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Yearlings sell well at Magic Millions

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Major thoroughbred horse studs on the Darling Downs are generally happy with sales at the March Gold Coast Magic Millions auction, given that overall sales were a little down on the last two years.

The horse racing industry is always a high risk venture and the risk begins when thoroughbred breeders firstly hope that their foals grow big and strong for the yearling sales.

Young horses being what they are can be very prone to injury and a breeder’s hopes can be dashed well before the big sales.

The health and well being of the yearling is only part of the risk as breeders must choose a suitable stallion for their mares two years before yearling sales.

During this period the stallion might become unfashionable in an industry prone to sudden changes in attitudes towards stallions.

Breeders on the Darling Downs are fortunate to have two of Australia’s best stallions, Spirit of Boom and Better Than Ready, here on the Downs.

While these stallions are easily assessable for local breeders the risk is still there with a service for mares by Spirit of Boom costing $33,000 and Better Than Ready $24,000.

Yearlings by both these stallions sold well at the Magic Millions but breeders are gambling their yearling will fetch more than the service fee.

Yearling sales like all commodities are affected by the state of the economy and sales this year were slightly down.

Jeff Kruger of Lyndhurst Stud near Warwick was, however, pleased by the sales of his stallion, Better Than Ready with Lot 270 by his stallion selling for a healthy $115,000 and Lot 280 selling for $100,000.

Scott McAlpine of Eureka Stud at Cambooya was also happy with the sales of yearlings by his stallion Spirit of Boom, with Lot 103 fetching $140,000 and several others topping more than $100,000.

Clear Mountain Fairview stud at Greenmount would no doubt have been pleased with a price of $110,000 for one of its yearlings and solid prices for yearlings by stallions Love Conquers All and Wanted.

Oaklands Stud at Umbiram would have been over the moon with the sale of the yearling by stallion, Power, going for $100,000.

As an example of the fickle nature of yearling sales another Power yearling sold for only $5,000.

All studs have yearlings where the sale price falls well below expectations or does not meet the reserve price at auction.

Sales clearance at the recent March Magic Millions auction was about 83 per cent and the average sale price about $35,000.

The racing industry is by nature a high risk proposition and thoroughbred breeders share this risk with all other areas of the industry.

On Our Selection News 30 March 2023

This article appeared in On Our Selection News, 30 March 2023.

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