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Successful French Foray

Our draft for the Tattersalls October Sale is really beginning to take shape now with a fortnight to go before they hit the road for Newmarket.

I hit the road myself for five days and travelled south with Emma Berry for the Osarus Yearling Sale at La Teste de Buch. It’s a long trip but always worthwhile as it’s a great sale to work, with some nice individuals available usually at a reasonable price.

We tried on a few staying types for John Berry but just missed out, and I was fortunate to be asked to buy a very nice filly for Zorka Wentworth (pictured right). From the first crop of the Haras de la Hetraie stallion George Vancouver, the filly is a half-sister to the G1 Doomben Cup winner Pornichet and was bred by Hubert Honoré at Haras d’Omméel.

Hubert was one of the first good contacts I made in France and has bred some good horses over the years. I always like visiting his farm in Normandy but I hadn’t previously seen this filly on my visits there.

However, she really caught my eye on the sales ground and, as a very well-related individual, she should have plenty of residual value as a broodmare.

As always it was good to catch up with some of our friends there, including Gwen Monneraie who we’ve done plenty of work with in the past and keeps a mare and foal for us at his farm in Normandy. It was also a good opportunity to see some of the stock of new French stallions and I was particularly interested to see the yearlings by Sri Putra, a son of Oasis Dream who stands at Haras du Saz. I bought a nice High Chaparral mare at Arqana’s December Sale who was in foal to Sri Putra and she has produced a really nice filly foal by him so I was pleased to see that his yearlings – many of which were in a nice draft from Haras du Saz – were also good models and, from those that I saw, seemed to be a very strong and even bunch.

As well as the filly I bought, we looked at a number of other yearlings by George Vancouver who seems to be getting a nice type too, and I’m pleased to be able to say the same about Dabirsim, who I’ve sent several mares to since he retired to stud.

The next few weeks will be frenetic as we count down to Tattersalls. We have two weeks in Newmarket then it’s back to France for the Arqana October Sale before a return to Newmarket for the Horses-in-Training Sale.

Only one of the yearlings in our October draft is one of our own pinhooks and I'm delighted with how she's come on over the past few months. You know when you're buying from Cheveley Park Stud you're buying into lovely families, and this filly (pictured left), by the hugely under-rated Medicean, has had a nice update this year via the very good two-year-old Spatial, whose dam Spacious is a half-sister to our filly's dam Rotunda. An extra bonus for me with Rotunda is that she's by Pivotal, who is now really coming into his own as a broodmare sire.

An impressive winner last month at the July Course, Spatial, who is trained by Sir Michael Stoute, is set to be tested at the highest level when she runs in the G1 Fillies' Mile at Newmarket the weekend before our filly is due to sell. We'll be keeping everything crossed!

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