London Selected Day One Complete

Published: October 13, 2018 04:39 pm EDT

Stonebridge Excel fetched the highest price during the opening session of the 2018 London Selected Yearling Sale.

Selling as Hip #24, trotting-bred filly Stonebridge Excel sold for $187,000 to Bill Donovan of Delray Beach, Florida with Rick Zeron signing the sales slip. Stonebridge Excel (Muscle Mass - Armbro Vanquish) is a half-sister to world champion, multiple stakes winner and stallion Manofmanymissions.

"She's a really, really nice filly. I looked her over, Bill Donovan looked her over...he was very interested in her. I was too. I watched her videos and looked her over and thought she was just outstanding. A great big long body, and I think by having the Muscle Mass out of the mother instead of the Yankee Glide, it's going to enhance this filly's career."

Zeron spoke the importance of having a stallion like Muscle Mass back in Ontario given the success the stallion has had on the Grand Circuit this year.

"It's an honour to have him back. There were a couple of Muscle Masses selling in Kentucky [at the Lexington Selected Yearling Sale] and Ake Svanstedt just looked at me once and said 'I wish he was back in New York' so I'm extremely happy to have him back in Canada."

On the pacing side, David Menary was the most interested in Hip 66, Shelton Seelster. A yearling from the first crop of former Menary pupil Hes Watching out of a sister to Little Brown Jug winner Mr Feelgood, Shelton Seelster was the highest priced pacing-bred yearling of the opening session, fetching a bid of $130,000.

A total of four yearlings hit the six-figure sales mark on Saturday. Pacing-bred filly Shiraz Seelster (Bettors Delight - Shakai Hanover) was a $107,000 purchase by Millar Farms of Stouffville, Ont. The bidding wasn't chilly on Stonebridge Icicle (Bettors Delight - Glacier Express) as Blake MacIntosh went to $100,000 to successfully obtain the sharp yearling filly.

In front of a capacity crowd at the Metroland Media Agriplex, a total of 100 yearlings sold during the first session for gross sales of $2,870,000. That number substantially tops the $2.48 million gross from the 2017 sale with fewer yearlings sold. The average for the first day came in at $28,700, up 31 percent from the first-day 2017 average of $21,793.

Among stallions with multiple yearlings offered in the first session, Muscle Mass boasted the biggest average. His five yearlings averaged $67,000, while Bettors Delight was best among pacers with 10 yearlings averaging $55,600.

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