Magic Mare To Attract Millions

Date: 28 May 2024

Magic Mare To Attract Millions

NZ Herald's Michael Guerin reports:

Champion New Zealand mare Imperatriz may not be allowed to go to her own public auction on the Gold Coast today but will be allowed to watch.

The 10-time Group 1 winner will be offered for sale at the Magic Millions sale around 6.30pm (NZ time), with an estimated price expected of between A$4 million and A$7 million.

Imperatriz was retired in April after a stunning 15-month burst in which she developed into one of the world’s best sprinters, dominating Victorian sprinting like no New Zealand speedster ever before her.

Her post-campaign veterinary examination showed signs of wear and tear, and while she could race again, Te Akau racing boss David Ellis decided to call time on a career that needed no more embellishment.

Being a syndicate-owned mare, Imperatriz was going to have to be sold at a public auction to establish the market price for her owners, but today’s offering comes with a twist, as Imperatriz won’t be on the Gold Coast.

She will instead be in her home paddock in Waikato, where she has been visited by most prospective buyers in recent weeks, with the appropriate veterinary due diligence undertaken.

“We’ve had a lot of people to the farm to look at her, so while we will be over here, she will be in her usual paddock back home,” said Ellis from the Gold Coast last night.

But that doesn’t mean Imperatriz will miss out on the historic remote sale and the huge numbers being thrown around 2300km away.

“We have a young lady who looks after her named Faith Pollock who is going to go down and give her a cuddle around the time she is being sold,” Ellis told the Herald.

“She’s going to take her iPad, too, and let Imperatriz watch the sale so she can see what all the fuss is about,” said the Te Akau boss with a laugh.

While Imperatriz may care more about the cuddles than the cash, many in the racing industry can’t wait to see who pays what to secure the superstar speedster.

“I’m thinking somewhere between A$4m and A$6m,” Ellis said. “But as everybody who goes to horse sales knows, it only takes two people determined to buy the same horse and things can change quite quickly.”

While any thoroughbred breeder who would love to buy Imperatriz to breed from, or even race again, the reality is there are only a handful thought to be in the market.

The major Australian breeding operations such as Yulong and Coolmore are obvious potential buyers who have previously paid huge money for trophy mares.

North American newbie John Stewart has been spending and tweeting up big in the past six months and has said he would consider paying A$6m for Imperatriz and then even putting her back in work if she was deemed sound and healthy enough.

Japanese breeders led by the Shadai Group, who own the giant Northern Farms operation, have dabbled successfully at the top end of the Australasian broodmare market, so are another massive player who could buy Imperatriz without surprising.

Yulong would be favourite in any potential buyer market but they already own Imperatriz’s dam Berimbau, as well as a weanling full brother to Imperatriz (I Am Invincible), paying A$1.8m for the pair in Sydney last year.

Whether that increases their appetite to own the great mare, or they think they have that bloodline covered could be a key price driver.

Those who want to join Imperatriz in watching her sale live can do so via the Magic Millions website.

Selling the champ

? Champion New Zealand mare Imperatriz will be offered for sale at public auction on the Gold Coast today.

? She won’t be at the Magic Millions sale complex as she is stayed in New Zealand.

? Educated industry estimates range from A$4 million to A$7 million for Imperatriz, who is likely to be put on foal rather than race again.

? The sale should be around 6.30pm (NZ time).


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