Each year, thousands of thoroughbreds are sold at horse sales across the country. This is part of a series reviewing the horses and the sales in this billion dollar industry.
We begin our thoroughbred sales review with a look at the recent Keeneland September yearling sale. Over the course of 12 days, 2,555 horses sold for a total of more than $307 million and an average sale price of $120,487.
The top-selling horse at the sale was a filly by Tapit who was the leading sire of 2016. The filly is a full sister to Cupid who sold for $900,000 in 2013 and has won more than $1.7 million in his career. Last year, Cupid won the Rebel Stakes, Indiana Derby and West Virginia Derby. This year, he has won a Grade-1 race and is listed as a contender for the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile.
The next best-selling colt was a colt by Tapit who sold for $2.6 million and has been named Gun It. The colt's dam is Miss Besilu who, in 2011, sold herself for $2.6 million. Miss Besilu is a half-brother to Saint Liam who won the 2005 Breeders' Cup Classic and earned more than $4.4 million in his career.
The horses sold at this sale were exclusively yearlings, meaning they all turned one-year-old in January. (Regardless of the actual day of their birth, all thoroughbreds share the same birthday of January 1). The yearlings sold at this sale will turn two in January. They could begin racing in the spring or summer next year and some could even be on the Triple Crown trail in 2019.
Here are the top-selling horses at the sale:
Name Sex Sire Price Notes
Unnamed Filly Tapit $2.7 million Full sister to G1-winning millionaire Cupid
Gun It Colt Tapit $2.6 million Dam is half-sister to BC Classic winner Saint Liam
Unnamed Colt Tapit $2.5 million Dam won $1.1 million on the track
Unnamed Colt War Front $1.9 million G1-winning dam sold for $2.8 million in 2014
Unnamed Filly War Front $1.6 million Dam sold for $3.9 million in 2014; from family of European star Churchill