A handsome bay colt by exciting first season sire Merchant Navy topped Day Two of the 2020 Magic Millions National Weanling Sale at the Gold Coast on Friday when selling for $210,000.
The result marked the highest price achieved by any first season sire at this sale.
Consigned by Rothwell Park Thoroughbreds, the day’s top seller is the first foal of the Sydney winning Rip Van Winkle mare Awoke, who was fourth in a Group I ATC Flight Stakes.
She has an elite New Zealand pedigree being a half-sister to Group III winner Cismontane from the family of Group I winners Sirstaci, Nimue and Smiling Like.
Fergal Connolly of Valiant Stud outlasted all other bidders to secure the colt as a pinhook prospect adding her to his previous purchases which included a Fastnet Rock filly from Antillanca for $160,000.
“We’re very excited to have a Fastnet Rock filly going forward and this quality Merchant Navy colt,” said Connolly, who worked previously at Segenhoe (they bred and sold Merchant Navy) before establishing his own Valiant Stud enterprise.
“It is so good to actually work with Merchant Navy again being so close to the family having worked at Segenhoe for years. Having him foal there and watching his racing career, I’ve been very close to the whole process.
“They are very good solid, well conformed types. This colt moved very well and I thought he’d appeal to so many people with his family being very up to date and modern. He’s a standout colt for me with the way he moved.”
In a tough market where the clearance rate hovered at 72%, while the average fell by 34% to $41,435, Merchant Navy also achieved pleasing results with a colt from Receipt making $75,000, a filly from Majestic Faith sold for $60,000 and a filly from Around the Clock made $50,000.