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Hold Me Closer sells for $230,000

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Second-highest grossing Inglis Digital sale caps successful financial year

The dam of Daily Bugle topped the latest Inglis Digital auction.
The dam of Daily Bugle topped the latest Inglis Digital auction. Picture: Racing Photos

The second-highest grossing Inglis Digital auction ever conducted has on Wednesday evening with the most expensive lot being Danehill Dancer (Danehill) mare Hold Me Closer who was sold in foal to Brazen Beau (I Am Invincible) to Chris and Jane Barham for $230,000.

Offered by Tarcoola Stud, Hold Me Closer is the dam of Group 3 winner Thought Of That (So You Think) and the three-time stakes placed three-year-old colt Daily Bugle (Press Statement). 

"Hold Me Closer, Peter O'Brien had her as a yearling, loved her, rated her very highly and he's obviously someone we respect greatly so we were more than happy to purchase her, largely on his recommendation," Chris Barham said. 

"She'll go to Segenhoe now and foal down, then we might send her to Zoustar later in the year but we'll make that decision in a little while.

"She's our first online purchase and we've been on tenterhooks all day trying to secure her but we've really enjoyed it. We've been giggling all day about it to be honest, it's been fun.''

Tarcoola's Ken Williams added: "I bred her, sold her as a yearling, bought her back after her racing days to breed with her and now sold her again, so it's been quite the journey.

"We've sold with Inglis Digital before but not at this level. We were going to sell this mare at The Chairman's Sale but decided against it and I think she's made as much tonight as she would have at Chairman's, yet we've saved on costs in terms of transport and staff at sales etc.''

Two lots sold for $200,000, three-year-old colt Ashgrove (Dundeel) who was bought by his trainer Gollan Racing and the Sullivan Bloodstock-offered broodmare Speedy Kitty (Exceed And Excel), who was offered in foal to Swettenham Stud's Toronado (High Chaparral) and sold to Kia Ora Stud.

Ashgrove, who has won one of his eight career starts to date, will line up in Saturday's Group 3 Winx Guineas (1600m) for Gollan, for which he is a $12 chance with TAB.

"It was really a win for everybody – the majority owner wanted to test the market and was happy with the price, we were happy to be able to retain him and other stable clients are happy to be able to get involved in a horse as good as him,'' Gollan said.

"The $200,000 was our last bid, we knew there was interest from Singapore and other places so we almost lost him but it's great to have been able to retain the horse in the stable and hopefully he can repay his new and existing owners with an immediate dividend on Saturday.''

Kia Ora's Shane Wright was always keen to buy Speedy Kitty but was especially pleased to watch her American Pharoah (Pioneerof The Nile) half-brother Cool Kaap win impressively on debut at Eagle Farm earlier in the afternoon.

"It's a Kia Ora family and a family we think has an extremely bright future. We bred her and sold her as a yearling so it's great to get her back to the farm. She'll foal down to Toronado, who is going unbelievably well, and then she's likely to visit Captivant.''

There was also a successful Arrowfield draft, which saw 31 of the 32 entries sell for $617,100. 

Jon Freyer of Arrowfield said: "We're very happy, delighted really. There were some tremendous sales we were particularly happy with, there was a lot of competition on a majority of the horses and many made much more than we had really budgeted for or expected.''

A total of 11 horses sold for $100,000 or more in the June (Late) Sale, taking the overall number of horses to realise six figures through Inglis Digital to 243.

The June (Late) Sale grossed $6,428,750, taking the 2021/22 financial year aggregate to $93,177,349, ensuring a 91% market share in the Australian equine digital sales market.

It's a 32% increase from the 2020/21 financial year, which saw turnover reach $70,396,262.

"It's been a fabulous 12 months, astonishing really when you consider we've sold Funstar for a world record online price of $2.7m as well as other outstanding results like Every Rose ($1.3m), Joyous Legend ($1.025m), Fasika ($920,000), Archanna ($900,000), Members Joy ($800,000), there's been some wonderful highlights,'' Inglis Digital's Business Manager Nick Melmeth said.

"Individual results aside, we've also set a world record for an online sale at $10,816,499 earlier this year, the team has worked really hard to ensure that Inglis Digital provides the highest standards of service to the market across the board.

"A huge amount of work has been done by a lot of people to get the platform to the point where it commands the respect of the market, so to have it where it is now, that so many major domestic and international participants are enjoying its benefits, is very satisfying.

"It's been a rewarding 12 months for the vendors but also an extremely successful period for the buyers – Inglis Digital graduates have won 1 in 7 Australian races this season so buyers know that when they purchase off the platform, they're giving themselves a strong chance of enjoying success.''

Entries for the July (Early) Sale are now open and will remain so until midnight on Wednesday July 6.

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