Denali Sells American Pharoah colt for $1.25 Million at Fasig Select
After a relatively quiet morning on the grounds of Fasig-Tipton, a fierce bidding war for an American Pharoah colt kept the crowd at the Selected Yearlings Showcase enraptured for several tense moments as buyers fired shots back and forth in an effort to take home the son of the Ashford Stud stallion.
In the end, Speedway Stables was declared the winner on a final bid of $1.25 million as under bidder Coolmore bowed out in the final seconds.
FTKSEP, Hip 400: yearling, c, 2019, American Pharoah – Swingit, by Victory Gallop; Breeder: Mr. & Mrs. Bayne Welker Jr. (KY)
Sale Price: $1,250,000
Buyer: Speedway Stables
Consignor: Denali Stud, agent for Bayne & Christina Welker
“I’m shaking,” said bloodstock agent Marette Farrell, who signed the winning ticket on the colt. “I was on the phone with (Speedway Stables) K.C. Weiner who coached me through this. We were thrilled to get him.”
Consigned by Denali Stud, agent for breeders Bayne and Christina Welker, the colt cataloged as Hip 400 is out of the multiple stakes winning Victory Gallop mare Swingit and is a half brother multiple grade/group 1-placed Neolithic . The colt’s half sister, Travel Column, a Frosted filly that sold last year for $850,000 at The Saratoga Sale, Fasig-Tipton’s select yearling sale, recently broke her maiden in impressive fashion in her career debut for OXO Equine and trainer Brad Cox.
The colt’s female family includes two-time Italian champion Carnauba.
“We just thought he was an absolutely stunning horse,” said Farrell. “We were the under bidder on his half sister last year. I have seen this horse on the farm and knew how much his connections thought of him Bob Baffert is going to train him and he loved him. We’re thrilled to get him and we think he’s a really special horse. He’s by an up-and-coming sire and the mare has already produced what looks like a couple of really good horses and a very exciting filly. That’s what Speedway wants and what Bob Baffert is looking for.
“K.C. and Peter Fluor are tow of the best owners a person could possibly have. They’re game, they’re very successful in their own business world, and they apply all those principles to our little horse world. They’ve done very well so far. They love the game, they love being involved with Bob, and they wanted this horse.”
Hip 400 was one of only two horses to break the seven-figure mark across the two-day sale so far. The first was Hip 232, a Quality Road filly purchased by Robbie Medina, agent for Joseph Allen for $1.5 million Sept. 9. Consigned by Hill ‘n’ Dale Sales Agency, agent, the filly is out of Eithad Airways Irish One Thousand Guineas (G1) winner Marvellous, a daughter of European stallion sensation Galileo.
“It’s nice when it works out that way,” said Denali’s Conrad Bandoroff of the final price. “He’s a beautiful horse and we had all the right people on him. Marette missed out on the half sister last year and this was a special colt. Bayne and Chris Welker raise a good horse. Chris is an unbelievable horsewoman. We’re thrilled. He was an exciting horse to have in the barn and showed like a prince. It was a fantastic result.”
With the market strong at the top but still showing vulnerability on the lower end, Farrell said she was not surprised that the higher-end horses were once again demanding all of the buyers’ attention.
“I think the perceived good horses are making a ton of money,” said Farrell. “It’s the same as normal. But I feel as the sale goes on there will be a time where it’s going to fall off a cliff, sadly. The good horse on each day will sell well, but the under the radar horses may not have the people they would hope for. So that’s where I’m going to be.”
Excerpt from Bloodhorse By Ron Mitchell and Meredith Daugherty