The Australasian yearling sale focus switches to Melbourne for the four-day Premier Yearling Sale, beginning on Sunday.

A total of 771 horses have been catalogued for Premier, among them 103 relations to Stakes winners and 104 progeny of Stakes-winning mares. More than 500 of the lots are Super VOBIS nominated.

Sunday’s opening day will again feature the popular Blue Riband session, where yearlings considered to have the pedigree and conformation to excel in their Classic Year and beyond have been specifically selected.

Last year the Session 1 average was up 14% to $111,000 while Session 2 shot up by a whopping 43% to almost $46,000. Just seven years ago, the Session 1 average was only $55,000.

58 Victorian vendors have 602 catalogued lots representing the biggest number ever except for 2008 which was unique due to the travel restrictions associated with the Equine Influenza outbreak.

Victorian sired lots make up a significant part of the catalogue. Australia’s Champion 2yo sire and Victorian overall Champion Sire Written Tycoon has the largest number of lots (30).

Sun Stud’s two highly promising first crop sires, Fiorente and Fighting Sun, have a great opportunity to make their mark at the sale with 29 lots and 19 lots respectively.

Three Bridges’ Unencumbered (13 lots) and Godolphin Northwood’s Kuroshio (7 lots) will also make their Melbourne Premier debuts as sires.

Supreme Thoroughbreds has the largest draft this year with 40 lots in its Oaklands Junction consignment.

“This is easily our biggest and best ever (for Premier Sale),” says Supreme’s Sue Shaw.

“With 16 fillies and 24 colts, we are presenting a diverse group of yearlings by most of the leading stallions out of first-rate mares that are all well-bred with strong pedigrees,’’ Shaw said.

“We are pumped and ready to parade out at Oaklands and hope that the quality on offer is well received by the local and international buying bench.’’

Inglis’ Victorian bloodstock team has for almost a fortnight been doing on-farm inspections around Victoria of the yearlings entered for the sale. Last week, they finalised their on-farm inspections accompanied by dozens of potential buyers.

Inglis’ Victorian Bloodstock Manager Simon Vivian believes the success of the Classic Sale in Sydney earlier this month bodes well for a big Premier Sale.

“The strength of the yearling market allows us to go into Premier with plenty of confidence,’’ Vivian said.

“The broad appeal for Premier is attributable to well-conformed yearlings by a great variety of stallions, which has been proven year after year.

“Graduates of the Melbourne Premier Sale continue to perform well on national and international racetracks and this provides buyers with great confidence in the product on offer.

“Our vendors can be complimented on their drafts and I’m sure they will be justifiably rewarded.’’

View the full catalogue.

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