The Forest City Sale at Western Fair District in London Ontario was held this past Saturday and Sunday. As one might expect, there was a price to pay for the general unrest and upheaval in the Ontario standardbred world. Six fewer yearlings were sold this year than last, 257 down from 263, but the gross was off more than $2.1 million. Last year the average was about $18,000, while this year it dropped to $10,500. The 71 fillies auctioned off this year brought on average less than $8,000.
The same disheartening downward trend established at the Canadian Yearling Sale continued here. At that sale, 21 Angus Hall yearlings had commanded an average of almost $29,000 in 2011, while 11 brought an average of under $7,000 this year. Over the weekend 21 Angus Halls brought an average of $8,000, with the 10 fillies averaging a paltry $5,300. Last year at Forest City, 19 Angus Halls averaged about $24,500.
Angus Hall, the sire of Peaceful Way and Majestic Son, stands for $10,000 at Winbak. The Three-year-old filly, Sugar Wheeler, was his best performer on the ONSS circuit this year. She won a Gold Final. His most productive colt in the program was Keystone Orion, who won once.
Dewey, who sports the highest stud fee in Ontario, at $20,000, had six sell for an average of about $18,700. The high was a colt that went for $25,000. At the recent Lexington Selected Sale, 18 of the two dozen Deweys auctioned off brought $25,000 or less. Next year will be his offspring’s first crack at the ONSS money—whatever that is.
The first crop of Shadow Plays to hit the sales ring brought an average of about $11,600 for the 17 offered. Ten of the seventeen sold for $10,000 or less. The fillies averaged about $13,000, while the colts only averaged $8,000. Four of the seventeen brought $20,000 or more, with the top being a $27,000 filly. The nine Shadow Plays sold at the Canadian Yearling Sale averaged about $11,600. The top at that sale was a $15,500 colt.
Shadow Play stands for $5,000 at Winbak. That five and six thousand dollar niche is pretty crowded in Ontario, with Badlands Hanover, Sportswriter, Jereme’s Jet, No Pan Intended, Artistic Fella, Big Jim, Up The Credit, as well as Shadow Play.
Muscle Mass, who had 13 sell for an average of almost $25,000 last year at Forest City, with six of them going for $20,000 or more, had nine sell for an average of $7,100 this year. While nine of the twelve sold last year went for $10,000 and up, that figure represented the top price at this year’s sale. Most of his better colts and fillies were Grassroots competitors.
Kadabra, one of the few Ontario stallions consistently competitive in open stakes, averaged almost $18,000 for the 14 sold at Forest City. Last year ten went for an average of more than $28,000. The six fillies brought an average of more than $24,000, while the six colts came in at a much lower $13,000. In 2011 only two of the ten brought $10,000 or less; this year eight of the seventeen went for less than $10,000. The dozen Kadabras sold at the Canadian Yearling Sale averaged less than $13,000. If any stallion could keep his head above water in these difficult times, you’d think it would be this sire of Bee A Magician, Knows Nothing, Prestidigitator, Miss Paris and Cold Certified.
Mach Three is another Tara Hills stallion with a following. There were nine fewer Mach Threes sold this year than last. The seven of them averaged almost $28,000. Last year 16 brought in an average of more than $32,000. This time a colt out of Carolina Moon brought $85,000, which helped boost the average. Aside from him, the top was a $30,000 filly.
Camluck has had spectacular success with the gelding Michaels Power this year, but beyond him the twenty-five-year-old stallion didn’t have any standouts in the ONSS program. Last year at Forest City sixteen Camlucks averaged $40,000, while this year seventeen averaged about $18,500. The seven fillies only averaged about $7,000, with only one bringing more than $10,000. The colts, on the other hand, averaged more than $24,000 for ten of them. This was helped by the $77,000 given for Nirvana Seelster, whose dam is a full-sister to Strike An Attitude. Second dam a full-sister to Artiscape. Last year at Forest City, Nitro Seelster, a full brother to Nirvana Seelster brought $150,000. Last year 13 of the 16 Camlucks sold for $20,000 or more, while this year it was 6 of 17.
Badlands started off his first year in the ONSS program with a bang. Tarpon Hanover was hot early, winning a Gold Final, but he cooled off when he came up against the open colts. It’s No Secret was very good, winning two Gold Finals and banking more than $200,000, and Love Canal was a shooting star, with a couple of good wins in the program. But Badlands went from selling 13 yearlings for an average of almost $22,000 last year to selling nine for $12,000 this time. A $25,000 colt topped it for him. This was much better than what happened at the CYS where eight of Badlands yearlings averaged a shade over $5,200, topped off by a $9,200 colt. Ugh!
Last year Santana Blue Chip averaged almost $18,000 for 14 yearlings, while this year there were only two, one for $2,500 and the other for $4,500.
The offerings from Windsong Espoir totaled four for an average of less than $4,000
Lis Mara went from nine sold in 2011 for an average of $6,700 to three sold this time for an average of $3,700.
Jereme’s Jet went from 16 selling for an average of more than $23,000 in 2010, to 12 for $18,000 last year, to one for $24,000 this year. At this year’s CYS seven Jereme’s Jets averaged $4,500. In 2010 he had them selling for 105, 90, 55, 60 etc. He hasn’t stretched beyond the ONSS program. The three-year-old filly, Apogee Hanover, earned almost $170,000 in SS money, but she only won one race.
Last year’s sale was loaded with Stonebridge Regals—21 of them that averaged about $11,500. This year there were only twelve, and they averaged $4,000. Only one of the twelve brought more than $6,500.
Nine Mister Bigs averaged under $10,000.
Not much good news to be had here.