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English King bound for Australia after record-breaking sale

English King is set to continue his career in Australia after being sold for 925,000 guineas at the Tattersalls Autumn Horses In Training Sale on Wednesday.

The three-year-old won the Lingfield Derby Trial on his seasonal bow for trainer Ed Walker back in June, setting a new course record as he beat subsequent St Leger second Berkshire Rocco by two and three-quarter lengths.

English King went on to claim a fast-finishing fifth in the Derby at Epsom, fourth in the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood and sixth in the Grand Prix de Paris last month for owner Bjorn Nielsen.

Bidding for English King opened at 400,000 guineas and after a battle between Ted Voute and Armando Duarte, with both bidders talking to their global contacts, Duarte eventually secured the colt for Ballymore Stables Australia and Paul Moroney Bloodstock.

Walker told www.tattersalls.com: “It has been a perfect storm. In a normal year Bjorn may have sold more yearlings and he may have been up for competing internationally with this horse from home, but when I tried to persuade Bjorn to keep him and aim for all these big races in Australia and Hong Kong and around the world, quite rightly Bjorn was worried as to whether we’d be able to race in those races? Will racing be happening? Will we be able to travel? Will the horse be able to travel?

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“Unfortunately it is a perfect storm. I would have loved to hang on to him, but a great result and Bjorn puts a lot into the game and it is great to get a big result like that.”

Looking back on English King’s campaign, Walker added: “We have had a great journey with him, and he made lock-down a bit more interesting! It was a wonderful season and it did not end as we hoped it would – I am still looking for my first Group One winner and I was certain he would be it, things just played against him.

“He had a couple of very hard races – you don’t break a 30-year-track record without giving your all, he had a hard race at Lingfield, and then a very hard race in the Derby when he ran an absolute blinder.

“His next two races weren’t up to that level, but he is not a big horse and those races probably took their toll.

“I am very grateful to the guys who bought him and wish them every bit of luck and I hope he wins the Melbourne Cup for them. I think he is tailor-made for the Cup – he’ll stay, he travels, he loves fast ground and I will be thrilled if he does that for them.”

Paul Moroney, via Duarte, said: “English King’s track record performance winning the Lingfield Derby Trial beating St Leger runner-up Berkshire Rocco was one of the most breathtakingly dominant performances anywhere this year. He is clearly a highly talented colt with loads of quality and we are thrilled to have secured him.

“Through their joint sire Camelot and with similar race records at the same stage, English King maps the same as last weekend’s Cox Plate winner Sir Dragonet.

“We’ve bought him for a syndicate headed by two New Zealand businessman and a collection of Ballymore Stables’ Australian clients.

“He’s certainly an exciting addition to the team and our first time playing at this very high level, so one could say the pressure is on for him to perform. He will head Down Under in December to join Mike (Moroney’s) Flemington stable early January and play things by ear.

“He will likely race in our autumn, but next spring will be the main focus going forward.”

English King topped the previous best price given for a colt at the sale, with Summer Sands fetching 625,000 guineas last year.

Aljazzi holds the record for the highest-priced lot ever sold at the Autumn Horses In Training Sale after she changed hands for 1,000,000 guineas in 2018.

English King up for sale

This year’s Derby second favourite English King is to be offered for sale as a “wildcard” at next week’s Tattersalls Autumn Horses in Training Sale.

Trained by Ed Walker, the son of Camelot sprang into the Classic picture with an impressive display in the Lingfield Derby Trial, beating subsequent St Leger runner-up Berkshire Rocco.

English King finished fifth at Epsom, beaten a little over six lengths. He was then a beaten favourite in the Gordon Stakes at Goodwood and finished sixth in the Grand Prix de Paris, behind Mogul in both races.

He is owned by Bjorn Nielsen, who also has star stayer Stradivarius.

“I genuinely believe English King is the best horse I have ever trained, and I will be very sorry to see him sold,” Walker told Tattersalls.

“He is an outstanding prospect for the future, having only raced six times, and has all the credentials to attract potential buyers from throughout the world.

“He is a horse who loves fast ground and, like all top-class horses, has the ability to quicken off a fast pace – as demonstrated in the Derby where he had the fastest final three furlongs of all.”

Galileo sister to Japan and Mogul becomes world’s most expensive yearling sold this year

A daughter of Galileo became the most expensive yearling sold in the world this year when fetching 3.4 million guineas on day three of Tattersalls Yearling Sales Book One at Newmarket.

