‘Uptown Twirl’ Tops $1 Million Monday at Keeneland Sale
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The sale of stakes winner Uptown Twirl, a half-sister to recent Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) winner and probable 2-year-old champion male Classic Empire, for $1.075 million and the popularity of horses in the Complete Dispersal of Ernie Semersky and Dory Newell’s Conquest Stables generated increases in gross, average and median prices during Monday’s seventh session of the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale.
Consigned by Lane’s End, agent and sold to Three Chimneys Farm, Uptown Twirl is the 19th horse to bring one million dollars or more during the November Sale, which began Nov. 8. It marks the first time a horse has brought seven figures during the second week of the November Sale.
On Monday, Keeneland sold 254 horses for $13,221,100, up 78.50 percent from the comparable session in 2015 when 256 horses sold for $7,406,700. The average of $52,052 jumped 79.91 percent from $28,932 last year. The median of $27,000 was 28.57 percent above $21,000 recorded in 2015.
Cumulatively, Keeneland has sold 1,408 horses for $193,177,300, down 2.40 percent from the $197,934,700 paid for 1,462 horses during the corresponding period in 2015. The average of $137,200 was up slightly from last year’s $135,386, while the median of $65,000 is unchanged.
“Having a $1.075 million race filly in the second week of the sale was very exciting,” Keeneland Director of Sales Operations Geoffrey Russell said. “We appreciate Mr. (Goncalo) Torrealba’s (chairman of Three Chimneys Farm) support both selling and now buying. He obviously wants to get a strong broodmare band of dirt horses. Uptown Twirl fits that profile.
“The Conquest Stables dispersal also was a great draw today,” Russell said. “Lane’s End and (Sales Director) Allaire Ryan have done a wonderful job managing this whole dispersal. They have made sure the horses offered here can go on either racing or breeding. Having these racehorses brings a fresh energy to the sales grounds. “Today shows what we’ve always said: You bring the product, bring quality, it sells. Be it the first week or the second week of the sale.”
A daughter of Twirling Candy out of the Cat Thief mare Sambuca Classica, the session-topping Uptown Twirl has won four of nine career races, including the 2016 Surfside Stakes and Pleasanton Oaks, and earned $170,714.
“It is pretty simple why we made a big run at that mare, being a half to Classic Empire,” Three Chimneys Director of Bloodstock Services Jacob West said. “She is a great physical herself. She won two stakes this year; she showed she had ability. Pedigree is only going to get better. (She is) going to be a half to a champion 2-year old, so we are pretty excited to own her.
“It is up to Mr. Torrealba whether we put her back into training for the rest of the year,” West added. “The long-term plan is that she is going to be added to the broodmare band. We will sit down and talk about it after the sale and figure out what we are going to do.”
Classic Empire, by Pioneerof the Nile, also won Keeneland’s Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (G1) in October and the Bashford Manor (G3) at Churchill Downs in July.
With the purchase of Uptown Twirl, Three Chimneys Farm was the session’s leading buyer.
Lane’s End also is agent for the Conquest Stables dispersal, which cataloged 111 broodmares and broodmare prospects, racing prospects, stallion prospects and weanlings to the November Sale. On Nov. 8, its Grade 1 winner My Conquestadory, in foal to Tapit, sold for $1.5 million to SF Bloodstock and Newgate Farm.
On Monday, horses from the Conquest Stables dispersal accounted six of the 10 top-priced horses.
Barbara Banke’s Stonestreet Stables paid the session’s second-highest price of $800,000 for Conquest Serenade, a 3-year-old filly by Unbridled’s Song. Out of the Regal Classic mare Sararegal, she is a half-sister to Canadian Horse of the Year Fatal Bullet and stakes winner Millennia.
“She is by Unbridled’s Song, a great broodmare sire,” Stonestreet bloodstock agent John Moynihan said. “We are praying that she is going to win a stakes for us, so we will send her back to (trainer) Mark (Casse). She is a half to a champion and she can run some. We just thought we would take a shot. (Mark) likes her.”
Conquest Serenade has two wins in four starts with $74,800 in earnings.
Adena Springs Farm paid $480,000 for Conquest Vivi, a 2-year-old daughter of Court Vision who is undefeated in three starts at Woodbine this year, including the Nandi and Victorian Queen Stakes. Out of the Victory Gallop mare Keen Victory, she is a half-sister to stakes winner Conquest Enforcer, who is cataloged to sell Tuesday.
“She’s just a very nice, quality filly,” Adena Springs Kentucky General Manager Eoin Ryan said. “She’s got a great race record. She’s 3-for-3, dual stakes winner. She’s Ontario-sired, Ontario-raced. She fits the program up there at Woodbine. We think she can go on. We’ll give her a break most likely and have her ready for next spring. We think she can be a very nice 3-year-old.
“We’ve got quite a few horses in training at Woodbine with several trainers, so (who will condition her) will be up to (Adena Springs owner) Frank (Stronach).”
Sea Horse Breeders purchased Grade 2-placed Conquest Curlgirl for $400,000. The 4-year-old daughter of Curlin out of the Easy Goer mare Montera is from the family of Grade 1 winner Tiz Miz Sue and Grade 2-placed stakes winner Easyfromthegitgo.
On Monday, the Conquest Stables dispersal sold 35 horses for $4,321,500. Cumulatively, the dispersal has sold 46 horses for $6,862,500. The dispersal continues Tuesday.
“The racehorses are selling well. We’re ahead of our estimates, and we’re very happy,” Bill Farish of Lane’s End said. “The traffic has been great at the barn. We had a big crowd yesterday when we had the preview for the colts. They sell tomorrow, and it’ll be fun to see if it can keep right on going. There’s a lot of trainer interest, and there’s a lot on offer.”
Lane’s End was the session’s leading consignor, selling 47 horses for $5,903,700.
Monday’s top-priced weanling was a colt from the first crop of Fed Biz sold to Machmer Hall for $170,000. VanMeter-Gentry Sales, agent, consigned the colt, who is out of the Purge mare Ascot Momma and from the family of Grade 3 winners Five Star Momma and England’s Rose.
“He is the nicest horse I raised this year,” breeder and consignor Tom VanMeter said. “This was a spectacular guy; he had 100 shows in two days. We were walking him up here and people were stopping and leafing through their book to see who he was. My good friend Carrie Brogden (of Machmer Hall) bought him, and she is going to do very well.”
The November Sale continues through Sunday, Nov. 20. Sessions start at 10 a.m. ET. The entire sale is streamed live at Keeneland.com.
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