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Pure theatre as Lloyd Webber's colt sells at Newmarket for 3.5 million guineas

Tattersalls sale topper (4766512)
Tattersalls sale topper (4766512)

Highlight of Tattersalls Book 1 October Yearling Sale was the brother to Too Darn Hot who became the most expensive yearling sold anywhere in the world this year.

David Redvers, acting of behalf of Qatar Racing had to go to 3.5 million guineas to secure the Watership Down Stud colt, bred by Lord and Lady Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Lord Webber is used to his shows playing to packed houses and would not have disappointed at the crowd which turned up to Park Paddocks to see the much anticipated sale of Lot 325.

Tattersalls chairman Edmond Mahony was at the auctioneers' rostrum to conduction proceedings and took an opening bid of 500,000 guineas.

Standing high on the stairs, almost hidden from the auctioneer Redvers fought off a challenge from Shadwell Stud's Angus Gold to land the colt.

"He's the one we all wanted," said Redvers. "The mare is quite exceptional, as is the stallion. Sheikh Fahad and his brothers want the very best and to compete with the very best." And there is every possibility the colt will join his brother under the care of Newmarket trainer John Gosden, who has achieved great success withRoaring Lion for the same Qatari owners this season.

The same came to a close yesterday with a record turnover of 106 million guineas, and a decade-best clearance rate of 86 per cent. Fourteen lots topped the million guinea mark whilst 59 lots sold for 500,000 guineas or more.