S T Wootton Dispersal Sale 1987
‘End of an era’ is probably an overworked cliché. However I think it’s more like an understatement in the case of the final dispersal of Stanley Wootton’s bloodstock on 26th April 26th 1987. It could be appropriate that it was the day after ANZAC day? Coincidentally it’s also my wedding anniversary!
The sale was ‘embedded’ in the Easter Broodmare Sale beginning after Lot 70 in the general catalogue. Twelve mares, three weanlings, seven racehorse fillies and five racehorse colts made up the offering. Six year old mare ‘Tobina’ in foal to three times champion sire ‘Bletchingly, also bred by Mr Wootton, topped the sale at $200,000:00. Lot 80 ‘Risca’ (Vibrant/Magic Symbol, dam of Biscay) made $85,000:00 in foal to a very late service to Vain.
‘Risca’ was the biggest foal I ever saw in my whole professional career. She actually caused a condition known as ‘obturator paralysis’ in her dam Magic Symbol who was a very big mare indeed and had delivered many foals. ‘Risca’ had to have a veterinary assisted birth (me) due to ‘hiplock’. Both of these clinical conditions are rare in thoroughbreds (and horses in general) although quite commonplace in some breeds of cattle. Magic Symbol finally regained her feet after about 48 hours’ recumbency. It was a great relief to all concerned at Bhima Stud where special care had enabled her recovery. It heralded the end of Magic Symbol’s breeding life.
In all the twelve mares grossed $684,000:00 at an average of $57,000:00. The ‘crazy eighties’ were inflationary times in a very heated market in the thoroughbred world.
The list of covering stallions was also a firm indicator: Biscay, Bletchingly, Dalmacia, Keen, Lunchtime, Red Anchor, Rutland, Salieri, Tolomeo, Vain and What A Guest.