THE culmination of a relatively brief but incredible journey for Martin Cooney and his partner Elaine Shaw reached its zenith in spectacular fashion at Goffs yesterday evening with the €825,000 sale of their 11-year-old mare Plying.

At this sale in 2018 the Jossestown Stud pair paid €21,000 for Plying whose No Nay Never filly sold for €40,000 earlier in the week. That filly turned out to be the brilliant Alcohol Free whose exploits over the course of the last two seasons resulted in Plying’s value going through the roof yesterday.

Ultimately it was BBA Ireland’s Michael Donohoe who saw off Simon Marsh for the daughter of Hard Spun who lived up to her billing as the jewel in the crown of this year’s Breeding Stock Sale.

For her part Alcohol Free had already put her dam’s value on an entirely different footing when winning last season’s Cheveley Park Stakes but ever better was to come this year as Andrew Balding’s charge notched up further top level victories in the Coronation and Sussex Stakes.

This mean that Plying returned to the ring as the dam of three winners from five runners with her other progeny featuring the French stakes scorer Alexander James and Johan Zoffani, who showed a useful level of form for Michael O’Callaghan before going on to win twice in America.

“She’s been bought for Yulong Investments and we felt it was a fantastic opportunity to acquire the dam of what we feel is a champion filly and I believe Alcohol Free stays in training next year, so there could easily be more to come from her,” said Donohoe.

“Plying is in foal to Lope De Vega which is a covering which would be close to Mr Zhang’s heart and we felt that at the price she made and, given what she has already produced, that she represented value. In terms of who she will visit next year plans are undecided but it’s possible that she could go to Lucky Vega,” added the agent.

Stallion support

As well as buying the top lot Michael Donohoe and Yulong Investments were busy finding mares to send to Lucky Vega next year and they picked up a couple of choice lots headed by the Aga Khan’s Eytarna who cost €330,000.

Already the dam of the high class Eziyra and the stakes-winning Eshera, the daughter of Dubai Destination was sold in foal to Teofilo. Earlier the sam combination forked out €265,000 for the Group 3-placed So Unique who was sold by Ballylinch Stud carrying to Waldgeist.

Afterwards Donohoe remarked: “They’ve been bought for Yulong Investments and will be going to visit Lucky Vega next year.

“Mr Zhang plans to really support Lucky Vega at the yearling and foal sales but he also wanted to come here and pick up a couple of nice mares for him too.

“Eytarna is a proven producer and you can see that Lope De Vega has already worked with the family with Erzindjan and it’s just a great Aga Khan family to be getting into. We’re very pleased to have gotten both mares”.

Star appeal

Owner David Ward will be supporting his top drawer sprinter Starman with several of yesterday’s top lots destined to visit to the Tally-Ho Stud resident.

Ward spent €300,000 on the Aga Khan’s winning Kingman mare Ediyva who is in foal to Siyouni and he went to €160,000 for Derrinstown Group 3 winner Muraaqaba who is carrying to Dark Angel.

Muraaqaba is a half-sister to the Middle Park Stakes winner Awzaan. The next lot into the ring was Muraaqaba’s Sandringham Handicap winning half-sister Muteela. The dual listed winner was sold in foal to Night Of Thunder and cost Noel O’Callaghan’s Mountarmstrong Stud €350,000.