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Rich Hill rapt with results for freshman stallion

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

With two days of the Book 1 session completed at the National Yearling Sale, Rich Hill Stud principal John Thompson is on a high.

Thompson went into the sale with realistic ambitions for his 2020 draft as he set about selling progeny from established sires Shocking and Proisir along with the first offerings from European Group One winner Vadamos.

He was confident that his crop of Vadamos youngsters were well positioned to appeal to the wide array of buyers present at the sale but even he could not have expected the positive response that has ensued.

By the close of play on day two, Rich Hill had sold eight of their nine lots consigned for an aggregate of $1.06 million, an average price of $132,500 and a top price of $240,000 for Lot 169, the filly out of Penthouse Princess that is closely related to Rich Hill’s 2015 Gr.1 Melbourne Cup (3200m) winner Prince Of Penzance.

Other consignors were also experiencing good results with Matamata’s Valachi Downs topping the results when they received $330,000 for their bay colt, Lot 331 that was knocked down to the bid of experienced bloodstock agent, Paul Moroney.

"Earlier on TDN did an article and they canvassed some of the leading New Zealand-based agents who had been at the yearling parades and asked, who’s your pick of the bunch of the first season sires," Thompson said.

"The majority of them went for Vadamos for a reason but of course once the Australian buyers are over here you’ve got to convince them. "He’s a horse with a race record and a pedigree that not all of them are familiar with but obviously the Monsun factor was a big thing. "When we had our early parades with the Australian buyers, they were going away very impressed. "A lot of them (sold) have gone into Victoria, which for us is fantastic and for New Zealand and for the Vadamos syndicate."

Not only was Thompson pleased with the raw results, he was also delighted with the diversity of buyers involved across the purchase range. "Some of the leading trainers and syndicators, they believe they can syndicate these horses or they wouldn’t have been paying what they have for them, and off a $15,000 service fee," he said.

"People like Kevin Hickman, Peter Vela and Wentwood Grange, these sorts of people supported the horse and we had some lovely horses by him ourselves.

"There’s no colts or fillies bias so equally we sold two beautiful fillies, one made $240,000 and the other $230,000.

"One was the filly out of Penthouse Princess who is a sister to Prince of Penzance and the filly out of Seonia, who is a Sebring mare. "We specifically bought this mare for Vadamos from the Gold Coast because her third dam is by Mill Reef and we believe those bloodlines were going to click and we got a lovely filly that Ciaron Maher bought for $230,000. It’s exciting times."

Thompson was also buoyed by the strength of the sale to date although cautious about the downstream impact the current state of the local racing industry may have on future editions. "It’s been very strong for the right horse, it’s really encouraging that they’ve come here to buy the New Zealand staying product again," he said. "Shocking’s had a boomer of a sale; I think the bloodstock company will regret there’s not more Shockings in the sale. Everyone that’s gone in the ring, there’s been a lot of competition on.

"The only slight negative is the lack of New Zealand buyers, it’s just a reflection of where our racing industry’s at.

"But there’s good times ahead hopefully, as it sounds as though with this racing legislation bill there’ll be some changes made to make it a little more appropriate for the industry and let us control our own destiny a bit more.

"I know John Messara had a chat with Winston Peters and let’s just hope they can get that through and just get things going." 

- NZ Racing Desk

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