet she retains great paddock value as a half-sister to two black type horses out of a sister to AMONITA and COX ORANGE.

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