The Magic Millions sale started the season well in 2018 when a colt, now named Rome, went through the ring as Lot 647 with the hammer dropping at $1,050,000. The sale also saw Bhima sell its highest priced filly of the season when a filly now named Ajaayeb was purchased by Emirates Park for $875,000.
We believe trust in the bhima brand is important. This year, we will be focusing on ways to make the buying process more straightforward and transparent.
“It was a very successful sale, we took a strong draft that fits what buyers are looking for and we were rewarded,” said Mike Fleming. “Magic Millions is a great sale for good sorts by first season sires and more precocious types. That said, the sale record is pretty good with Oaks and Derby winners in recent times, and there is so much depth to the market you can get away with taking a bigger range of types than in the past. It’s early in the year though, so more forward, mature types will be better received.”
On the track in 2017/18, Bhima graduates were excelling. Super Too continued adding to her speedy performances, breaking 1000m records at Moonee Valley & Randwick. Tough sprinter Kaepernick finally earned a well-deserved Group victory in the Group 3 Southern Cross. Heavens Above, already a Group 1 winner, added a Group 1 placing to her record in the 2018 Queen of the Turf. While Sircconi put another Group win to his name when taking out the Group 3 Moonga Stakes this spring.
However, the top Bhima graduate continues to be the aptly named I Am A Star, who took home the Group 2 Stocks Stakes in 2017 and 2018 in addition to her G1 Myer Stakes victory. She was forced to miss the second half of last season but has come back into elite form with three straight group wins including her second Group 2 Stocks Stakes, the Group 2 Let’s Elope Stakes and Listed Ladies Day Vase.
Yet, as enjoyable as it is to look back at previous successes, Bhima has its focus firmly on the future.“Bhima is dedicated to growing our brand as an independent consignor and we already have a great track record of selling top racehorses,” said Fleming. “This year, we will be focusing on ways to make the buying process more straightforward and transparent. We believe trust in the Bhima brand is important, and the way to grow trust is to continue selling top horses, produced by excellent breeders, through a sales process that values integrity above all else.”
With that in mind, Bhima is sending another top-notch group of yearlings to the Gold Coast in January.One of those offerings is a Redoute’s Choice colt who lives up to his dam’s name – Purely Spectacular. Fleming thinks the colt will appeal to buyers looking for an early type.
“The Purely Spectacular colt is bred by Jonathan Munz’s GSA Bloodstock,” said Fleming. “He has an excellent attitude and handles everything we throw at him. He is a forward, good looking horse and looks the type that will be ready to go when the first 2-year-old races start next season.”
Another offering is a colt that has already made headlines as a weanling sales topper. Purchased in partnership with Kia Ora, the Fastnet Rock colt out of Benalmadena was a $300,000 purchase at the Great Southern Sale, and has only improved with age.
“This colt has enormous presence and carries himself well,” said Fleming. “By one of the best proven sires in Australia, he is a strong medium-sized son of Fastnet Rock with a great head.“When I first saw him as a weanling I thought he was a real throw back to Danehill. He looks like he’ll be an early horse with natural strength and muscle.”
Not to be outdone by the colts, Bhima also has what looks like an exciting group of fillies, with the Hinchinbrook filly from Be Inspired a standout.Bred and owned by James Chapman’s Jamieson Park in New Zealand, Fleming has declared the filly will turn heads every time she leaves the stall.
“She is a very forward mature filly, by a sire that sadly is no longer with us. She is a quality filly and has good size and strength. If her presence doesn’t catch your attention, watching her move should. She’s simply a good filly, very uncomplicated. These are usually the ones that make good racehorses,” he said.
The final early prep standout is the Fastnet Rock daughter of El Laoob. A stakes winner herself, the American-bred El Laoob is the dam of two stakes winners.
The mare has also been a hit in the sales ring already with her 2006 Group 3 winning daughter Pachattack selling for US$1.2 million.
Adding to this filly’s appeal is also that she comes from the proven Raffles Racing breeding program.“This filly has a great outlook on life, she has a very laid back attitude that most good horses have,” Fleming said.
“She is a mature, forward filly with great presence and great action from a proven international family. With the success lately of progeny out of U.S.-bred mares, it won’t be hard for people to look at her twice.”
With a proven track record of selling top racehorses and commitment to a transparent sales process, trust in the Bhima brand will hit a new score with buyers and breeders alike. l