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Florida 2YOs: US$16m Forestry Colt
Irish veterinarian Demi O'Byrne (representing the partnership that includes Michael Tabor & John Magnier) out-bid John Ferguson (who represents Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum) to win "the greatest bidding duel in thoroughbred auction history" & pay US$16 million (an all-time auction world record) during heart-stopping action early this morning (Australian time) for a Forestry colt (the 2nd foal out of winning Unbridled mare Magical Masquerade) at the Fasig-Tipton Select Sale of 2YOs-In-Training at Calder Race Course in Florida, reported thoroughbredtimes.com. The colt (consigned by Hartley/DeRenzo Thoroughbreds) passed both the record US$5.2 million price for a 2YO (set by Ferguson last year at the same sale for a Tale Of The Cat colt) & the all-time auction record of US$13.1-million paid in 1985 (at the Keeneland July selected yearling sale) by British Bloodstock Agency (acting for Robert Sangster) for the yearling subsequently named Seattle Dancer. O'Byrne declared: "He'd better be good! Time will tell. He breezed awfully well & he's a good-looking horse with a good pedigree." The colt had drilled a furlong in 9.8sec on Sunday during the pre-sale breeze-up. Under-bidder Ferguson commented: "He was an obvious horse, breezed well & good looking, We had a game plan & unfortunately it didn't work." The Florida-bred colt previously sold for US$425,000 at the 2005 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July yearling sale. His dam Magical Masquerade is a daughter of multiple Gr2 winner Nannerl & a half-sister to multiple Gr2 winner Magicalmysterycat (who sold for US$1.7 million at the 2001 Keeneland January Horses-Of-All-Ages sale, 28 months after selling for US$1.1 million at the 1998 Keeneland November breeding stock sale). Consignor Dean DeRenzo summed up: "I had no clue what the horse was going to bring. I tried to keep that out of my head. It's exhilarating. I just want to see him win the Kentucky Derby now."