It was a red-letter day for Fairdale Stud principal Duncan Fell at Karaka yesterday.

The Palmerston North breeder offered lot 162, the Savabeel colt out of Iffraaj mare Saoirse, through Sam Beatson's Riversley Park draft and he was thrilled with the $500,000 result.

Bought by Te Akau principal David Ellis, Fell had offered the colt as a yearling at Karaka earlier this year where he failed to meet his $200,000 reserve.

Fell thought a lot of the colt and decided to target him towards New Zealand Bloodstock's Ready To Run Sale.


"He was an outstanding yearling," Fell said. "There were a lot of Savabeels in the sale and I thought that he might have just been sneaking under the radar.

"I absolutely loved him as a type and knew that he would make a really nice ready to run horse, so I was prepared to back my judgment and thankfully it has paid off.

"Sam Beatson has done a wonderful job, he breezed up beautifully, and he has turned him out in immaculate condition."

Fell said it is one of the biggest days in Fairdale Stud's history and unquestionably the biggest in his tenure at the head of the family-owned farm.

"It would be Fairdale's best result in 35 years I would say, since back in the Trentham days," Fell recalled.

"My parents sold a filly for $550,000 or $600,000, but it has certainly been a long time and it's the most I have sold a horse for on my own account."

With the level of success he achieved on Wednesday, Fell said he would look to the sale in future years if he has the right horse.

"I haven't had a Ready to Runner for five or six years, so it's unchartered waters for me in some ways," he said.


"I am in the position now where I can back my judgment, where in previous years I have had to sell. The result today certainly gives me the confidence to do it. If I have got the right horse I will definitely be targeting the ready to run sale."

The Savabeel colt was one of three yearlings Fell offered at Karaka in January and all were bought by Ellis.

"David will be hoping I am a good breeder," Fell quipped.

"One of them [Cool Aza Beel] is a Savabeel he bought off me in January. He won the first two-year-old race of the season and he is the favourite for a Listed race [Fasttrack Insurance 5K Bonus 2YO Stakes, 1100m] at Pukekohe on Saturday.

"It has all worked out so far for both parties."

Ellis was delighted and said the colt was one of two purchases he will form into a stallion syndicate.

His other purchase was lot 154, the Pierro colt out of Redoute's Choice mare Rose of Pania, out of Riversley Park's draft, which he secured for $340,000.

"I said to Karyn [Fenton-Ellis, his wife] yesterday morning, 'why don't we buy the best two colts in the sale and put them into a stallion syndicate?'

"Colts by Pierro and Savabeel that can win at the top level, they are worth $15 million to $20 million.

"My team of Mark Walker, Jamie Richards and myself thought that these two were the best two in the sale and we are delighted to have them at Te Akau Racing."

Ellis noted the Savabeel colt has something in common with 10-time group one winner Melody Belle, who he purchased at Karaka as a yearling for $57,500.

"The Savabeel colt is the first colt out of an Iffraaj mare, the last first foal out of an Iffraaj mare that I bought was Melody Belle," he said.

"I had to pay a bit more for this colt, but I just love Savabeel and the stable has had huge success with him.

"This year I am breeding to him myself and he is one of the greatest sires we have had in New Zealand."

Ellis said he had already sold 25 per cent of the syndicate but was looking forward to offering existing and future clients the opportunity to invest in the two colts.

Beatson's Riversley dominates in top sales

Sam Beatson's Riversley Park dominated the first day of New Zealand Bloodstock's Ready To Run sale at Karaka yesterday, selling seven of the top 10 lots.

Beatson was delighted with the day's results, particularly topping the day with lot 162, the Savabeel colt he offered on behalf of Fairdale Stud's Duncan Fell, who was bought by Te Akau principal David Ellis for $500,000.

At the close of day one of the sale, 112 lots were sold for a sale aggregate of $10.8 million and an average of $96,335, with a clearance rate of 63 per cent.

Beatson was also pleased with a number of other results, with some expected, while others weren't.

"The Super Easy [lot 192] at the end of the day really surprised us. We knew he was popular, but to make that sort of money was huge," he said.

"The Headwater [lot 144], he had been very popular as well, but to get over $400,000 was brilliant."

The Headwater gelding was one of three two-year-olds Beatson sold for $420,000, and the trio are set to do their future racing in Hong Kong.

Hong Kong bloodstock agent Willie Leung placed the winning bid for the Headwater gelding and he said he will be raced by the owners of dual group one winner Mr Stunning, who Leung purchased as a yearling at Karaka for $250,000.

"He will be very suitable for Hong Kong and I know there are some other HK trainers who were on him, so I paid a bit more than I thought I would have to.

"I thought the prices have been pretty good, there is not as big a quantity as in the past, but the quality is good and I hope I can get a few more," Leung said.

The sales continue today at Karaka.

- NZ Racing Desk