The final three days of Goresbridge’s September sales produced some lively trade, with Co Waterford breeder Bill Toomey taking the three-year-old honours with his home-bred gelding by Conthargos.

The chesnut headed the figures at €25,000 and was one of 13 lots to break the €10,000 mark. The resulting figures illustrated yet another hike in the returns, and while they did not live up to the heady heights of Friday’s four-year-olds, there was a solid clearance of 65% (62% in 2020) together with an average of €5,265 (€4,770).

Once again, online bidding was highly influential, and confidence in the medium was boosted by the ever-improving quality of the videos.

Buyers overall were choosy however, and there were few real bargains to be found. At the lower end of the spectrum, the prices largely reflected the quality on offer, and indications for the forthcoming foal sales would have to be uncertain.

Taking centre stage on the final day, the Bill Toomey consigned son of Conthargos is a well related individual. The third foal out of Faded Grandeur by Golden Master, he is out of a full sister to the US-based jumper Cillbhrid Rose, and from the family of Punjab (1.60m), Solon (1.60m) and several other notable performers. He impressed when jumping prior to the sale, and as a result was the subject of a competitive battle.

This eventually developed into a two-way duel, with dealer Jim Derwin making the final bid. Although the Athlone man admitted he didn’t get to see him jump, he was well advised, and plans to retain the gelding himself.

“I will keep him for the boys [son James and nephew Francis Jr] to jump – these horses are hard found,” Derwin said.