249 horses change hands for gross receipts of US$18,015,200

Note all listed amounts in article are listed in US dollars

It may have been cold outside for the opening session of the 2022 Keeneland January Horses of All Ages Sale, but activity within the pavilion heated up Jan. 11 as the hours ticked away.

With buyers stepping up after the sale was pushed back a day due to inclement weather in Lexington the week prior, the final stroke of the hammer on Tuesday saw, an increase from the previous year's first session gross of nearly 45.7%. 

During the 2021 Keeneland January sale's first day, 215 horses from 302 offered sold for $12,367,900. Day One totals for 2022 also surpassed the pre-pandemic opening session gross of the 2020 Keeneland January sale, when 233 horses brought $15,003,300.

"You have to be very pleased with how it all ended up. We were expecting a solid day of trade and some nice quality towards the end of the day, and that's how it ended up," said Tony Lacy, Keeneland's vice president of sales. "The numbers were matching with last year's numbers up till about halfway through the day, and then it started creeping ahead. That is encouraging for the first session."

With a $72,350 average showing a 25.8% increase from the 2021 average of $57,525 and the median increasing 11.4% from $35,000 to $39,000, the 85 horses that did not attain their reserve represented an RNA rate of 25.4%. It was 28.8% last year, with 87 horses going unsold.

Goncalo Torrealba's Three Chimneys Farm was Tuesday's leading buyer, spending $1.16 million on two horses solely in the name of Three Chimneys, which were purchased to buy out a partnership with Hill' n' Dale Farm. Both 2-year-old fillies Princesse Lele (Hip 276) and Justly (Hip 176) will proceed into training and race in the red and navy silks before coming home to become part of the broodmare band. Three Chimneys' third purchase, Remedy  (Hip 298), sold for $470,000 in partnership with Whisper Hill Farm. The 7-year-old mare sold not in foal but will be heading to Gun Runner   this year.

"The market is robust today, those numbers were above expectations, but the Torrealbas are looking long-term on horses they already own half of and Remedy, I thought that was fair," commented Doug Cauthen, vice chairman of Three Chimneys. 

"I think we are done buying, but we will see. It will be a lot more value shopping from here on out."

Brian Graves of Gainesway, who often dons both consignor and buyer hats, noted Tuesday's market was "selective but good."

Taylor Made Sales Agency concluded Tuesday's session as the leading consignor by gross with 54 head sold for receipts of $4,564,000.

Spendthrift Farm's Authentic  , whose first foals hit the ground this year, ended day one as leading covering sire with two mares selling at an average price of $325,000, both of which went to Coteau Grove Farm for a combined price of $650,000.

With 23 supplemental entries at the end of the day, three of which landed within the top 10 prices of the day, Lacy commented: "I think the supplemental entries were excellent. People saw a premium on quality in November and thought this might be a good environment to sell in."

The last offering of the night was a 2022 no-guarantee season to 2017 Horse of the Year Gun Runner  , which was donated by Ron Winchell and Three Chimneys Farm. With all proceeds set to go directly to victims of the recent Western Kentucky tornadoes, Bill Layni purchased the season for $130,000. Gun Runner will stand in 2022 for an advertised fee of $125,000.


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