Windsor Park Stud’s one-of-a-kind white filly was a massive draw-card leading into this year’s National Yearling Sale, and one buyer came to Karaka from across the world and refused to go home without her.
After a desperate bidding duel with powerhouse buyer David Ellis, China Horse Club's Michael Wallace the filly by High Chaparral out of The Opera House was sold to Japanese buyer Hideo Takadaru for $450,000.
“I really wanted her,” he said. “She was horse I came here to buy and she is the only one I wanted. I saw video of her on the internet and she looked like the sort of horse I wanted to buy. I was interested in both her physique and her pedigree. The price was very high, but I am very happy!”
The filly, who went through the ring today as Lot 113, was bred and sold by Windsor Park Stud and comes from one of the Cambridge farm’s finest families. The Zabeel mare The Opera House, also pure white, is a winning three-quarter sister to the champion galloper Might and Power. The Opera House herself cost A$270,000 when she was sold at the Gold Coast as a yearling.
The High Chaparral filly’s long-term future lies in Japan, but her proud new owner has not yet made a decision on what to do with her in the interim. “I want her to be a broodmare in Japan and to breed her to Deep Impact,” he said. “I have not decided yet whether she will race here or in Japan.”
The bidding on the white filly started at $200,000 and shot up in $20,000 increments from there in front of a packed auditorium. Ellis matched every bid up to and including $430,000, but he reluctantly withdrew from the war when Michael Wallace of China Horse Club came in at $440,000 before the bidding finally stopped at $450,000.