Navigating the purchasing process of a thoroughbred yearling can be complex, especially when aiming to identify a potential future champion. Decoding the process and sourcing winners and where they come from is key in maximising the chances of securing a promising investment.

The beginning- Thoroughbred sales.

Where to start when it comes to purchasing a thoroughbred yearling? For most of us, knowing where and when to buy a yearling, let alone one that ends up winning can be daunting.

The main thoroughbred sale houses that we have available in Australia are Inglis and Magic Millions, they offer a variety of sales throughout the year catering to buyers’ every need. Whether you’re after a weanling, yearling, ready-to-race racehorse or broodmare; they are the main port of call.

There is also the Karaka sales in New Zealand, where you can find a plethora of quality horses.

Photo: Georgia Young


Costly exercise.

For some, when we think of buying a thoroughbred we immediately believe it’s going to be an expensive venture. If you pay more, then you’ll get a better quality animal right? This isn’t always the case as shown in previous years, cheaper buys have gone on to be successful. Sourcing winners doesn’t have to break the bank!

Key Stats for the 2022/2023 season

In the 2022/2023 season, there were 75 Group 1 races won. 60 individual horses won those Group 1’s. Anamoe won six of those Group 1’s. Trainer Chris Waller trained twelve of those Group 1 winners. 30 individual sellers sold those Group 1 winners with Sledmere producing four of them. Magic Millions sold twenty three of those winners.  Karaka sold fifteen of them.

Cost of Group 1 winners

The highest-priced Group 1 winner for the 2022/2023 season was In Secret which was purchased for $900,000.  The lowest price was Callsign Mav which was purchased for $3,000. Surprisingly sixteen individual Group 1 winners were bought for under $100,000. Whereas eleven individuals were bought for over $250,000.

Other Notable purchases

Mr Brightside for example, whose recent wins in the  Group 1 C.F.Orr Stakes and Group 1 Futurity Stakes at Caulfield, was a 2019 Karaka graduate costing $22,000. He has won $12,377,752 in prize money and has most definitely paid for his training fees!

Another notable example includes Hayasugi, the 2024 Blue Diamond winner, acquired at the 2022 Inglis Weanling Sales for $47,500. She is also by Royal Meeting, who again is an example that you don’t always need to have the most expensive features to have a quality product. His service fee is currently $11,000 and stands at Leneva Park in Victoria.

Expensive horses, nonetheless, have the potential for success. Espionage, trained by Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott, cost $1,000,000 sourced from the 2023 Magic Millions January Yearling Sale. Espionage won the Group 3 Breeder’s Plate and most recently ran second in the Group 2 Silver Slipper. He is currently $8 and second favourite for the 2024 Golden Slipper.

Let’s not forget Stormboy who was purchased as a yearling for $460,000 and was recently sold for more than $50 million.

What’s available for me?

Espionage is by Zoustar, the same stallion that sired Zousain. Currently on our Ownership Marketplace, we have a filly  by Zousain x Stable Island, offering an exciting opportunity for those interested in purchasing a thoroughbred yearling.

Castanya is a filly trained by Annabel Neasham, purchased from the 2023 Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling sale for $300,000. Castanya won her last start (Listed Lonhro Plate) and is racing in the Group 2 Reisling Stakes- a lead up to the Golden Slipper.

On our Ownership Marketplace, we have a half-brother currently available, to be trained by Annabel Neasham. Russian Revolution x Ganda. 

Russian Revolution x Ganda