Snitzel tops Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale

Snitzel made headlines for all the right reasons at the first premier auction of the 2016 yearling sales season, the Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale.

He supplied three of the Sale’s seven million-dollar yearlings, a group headed by Strawberry Hill’s $1.6 million colt from stakes-winning juvenile Mirror Mirror, already the dam of Group 1-placed stakeswinner No Looking Back, by Snitzel’s sire Redoute’s Choice. Monte Rosa, an Arrowfield mare from the same family, has already produced Group 1 winner Snitzerland to Snitzel. 

Damion Flower’s Jadeskye Racing and trainer Gerald Ryan – key players in Snitzel’s racing career and many of his winning progeny – signed for the Mirror Mirror colt.

Arrowfield was the vendor of the other two million-dollar lots by Snitzel, the brother to Group 1 winner Sweet Idea, knocked down to New Zealand agent Dean Hawthorne for $1.1 million, and the colt from dual stakeswinner Nocturnelle, a $1 million purchase by agent James Harron. 

Arrowfield has taken a 25 per cent share of the Flidais colt who will be trained by John, Michael & Wayne Hawkes.

This trio of colts take Snitzel’s record of million-dollar sellers to seven, following his pair of 2015 Inglis Easter Sale-toppers, stakes-placed city-winner Sooboog and Group 1 winner Wandjina.   

Snitzel’s 48 lots sold from Book 1 achieved an average price of $329,688, more than 7 times his 2013 fee of $45,000, and bettered only by Exceed And Excel among sires with 3 or more lots sold. 

Most pleasing though were the individual results achieved by breeders and the consistency of the demand for Snitzel’s first offering in 2016. His lowest price in Book 1 was $80,000 and 25 made $250,000 or more.

The $780,000 received for two colts offered in the Sale’s first hour was a particularly notable result for long-time leading Queensland breeders the McAlpine family of Eureka Stud. The $500,000 paid by Spendthrift Australia for their Air’s Precious colt is the Stud’s best sale-ring result in more than eight decades of thoroughbred breeding.

Other vendors to post $400,000 or better for at least one Snitzel yearling were Amarina Farm, Burnewang North Pastoral, Element Hill, Fig Tree Thoroughbreds, Mill Park, Widden & Yarraman Park Studs. 

The Magic Millions buyers of Snitzel’s yearlings are a who’s who of local and international agents, owners, trainers & syndicators, among them Gai Waterhouse & Julian Blaxland (6 lots), China Horse Club (5 lots), Jadeskye & Gerald Ryan (3 lots), John Foote (3 lots, two with Tony Gollan), Belmont Bloodstock, Hong Kong Jockey Club, James Harron & Paul Perry (two lots each). 

Their judgment is likely to look even better in a few months’ time. Almost two-thirds of the 67 Australian Group & Listed stakes race wins by Snitzel’s progeny have come in the second half of the season, from February to July. That includes all but one of their 7 Group 1 victories – the exception being Shamus Award’s 2013 Cox Plate success.

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