Ferguson a committed Savabeel follower
7 February 2017
International thoroughbred identity John Ferguson was quickly won over by Savabeel during his first visit to New Zealand. “Sir Peter Vela has been trying to get me here for 20 years or more and I’m thrilled to have made it,” said the chief executive and racing manager for Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s Godolphin operation.
Under the Godolphin banner, Ferguson signed for three fillies by the WS stallion during the Premier session – one out of Banchee for $570,000, the daughter of Sitting Pretty for $350,000 and the other from Croix du Sud for $120,000. “I arrived 10 days before the sale and I was able to have a look around some farms and went from Taupo to Queenstown, it’s been wonderful,” the Newmarket-based Ferguson said.
The Savabeel filly from the WS draft that caught his eye was the daughter of the O’Reilly mare Sitting Pretty. The dam is a half-sister to four-time Group One winner Metal Bender (Danasinga).
Meanwhile, the daughter of Savabeel and the Gr.2 Angus Armanasco Stakes winner Shopaholic (Pins) made $270,000. She was snapped up by Peachester Lodge, of Queensland.
Early in the session, the Hong Kong Jockey Club took a shine to the O’Reilly filly out if Lady Chaparral and secured her for $220,000. She is the second foal out of the mare who won four races, including the Gr.3 Tauranga Stakes while the Club replicated that purchase price for an O’Reilly colt out of Promenade, a half-sister to the multiple Group One winner Legs. Queensland trainer Bevan Laming, with Cambridge agent John White, also went to $220,000 to secure a Savabeel filly out of Pasadena. The dam is a full-sister to the multiple Group One winner and producer Alamosa.