Each year in Scottsdale many horses change owners. This time a record purchase price was achieved by the bay stallion Baske Afire 1999 (Afire Bey V – Mac Baske/Baskevich), bred by Double Diamond Ranch, at 2,800,000 USD! The stallion, headliner of the Cedar Ridge Select Sale III held on Tuesday, February 19th at 7:00 p.m., brought the highest price ever paid for an Arabian stallion at public auction.
The stallion was bought by Barbara Chur, owner of Strawberry Banks Farm, East Aurora, NY. Mrs Chur has been breeding Arabian horses for over 30 years. Her farm has bred, owned, and shown many National Champions and is considered one of the leading Arabian horse farms in the country.
Baske Afire is of partially Polish origin, as he is the great-grandson of Bask, which appears on both sides of his pedigree. His grandsire Baskevich is not only a son of Bask, but also of the Janów-bred Panama (Mir Said – Pandora/Wielki Szlem). Baske Afire progeny in the United States includes those out of Polish mares: Janów’s Eula (Arbil – Euterpe/Probat) – leased for a couple of seasons by Nichols Arabians – was bred to him thrice, while Kwestura (Monogramm – Kwesta/Pesennik), also in lease to Mike Nichols, was bred to him once.
Another record may be how quickly this historic sale happened. It took approximately 15 minutes from the first bid of $1 million to reach the final price of $2.8 million. Auctioneer Curt Rogers took the ever increasing bids as Baske Afire was ridden across the stage of the auction by his life long trainer, handler, and manager, Jim Stachowski of Stachowski Farm in Mantua, OH. Stachowski has managed the breeding and promotion for Baske Afire from day one, and worked with Cedar Ridge Arabians to put this deal together for Baske Afire’s owner, Joe Betten of Grand Haven, MI.
Why would Barbara Chur, or any other horse breeder, pay $2.8 million for a stallion? It could be Baske Afire’s “rock star” status which he has achieved as a leading sire of the breed. It’s all in the numbers. At just nine years of age, Baske Afire has out-produced stallions twice his age. He has sired six foal crops with a total of 554 registered foals. In 2007 alone, 14 of Baske Afire’s offspring became national winners in both halter conformation classes and performance competition. Two of his sons were named champion and reserve champion in the Scottsdale $100,000 Arabian English Pleasure Futurity. One of his daughters earned 4 national championships in just one year! Baske Afire is a major money maker, earning $2, 241,124 in collected stud fees to date. He is a totally unique and very valuable Arabian stallion.
Cedar Ridge Arabians it is currently the only farm in America that holds a public auction and it has been called the “Tiffany” of the Arabian horse auction business. It has been a leader in the Arabian horse industry for over 30 years. This year high prices were also achieved by: the bay mare Casting Crowns DFA 2004 (Apollopalooza – Hot Flashez TSA), bearing partially Polish origins – 175,000 USD, HA Sahara Afire, a yearling daughter of Baske Afire out of Oct Tassahara (120,000 USD) and the chestnut mare Ames Deja Vu 1998 (Brass – Afire Inmy Eses) – 75,000 USD. The sale total was 4,065,000.00 USD for 30 horses, limited breeding services to three stallions and one ovum from a highly acclaimed broodmare.
Lara Ames, manager of Cedar Ridge Arabians adds, “It was a great evening. We are extremely happy for Barbara Chur. She is a very well respected breeder. Baske Afire is one of the most important Arabian stallions in the world, and we were very proud and honored to offer the opportunity to own this premier sire. We are certain that Barbara Chur will do all she can to give this great horse every opportunity to fulfill his potential. We would like to thank everyone who participated and supported this auction.”