American steeplechasing wants you. And your horses. In an effort aimed squarely at growing horse and human participants in jump racing, the National Steeplechase Association will hold its second annual symposium/sale April 10 at Great Meadow Racecourse in The Plains, Va.
Gates open at 8:30 a.m. with sales horses set to school and gallop – and be available for inspection by potential buyers – starting at 9. The symposium, a panel discussion geared toward newcomers, begins at noon with the sale starting at 2 p.m. Admission is free with food and refreshments available for purchase.
The day is a product of the NSA’s Promotion and Growth Committee, chaired by owner and race-meet chairman Al Griffin, and follows the inaugural event last year at Shawan Downs in Maryland.
“We have a great product, full of beautiful horses and just-as-beautiful venues and race courses, but marketing matters,” said Griffin. “This is a way to welcome some new people, help them learn about the sport and put some new horses into the game.”
The sale will include 10-15 steeplechase prospects for sale outright in a live-auction format. The early list includes sons of Smart Strike, Awesome Again and Malibu Moon from high-profile flat stables including Godolphin, Stuart Janney and Shug McGaughey. In addition to these prospects, a novice stakes winner over jumps and a Grade 3 stakes winner from the flat have been recruited.
In addition to the live auction of prospects, a selection of horses with conditions/restrictions (to stay with trainer or shares in a present partnership) will be on offer. They will parade in the sales ring, but will not be auctioned live. Horses will be sold in a silent-auction format, with consignors available to discuss conditions (day rate, silks, plans, etc.) prior to sale. Consignors will be introduced and made available to potential buyers.
The National Steeplechase Foundation will receive 5 percent of the gross sales of all horses. In addition, some horses have been donated fully to the NSF – meaning all proceeds on those horses go to the charity to further expand American steeplechasing.
Entries close April 4 with entry fees of $300 (on or before March 21), $500 (on or before April 4) or $1,000 (up to day of sale). Further details for consignors will be available at the website gojumpracing.org, which will also post sales listings. Potential bidders are encouraged to pre-register online as well. Consignors and registered bidders will receive complimentary lunch and drink tickets.
“We’re excited about the sale and its direction,” said Sean Clancy, a bloodstock agent and owner who is assisting in the recruitment of prospects. “I know there will be some worthy horses in the catalogue and I know several trainers who said they will participate. It’s a great chance to get involved, and help the sport grow at the same time.”
The symposium will include a panel discussion moderated by journalist Joe Clancy of thisishorseracing.com. Guests will discuss their roles in racing (flat and jump) and what it means to be involved in jump racing.
Things to Know
What: National Steeplechase Association prospect sale and owner symposium.
When: Sunday, April 10.
Where: Great Meadow Racecourse, home of the Virginia Gold Cup. 5089 Old Tavern Rd, The Plains, VA 20198.
Why: To benefit the National Steeplechase Foundation.
Al Griffin: firstname.lastname@example.org or (540) 219-1400.
Sean Clancy: email@example.com or (302) 545-7713
Joe Clancy: firstname.lastname@example.org or (302) 545-4424