After failing to appear on the buyers' sheet on the first day of the Magic Millions Gold Coast Yearling Sale on Tuesday, James Harron made his presence felt during the second session of the auction when purchasing two colts for an aggregate of $2,125,000 on Wednesday.
The first of the pair was colt by Newgate Farm's first-season sire Capitalist (Written Tycoon), the horse synonymous with Harron, with the bloodstock agent having bought the son of Written Tycoon (Iglesia) for $165,000 at the 2015 edition of the Magic Millions sale.
Harron told Racing & Sports the colt, who was offered by Newgate Farm and catalogued as Lot 349, was the image of his Golden Slipper Stakes (Gr 1, 1200m)-winning father.
"He was very, very similar to his father and probably the closest resemblance I have seen so far," said Harron. "He is medium-sized, very strong and very well-bodied with an alert, sharp type of head. He also had a great attitude just like his Dad had.
"We were very happy to get him and he looks like an early type of horse. He has a good pedigree behind and his brother Marine Moment looks to have some ability which is good."
Harron said the colt would join the Melbourne stable of Anthony and Sam Freedman, who already train a colt by Capitalist for Harron in the shape of Forbes.
"He will be trained in Victoria by Anthony and Sam Freedman, who also train a Capitalist colt for us called Forbes and we have high hopes for him this Autumn," said Harron.
The colt is out of Listed-winning Snitzel (Redoute's Choice) mare Golconda, making him a brother to stakes-placed juvenile Marine One.
Golconda herself is out of Group 2 winner Eureka Jewel (Semipalatinsk), who also produced Listed winner Sermon (Octagonal) and the dam of last season's Dalrello Stakes (Listed, 1200m) winner Smart 'N' Sexy (Smart Missile).
Capitalist has had 14 yearlings sell for an aggregate $4,090,000 at an average of $292,143.
Harron struck again a few lots later, this time for a colt by Shalaa (Invincible Spirit) with the agent paying Arrowfield Stud - where the son of Invincible Spirit (Green Desert) calls home while in the southern hemisphere - $1,150,000 for the yearling.
Shalaa (Invincible Spirit), has made a fantastic start with his first southern hemisphere bred crop, which includes two winners headed by Breeders' Plate (Gr 3, 1000m) winner Shaquero, who will look to enhance his father's credentials even further when he takes his chance in the Magic Millions 2YO Classic (RL, 1200m) at the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Harron was effusive in his praise for the stallion and believes he will continue to make an impact on the stallion ranks in Australia.
"He is a different type of horse compared with the Capitalist," said Harron. "He is probably not a super early two-year-old, but he has a class, quality and a really lovely style about him. Everything he did was very impressive and he has a great presence about him.
"He will be a horse that really develops into a nice mid to backend two-year-old and as a three-year-old I wouldn't be surprised if he is a sprinter / miler type horse.
"Shalaa has had a great start, winning the best early two-year-old race of the year in the Breeders' Plate with Shaquero and he is one of the main chances in the Magic Millions.
"There are a lot of nice horses by the stallion to come through and a lot of trainers are very bullish with the stock they have got. The new sire line here with Invincible Spirit's been the new big sireline and I expect this horse to follow suit."
Catalogued as Lot 382, the colt is out of 2016 Widden Stakes (Gr 3, 1100m) winner Honesty Prevails (Redoute's Choice) and comes from the family of stakes-winning trio Ego's Dare (Hussonet), Midnight Watch (Stormy Atlantic) and Fully Vested (Discreet Cat).
It is the second consecutive good result for Arrowfield when selling the progeny of Honesty Prevails, having topped last year's edition of the Magic Millions sale when her colt by Deep Impact (Sunday Silence) sold to Galletta Construction for $1,900,000 and Arrowfield Stud's John Messara said it was a great result for the farm and the stallion.
"We're delighted to see the Shalaa colt sell so well, he has been extremely popular all week and it's a great result all round, for our team as well as Shalaa, and Honesty Prevails, herself an Arrowfield Magic Millions graduate and now the dam of two million-dollar yearlings at this sale," said Messara.
"James Harron has had amazing success with Arrowfield graduates and will give this colt every opportunity to join the likes of Wandjina, Sweet Idea and Pariah on his honour roll."
Of the sale, Messara said: "It was good to see the sale continue so strongly today, and it reflects the overall strength of the Australian racing industry in a turbulent environment. Plenty of business is being done at every level and buyers are clearly making the most of their chance to buy at a live sale."
Harron said the sale was one of the best he has ever witnessed and expects the strong start to continue through the rest of the sales series.
"I would say it is the best sale I have ever seen," said Harron. "Outside all of the key metrics of prize-money, I think there is a great appetite for people to own horses here and people love their racing. "The government has also done a great job of keeping things afloat through COVID and Australia has fared so well compared to a lot of other countries.
"If you look at all the big asset classes across the board in terms of property, any luxury items it is up, including the stock market which is quite incredible. Horses have clearly followed suit and we are seeing the fruits of that this week and I don't think we will see the end of it for quite a while."