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Deauville Sales report: Half-sister to King's Best leads the way at Ff9m.

THE Agence Francaise August Yearling Sale got off to a buoyant start at Deauville on Saturday night, when the average rose by 27 per cent on the corresponding session in 1999.

A total of 50 of the 61 yearlings to go through the ring were recorded as sold, for an aggregate of Ff60.71 million (around pounds 5.83m), which was up around eight per cent on the same session 12 months ago. The average was Ff1,214,200 (around pounds 116,600).

Agence Francaise managing director Philippe Augier was delighted with the solid start to the five-day sale. He said: "This was very encouraging and satisfactory. Buyers from all parts of the world were active-and the French more than usual at this session.

"Some of our established and important clients, like Maktoum Al Maktoum, Sheikh Mohammed, Wafic Said and Coolmore, have yet to show their hand. So, once again, we should wait to make a comparison until after the second session. But the first session proved the progression of recent years has been confirmed."

The high point of the night came when the Suprina agency-run by Patricia Boutin-went to Ff9 million (about pounds 864,550) for a Diesis half-sister to 2,000 Guineas winner King's Best and Arc heroine Urban Sea. The filly, offered from Haras d'Etreham, was bought on behalf of Chryss O'Reilly and Baron Edouard de Rothschild. A trainer has yet to be named, but Pascal Bary is believed to be a possibility.

Eight yearlings made over Ff2 million (pounds 192,120), and 19 went for at least Ff1 million (pounds 96,060).

Sheikh Hamdan's Shadwell Estate paid the second highest price of the sale when Angus Gold went to Ff4.2 million (pounds 403,460) for a colt by Darshaan out of Arctique Royale who won the Irish 1,000 Guineas and is dam or grand-dam of seven stakes winners including Cerulean Sky, Russian Snows and Truly A Dream. This one was offered by Knocktoran Stud.

Shadwell also bought two other offspring of Darshaan. A bid of Ff1.5 million (pounds 140,090) secured Haras du Thenney's colt Harbour King, a half-brother to smart Harbour Island out of high-class two- year-old Zinarelle. And Ff1.4 million (pounds 134,490) was paid for the sole Darshaan filly in the catalogue. From Haras de Mezeray, she is closely related to very smart Mutamam from the family of Mtoto.

All three Shadwell buys will be sent to Ireland before being allocated to trainers.

Patrick Barbe, acting for a Japanese client, paid Ff3 million (pounds 288,180) for a daughter of Zafonic from Eric Puerari's Haras des Capucines. And agent Sally Carey spent a total of Ff6.1 million (pounds 585,980) on three yearlings, including Ff2.8 million (pounds 268,970) for Haras des Capucines' filly by Indian Ridge out of 1983 Prix de Diane winner Escaline, dam of five stakes performers.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Author:Stoneham, Desmond
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Aug 21, 2000
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