Fastnet Rock Colt Sold for $NZ1 Million at Karaka

The magic Millions Yearling Sale is not the only place to buy well-bred thoroughbred racehorses.

The National Yearling Sale at Karaka, some way south of Auckland, also peddles some flesh. This year, a son of Fastnet Rock from Diademe fetched $1 million Kiwi dollars and went to Mark Pilkington, who outbid Trent Busuttin.

The colt is the first from Diademe. Diademe’s last win wasthe Group 1 Breeders Stakes (1600 m weight-for-age) at Te Aroha. She was running out of the stables of Murray Baker, who also had the number two finisher in Sports Illustrated on that autumn day in April of 2015. In her next race, she did not do so well at Randwick, where she was tried in the Group 1 Queen Of The Turf, a race that almost appeared to be a head-to-head contest between Gai Waterhouse and Chris Waller, those two accounting for seven of the field of 15.

Having just burned through $1 million to secure the colt, Pilkington indicated that the colt would race in Australia, hopefully, with better outcomes than his mum. Fastnet Rock, on the other hand, did well at Flemington, Caulfield and Randwick, including Group 1 wins in two consecutive outings, the Lightning Stakes and the Oakleigh Plate.

Pilkington further indicted that Lindsay Park clients hold the deed to the colt. Sire Fastnet Rock also produced Merchant Navy, the recent winner of the Group 1 Coolmore Stud in 2017.

“I’ve had a bit of luck recently with Merchant Navy so love the breed,” Pilkington said.“The Lindsay Park boys, they got Tulip here and then Long Leaf at the weekend is a Fastnet Rock too so it made sense.“He’s (referring to the new colt) out of a gun mare, he’s a lovely horse and it’s really a case of appreciating the obvious.”

Pilkington said he was expecting a seven-figure price tag, but would have preferred to get the colt for less.

“The only thing about him that didn’t grab me was the price – most of them are better sold than bought – I thought that was about his mark price wise,” Pilkington said.

If he had used Aussie dollars, the youngster would have set Pilkington back just $906,000, so he might have a true bargain.

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