Friday, September 14, 2012

Sales In Action

The Yearling Sales are unbelievable!  So many people from all over the world coming to one place to look at the Thoroughbred yearlings.  All with the hope of a magic touch in their selections.

At Warrendale Sales, we've had many big name owners, trainers, bloodstock agents and pinhookers come through and look at our horses.  Adele Dilschneider, who owns many horses in conjunction with Claiborne Farm such as the Breeders Cup Classic winner and only horse to beat the great Zenyatta (Blame), came through several times as she narrowed down her list.  We've had Barclay Tagg, Gretchen and Roy Jackson (Barbaro's owner), Doug Cauthen (brother to Steve Cauthen who rode Affirmed in his triple crown conquest), Todd Pletcher, the list goes on and on. 

My job is to greet the people who come in to view the horses, let our grooms and handlers know which horses to get out for them and find a spot to view the horses.  Sometimes it can get really crazy with a lot of people coming to see our horses and a lack of room and timing things so we have enough showmen to walk the horses.  While this is going on, we may have vets coming in to perform a vet check on a horse for a potential buyer.  So we're juggling people and horses all day long.  I come home exhausted every night! 

Adele Dilschneider and her bloodstock agent, Jane Dunn, view one of our horses.

Kitty Taylor, the principle owner of Warrendale Sales keeps her eyes on the action as several groups are out viewing their selected horses.

One of our showmen stand a horse for a potential buyer.
I've been amazed at the people who come through.  We've had many Japanese and Russians come through.  I even had Jaguar Hope's owner/trainer come through one day!!  I was so excited about seeing him and being able to tell him face to face how Jag was involved in the War Horse movie.  That totally made my day!

While we are showing, we also have horses that are preparing to go into the ring.  They get the royal beauty parlor treatment so they are spit shining spectacular.  We use all the horse show tricks to whiten up any white markings and shine up their mane and tails.  They have been brushed so often that their dapples gleam in the light. 

A Bernardini/Caroni filly gets shined up before she heads to the sales pavilion.
All of the staff work very hard and very long hours at the sales.  We still work and show horses while the sales are going on but we keep 1/2 an eye on the television monitors as one of our horses goes through the ring.  At one point, one of our horses was the subject of a bidding war.  This Big Brown colt brought the gavel down at $825,000.  He was the 2nd highest bid for the day.  We all watched as he went through the ring on our tv monitor in the barn.

The barn crew watching the action in the sales pavilion as one of our horses goes through the ring.

Big Brown/Cold Awakening colt that sold for $825,000 and was the 2nd highest price at the sales that day.  He was bought by Demi O'Byrne and will probably be trained by Todd Pletcher.
We were pretty proud that our horse brought so much money! 

Well I have to head back to the sales which continues through the 21st.


  1. Having spent a couple hours at the Sept. sales a few years ago, I know the atmosphere you're talking about. It's very exciting, and the horses are SO beautiful! I don't know how anybody picks them from a barnful of gorgeous horseflesh and a book full of black type. They pretty much all looked good to me. :-)

    How is it you got the gig with Warrendale? Did you know Ms. Taylor through the photography business?

  2. What a terrific time you are having and thanks for sharing it with us! Great pictures (of course ;o) and LOVE the Big Brown colt.

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