The most recent auction being broadcast is that of the National Two Year Old Sale of two year old thoroughbreds held at Gosforth Park earlier this month.
Sponsored by Emperor’s Palace, a total of 361 thoroughbred horses were auctioned off, bringing in approximately R21,2 million for the sellers. Last year’s auction raked in R26.1 million with the most expensive horse going for R1 million. This year the top price gleaned was R350 000.
“Antfarm was not involved in the actual bidding,” said Jacek Dziembowski, a director of Antfarm. “We just facilitated the live video broadcast of the event, which was attended by breeders and buyers from around the country – and abroad.”
He confirmed the event was broadcast both locally and internationally, adding that it had received “significant interest”.
“We handle four events each year for the Thoroughbred Breeder’s Association,” said Dziembowski.
He said online video is an “immediate and accessible” medium for all interested parties and allowed buyers and sellers to partake in the auction remotely. “While they couldn’t actually bid online because there is a delay of five to 30 seconds on the live video feed, what was compelling for buyers is that many were able to send proxies to bid on their behalf. These buyers, many internationally based, were able to view the proceedings in near real-time. What was also very helfpful for the sellers is that TBA attracts horses from breeders located all around the country – and these breeders were able to view the proceedings to see how their thoroughbreds were doing in the sale.”
According to Bloodstock SA, an affiliate body of the Thoroughbred Breeder’s Association, the Emperor’s Palace National 2-year old sale came in with results indicative of the current lull in World Markets. Jan Naude, CEO of Bloodstock South Africa, said that the sale “was in line with expectations”, but was pleased that 82% of the catalogued lots were sold – which meant that the majority of the breeders were prepared to let their horses go in tough times.
The top sale came in late on Sunday when Alec Laird and his clients secured lot 455, a Dynasty filly, Queen of the Sky – the first foal out of the half-sister to three-time winners Fun Fly and Angel Flight. Two out of the top buyers by aggregate of the sale were Zimbabwean trainer Seb D’Aquino and Kenyan commentator and bloodstock agent Tom Fraser – once again attesting to the popularity of the South African thoroughbred among neighboring regions.
Taking a look at studs represented as this year’s sale, Klipdrif Stud as agent topped the aggregate list with their 27 lots amassing just under R2.5 million at an average of R89 259. The overall average dipped from R74 347 in 2010 to R58 837 – and the overall aggregate went down from R26.1 million in 2010 to R21.2 million this year.