Caldwell Potter sets National Hunt sales record and goes to Paul Nicholls yard
Caldwell Potter became the most expensive National Hunt horse ever sold at public auction after fetching 740,000 euros (£632,910).
Owners Andy and Gemma Brown announced last month that they were to sell their entire chain.
Their star stalwart was bought by a syndicate including former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
Having previously been trained by Gordon Elliott, he will now join Paul Nicholls’ yard.
The six-year-old has already shown good form this season, winning a Grade One race over hurdles at Leopardstown in December.
Elliott bid 720,000 euros (£615,850) for the horse at the Tattersalls Ireland sale but was beaten by the higher bid submitted by Highflyer Bloodstock’s Anthony Bromley.
“I don’t feel good about taking the horse out of Gordon Elliott’s yard, he’s done so well with the horse, but this is a business and you have to do your best for your clients,” said Bromley.
“When I saw that this horse was coming forward for sale, I only made one call and it was to John Hales. He has been my client for many years, since back in the Azertyuiop era, and we have had Neptune Collonges. and Politologue between them.
“I bought it for a small partnership they have together, four guys – John Hales, Ged Mason, Sir Alex Ferguson and Peter Done.
“I’m very happy to get the horse, but it’s a little sweet because I could see how much Gordon was trying to get the horse back when he was bidding.”
The horse has entries in the Supreme Novices’ Hurdle and the Baring Bingham Novices’ Hurdle at the Cheltenham Festival next month, but Bromley warned he is not guaranteed to line up at the meeting.
Caldwell Potter’s fee surpasses the previous record for a jumping horse sold at auction, surpassing Interconnected bought by Darren Yates at Doncaster in 2019 for £620,000.
In total, the 29 lots were sold for a total of €5.29m (£4.45m) with Elliott managing to hold the second, third and fourth highest lots.
“I was disappointed to lose the great horse, but that’s what it is – hopefully the new owners will be lucky,” Elliott said. “Pied Piper is coming back and everything that was We only want Caldwell Potter.
“Staffordshire Knot is an exciting six-year-old and we are delighted to have him back. The horses looked good – we only had a week’s notice for this sale and he a credit to the workers.
“We can get back to focusing on the day job now.”