Keeneland Sales Coverage

After covering the Keeneland Septemeber Sale yesterday, I was amazed to discover there were ZERO seven digit horses sold. Compared to at least five on the first day of last years September Sale. The breeders/sellers and those involved in the sale were expecting the market to correct itself, but that is pretty major. I just wanted to give some resources for those of you who want to follow the sales.

UPDATE: As I am writing this, a breaking news alert from just mentioned that the FIRST seven digit horse of the sale was sold.

You can follow the sales with Ron as he is on the grounds from dawn to dusk posting stories and tweets. Dede is also working the sales, and video is daily through Thursday. So a great team bringing in depth sales coverage. Ron or Dede may post breaking news, so that is an important reason to check them out via Twitter.

News Editor Ron Mitchell will be posting updates via @BH_SaleUpdates.
@lordatwar is Blood-Horse longtime employee Tom Hall and a pedigree expert and Thoroughbred historian. He will be posting real-time updates as horses enter the ring. 
@BloodHorse will retweet the most important updates from both accounts.

Sale Video:

Sale Preview:

[brightcove videoid="39815849001"]

Day 1 Wrap:

[brightcove videoid="40122117001"]

Quick Story:

Blood-Horses' own Stable Boy use to work the Keeneland sales aiding in video and website production. He was telling me a story of a lady who some of his buddies noticed acting oddly in the crowd one auction day long ago. They were noticing her moving as if to bid on major horses and yet not being counted by the auctioneers, or she was just being candid.

Anyway, she was approached by one of the tech guys and asked about what she was doing, and she started to explain she was fantasy bidding. She would come to watch sales and pretend to bid on horses she liked, but made sure it was subtle enough to no one would really notice. Unless you are a techy apparently.

I thought that was a fun story and kind of bizarre, but no doubt a hobby if you are a horse enthusiast. Now I would not recommend bidding on a horse and then running away, as a certain plaid wearing man did, but do go to sales and watch if you have never been. It is neat to see all the varying nationalities and see what breeding patterns people are aiming for. I noticed state breeder of the year from Minnesota methodically peering into the catalog under the shade of a tree.

Side Notes:

I will be writing a brief blog on my experience at Dixieanna Farm soon, to add more to the magazine feature and video feature we are partnering together. I would expect that Friday.

Piratesonthelake had a headline and story in the Friday September 4, 2009 Daily Racing Form. So a nice shout out to him in becoming a celebrity =)


Leave a Comment:


He's a well-behaved individual, strking , and sold for 2,050,000 a new high price.' Tom Hall tweeted at the end of the bidding war.

The second seven digit horse of the sale.

15 Sep 2009 2:33 PM
Linda in Texas

The much lower prices being offered for horses with exquisite bloodlines is a chance for many who in past years were not able to purchase the cream of the crop to now do so. The sellers are the ones of course who are taking the hit and a loss. When you consider that investors lost an average of 40 percent of their investments, including this poster, in the financial crisis, then a horse that sold for 3 or 4 million last year, is now selling for 2 or 3.

It may not just be this simple theory as other issues come into play also, but certainly should not spell total doom for the future. From the looks of videos of the offerings at Keeneland, there are some magnificent horses being offered for sale. I am not a buyer, nor a seller, nor a trainer nor a jockey. As a fan I happen to simply love the world of thoroughbred horses and every aspect of it.

16 Sep 2009 8:46 AM

HI Linda!

There is definitely a lot of opportunity to buy nice horses for a lower price. I hope that works out for a lot of people in the mid and small sized operations.

Its tough on the investors/sellers, like you said, with stud fees and raising the horse expenses.

As a fellow racing fan, I understand what you are saying =)

16 Sep 2009 8:54 AM
Adele Maxon

Maybe the middle and lower end of the market will be better for a change if more people have the opportunity to buy!

16 Sep 2009 11:04 AM

This is the best thing to happen in horse racing..I hate that the breeders are whining about barely making it or losing money and can't recover their stud fees, etc.. Is anyone talking about when they were making 10-20x the stud fee a few years ago?  Greed has absolutely ran this business in the ground and it's good that we're seeing this sorely needed market correction.  This greed has let to overbreeding and tons of horses that have/will end up being slaughtered, simply because of greed.  Greedy non horse people were in the game only to pinhook horses or breed horses cuz it was a hot industry to make money in.  The burden bearer of all this has been the end user, which are the owners and the trainers.  I hope it hits absolute rock bottom.  Also, no i'm not angry, no i'm not an animal activist, I love the horse business very much, but hate to see what the greed has done so that's why I've said what I've said. Bottom line, this is how it should be and it will actually go a long way in possibly getting new people in the game, which is what racing always needs..

16 Sep 2009 4:23 PM

There's something decidedly sick about subjecting a baby to 17 scopings in a day...

17 Sep 2009 6:54 AM

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