The popularity of 2-year-old sales around the country has been on the upswing the last few years. The quality of the horses being offered in the spring sales in Florida, California, and Maryland has improved significantly providing owners with the chance of buying a horse that can make an immediate impact on the racetrack at a high level.
Most of the 2-year-old sales have an under tack show where prospective buyers have the opportunity to watch the horses on the track in a timed workout of one or two furlongs. If you can’t be there in person, the videos of the works become part of the online sales catalog.
A perfect example of why 2-year-old purchases are so attractive is the 2018 Robert B. Lewis (G3), which was run on Feb. 3 at Santa Anita and carried a purse of $150,000, along with Kentucky Derby qualifying points. The top three finishers on that day were all purchased at the March 2017 Ocala Breeders Sale for 2-year-olds.
The winner Lombo, the son of the young sire Graydar, sold for only $75,000. Eight months later, he debuted in a maiden special weight at Del Mar, the week after the Breeders’ Cup. His current record stands at 4: 2-0-1 with earnings of $129,225 and 10 Kentucky Derby points. Lombo is already a graded stakes winner and a likely stallion prospect, since he is a son of a promising young sire. His next start is scheduled to come in another Derby prep at Santa Anita, the $400,000 San Felipe (G2) on March 10.
After the big victory, his trainer Michael Pender described the talented horse, “He’s definitely a high-octane horse. Apparently, Graydar had some of the same characteristics. He’s just a big kid, but he’s starting to figure it out. When he does really figure it out, I think he’ll be really dangerous.”
Ayacara (GB), who finished second in the Lewis, is the son of Violence, another up and coming sire. Ayacara was hammered at $145,000 at OBS March and debuted in short order at Del Mar on July 29. He broke his maiden in his second start and then ran fourth behind Bolt d’Oro in the FrontRunner (G1). This versatile colt next got second in a stake at Golden Gate Fields on the Tapeta surface before the Robert B. Lewis. He is scheduled to try and add to his 5 Derby points when he also makes his next start in the San Felipe. Ayacara’s record stands at 6: 1-2-0 with earnings of $102,985 and 5 Derby points.
Dark Vader, a son of Tale of Ekati, sold for $150,000 in March and he made his debut on the track in September at Los Alamitos. He broke his maiden in December before picking put his 2 Derby trail points when third in the Lewis. His stats now stand at 5: 1-1-1 with $55,845 earned.
When you buy a 2-year-old at auction, you have the opportunity to get a horse that could turn out to be any kind and you don’t necessarily have to spend a lot of money, especially when you consider joining a partnership like Derby Day Racing. If you have ever dreamed about race horse ownership, please consider the DDR team. For a relatively small investment you can be part of a partnership group that owns three 2-year-olds. Please get in touch with us by e-mail DerbyDayRacing@gmail.com or phone 708-601-4364.
Photo of Lombo winning the Robert B. Lewis courtesy of Benoit Photography