Out of Shastye, the filly is a full-sister to Japan and Mogul, both trained by Aidan O’Brien.

She was bought by MV Magnier, of Coolmore and is set to join her elder siblings at Ballydoyle.

“It is a great result for everybody involved, she has been bought in partnership with Westerberg,” said Magnier.

“She is a very nice filly, she is a very nice mover, like Japan and Mogul. The mare produces great-looking stock and great racehorses, let’s hope she does it one more time.”

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Julian Dollar, general manager at Newsells Park Stud, the breeder and consignor, said: “Those are the easy ones to sell.

“The team lead by Mark Grace, the yearling manager, has done a wonderful job. He loves that filly so he will be very sad, but he has done a great job.”

Magnier also splashed out 2.8m guineas for a Galileo filly out of Prize Exhibit.

The dam is a full-sister to this year’s Sussex Stakes winner Mohaather.

“She a very nice filly, Aidan and all the lads liked her,” said Magnier.

“Breeder David Nagle has been saying for a very long time how good a filly she is.

“We are very lucky to have been able to buy her with Michael, Derek, Georg Von Opel and everyone; we are lucky to have her now. She has a great page, she comes from a very good nursery.”

Godolphin got in on the act when paying 1.8m guineas for a filly by Kingman out of Sante.

She was bred by Michael O’Leary’s Gigginstown House Stud, and sold by Eddie O’Leary’s Lynn Lodge Stud.

“She was always a queen and made a queen’s price there,” said Eddie O’Leary.

“I hope she is very lucky for Sheikh Mohammed, she is a smashing filly.”

Godolphin dominates opening day of October Yearling Sales

A Dubawi colt out of a daughter of Attraction and a Frankel colt out of Attraction herself – both sold to Godolphin – were among the top lots on the first day of the Tattersalls October Yearling Sales in Newmarket.

The Dubawi colt cost Sheikh Mohammed’s operation 2.1 million guineas with the Frankel going for 1.1 million.

The Frankel youngster is a full-brother to the Mark Johnston-trained Elarqam, a six-times winner, including at Group Two level, while the Dubawi colt is out of Cushion, who was trained by John Gosden in her early days before going to America.

Attraction was owned by the late Duke of Roxburgh and the yearlings were bred by his Floors Stud.

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An emotional Duchess of Roxburgh said: “This family means a huge amount to us, and Attraction is an absolute heroine, we are all very emotionally attached to her. The Duke adored this Dubawi colt as a foal, so I hope he is watching upstairs!

“I am thrilled for my late husband, who did nothing but dream of Attraction and she has really done us proud. They were two really lovely horses, and they have been since they were foals. My husband always thought they were two of the best he had ever produced – and he has been proven right.”

Of the Frankel colt, Floors Stud manager Chris Gillon added: “It’s absolutely brilliant, absolutely fantastic.

“We loved him as a foal and he came perfect all the way through his prep. He got down here and everything went so well. He is a beautiful-looking colt. He never stopped (having viewings) and (was) so popular with everyone. Just to see him go through the ring and do that – it is the icing on the cake.

“The late Duke saw him as a foal and he loved him and thought he was the best yet that Attraction had had, but for the colt to come here and do exactly that – the Duke will be up there smiling, that’s for sure.

“It is brilliant for everyone involved, the late Duke, the Duchess, everyone, it is brilliant and we couldn’t ask for any more.”

Lot 162 is a half-sister to Derby winner Golden Horn
Lot 162 is a half-sister to Derby winner Golden Horn (Julian Herbert/PA)

Godolphin also went to 2 million guineas for a filly by Frankel out of Fleche d’Or, which makes her a half-sister to Derby and Arc winner Golden Horn.

Anthony Stroud was buying on behalf of Godolphin and said: “She’s very athletic and has a wonderful pedigree – she’s a sister to Golden Horn and by Frankel, who is a wonderful sire. She’s a beautiful mover.

“(Sheikh Mohammed) is the force behind it all, he’s the energy and the drive. He loves it.”

Godolphin purchased three of the top four lots, with a half-brother to Classic winner Galileo Gold earning the distinction of top lot at 2.7 million guineas.

Selling as lot 174 and consigned by Houghton Bloodstock, the Kingman colt was purchased by Oliver St Lawrence Bloodstock.