An athletic grey Kodiac gelding topped the Hong Kong International Sale (May) at Sha Tin on Saturday, 23 May as all 11 lots on offer sold for a total of HK$31.7 million.
Kerm Din bought the standout Lot 11 for HK$6.5 million, having purchased the dual Group 1 winner Pakistan Star out of the same sale ring in 2016. The Irish-bred three-year-old is out of the Group 3-placed Coolnagree, from the same family as Hong Kong champion sprinter Lucky Nine.
The average for the 11 sold was HK$2.88 million, with a median of HK$2.5 million.
Lot 9, a well-connected Exceed And Excel gelding from the outstanding Alruccaba family, sold for HK$4 million to owner Derek Tam Lap-tak who also purchased Lot 8, an attractive Fastnet Rock gelding, for HK$3.2 million.
Mr. William Nader, Director of Racing Business and Operations at the Hong Kong Jockey Club, said: “We expected prices would be a little bit down today because of the economy and the global pandemic. There were no great surprises and we’re happy with the results.
“The most important point is that our interests are aligned to the owners. Our job is to select horses and prepare horses that can come in and produce a positive outcome for Hong Kong racing, so the true success of the sale will be known in the future.
“We’ve made a few changes to help fine tune the process and we are always aiming to get better year on year. It’s an ongoing process and we think the horses, having come in much earlier this year – in December – have acclimated better for the sale; we think the breeze-up last week was much better as a result and we hope this approach will manifest positively in the performances of the horses next season.”
The auction had been slated for 20 March but was postponed and rescheduled to May due to the COVID-19 situation. A second sale will be held at Sha Tin on 3 July.
The May sale offered horses purchased as yearlings in Europe and South America, while the upcoming July sale will offer mostly those bought in Australia and New Zealand, whose arrival in Hong Kong was delayed as a result of COVID-19 travel restrictions.
The upcoming July Sale is also likely to include three lots – sourced in South Africa and Ireland – which were withdrawn from the May sale in order to give them more time to mature.