Keeneland’s 2020 September Yearling Sale Opens Sunday, Sept. 13

September 8, 2020

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Keeneland will kick off its 77th annual September Yearling Sale on Sunday, Sept. 13 at noon with the first of 12 sessions of the internationally important sale of Thoroughbred racing prospects, which will be conducted amid COVID-19 protocols that are designed to create the safest environment possible.  

For those unable to attend the sale, Keeneland will offer online bidding and expanded phone bidding capabilities. The digital September Sale catalog also has been enhanced to deliver more information, such as walking videos of yearlings and comments from consignors, directly to customers.

“The September Sale is incredibly vital to our industry as a key annual marketplace for Thoroughbred breeders and sellers, a proven source of top-quality racing prospects for buyers from around the world and an invaluable economic driver for Central Kentucky,” Keeneland President-Elect and Interim Head of Sales Shannon Arvin said.

“Though COVID-19 presents a unique set of operational challenges for everyone, we are confident that the protocols we have put in place will provide a stable marketplace and promote safety across the sales grounds. We thank everyone for their cooperation and their tremendous effort to make this sale happen.”

The September Sale produces horses that win at racing’s highest level around the world. Through Labor Day, September Sale graduates had won 261 stakes, including 36 Grade/Group 1 events across North America as well as in Great Britain, Japan and Australia. Leading the graded stakes winners over the Labor Day weekend were Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) winner Authentic and Kentucky Oaks (G1) winner Shedaresthedevil.     

Other September Sale graduates alumni who won Grade 1 races during the past weekend were Global Campaign (Woodward), Jackie’s Warrior (Runhappy Hopeful), champion Monomoy Girl (La Troienne Presented by Oak Grove Gaming and Racing), Princess Noor (Del Mar Debutante) and Vequist (Spinaway).

Follow the sale on TVG2, 

Coverage of the September Sale begins Saturday, Sept. 12 at 9 a.m. when TVG2 will air “Rising Stock,” an hour long preview show hosted by Christina Blacker, Gabby Gaudet and Scott Hazelton.

TVG2 will have live coverage of the first four days of the auction: noon to 7 p.m. on Sept. 13-14 and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sept. 16-17.

As always, Keeneland will livestream the entire September Sale at

2020 September Sale schedule 

A total of 4,272 yearlings are cataloged in this year’s September Sale, which will cover a total of 12 sessions: 

Book 1 Sunday-Monday, Sept. 13-14. Sessions begin at noon. A total of 448 yearlings are cataloged over the two days.  

Tuesday, Sept. 15 – “Dark day” with no sale. 

Book 2 Wednesday-Thursday, Sept. 16-17. Sessions begin at 10 a.m. with a total of 770 horses in the two-day catalog.  

Books 3-6Friday-Friday, Sept. 18-25. Sessions begin at 10 a.m. A total of 3,054 yearlings are cataloged for these sessions over the final eight days of the sale. 

Yearlings represent such leading sires as American Pharoah, Bernardini, Candy Ride (ARG), Constitution, Curlin, Dark Angel (IRE), Distorted Humor, Empire Maker, Frankel (GB), Frosted, Galileo (IRE), Ghostzapper, Hard Spun, Honor Code, Into Mischief, Kingman (GB), Kitten’s Joy, Malibu Moon, Medaglia d’Oro, More Than Ready, Munnings, No Nay Never, Nyquist, Pioneerof the Nile, Quality Road, Speightstown, Street Sense, Tapit, Uncle Mo, Union Rags, Violence and War Front.

Stallions with their first crop of yearlings in the catalog include Arrogate, Battle of Midway, Caravaggio, Churchill (IRE), Classic Empire, Cupid, Gun Runner, Keen Ice, Mastery and Practical Joke. 

Credentials required at Keeneland during the September Sale 

All September Sale participants who attend the auction must request a credential through Virtual Badge in order to access the sales grounds through Sept. 25. Click here for more information 》

This year’s September Sale is closed to the public. 

Proof of a negative COVID-19 test is required for all Keeneland employees, consignors and their staffs, veterinarians and their staffs, farriers, van representatives and media. Buyers, owners and agents are not required to be tested, but they must submit a health questionnaire prior to the September Sale. Testing will be available if requested. 

Everyone entering the Keeneland grounds will undergo a daily health screening with a temperature check and questions. 

Face coverings must be worn both inside and outdoors, and social distancing of at least six feet is required.

There will be reduced capacity in the Sales Pavilion, including the Sales Arena and Back Holding Ring. Social distancing when inspecting yearlings will be observed, and buyers, owners and agents are not permitted to enter the barns.  

Tools For Buyers 

Keeneland encourages buyers to take advantage of the following information regardless if they will attend the sale in person or participate remotely: 

• The enhanced online September Sale catalog , which includes walking videos of yearlings, comments from consignors about their yearlings and links to each consignor’s website. Click here 》

• An online account on the Keeneland sales portal. Click here 》

• A Directory of Bloodstock Agents who plan to be at Keeneland and can inspect a yearling. Click here 》

• Expanded bidding opportunities include phone bidding and online bidding. 

• An additional location for on-site bidders is at the Back Show Ring. Please contact Director of Sales Accounting Brent Hacker to answer questions about expanded bidding options: 859 288-4231 or

On-Site Experience Guide

While the September Sale provides unprecedented challenges, Keeneland is committed to providing exceptional services and dining to ensure guests are safe and comfortable. Click here for the On-Site Experience Guide to learn more 》

• The Sales Pavilion will operate at reduced capacity to allow for social distancing. 

• Keeneland Hospitality will offer a variety of culinary options throughout the grounds ranging from seated meals to grab-and-go snacks. Venues include First Floor Grandstand lunch service featuring elevated concession menus, Terrace Grill (weather permitting), Phoenix Room and Track Kitchen. The Limestone Café will not offer food for the September Sale due to social distancing limitations.

• Patrons may self-park in any spot not marked as reserved. For the health and safety of our guests and employees, valet parking will not be available. 

• For the convenience of our customers, golf cart shuttles are available throughout the grounds. Drivers will sanitize golf carts after each ride.                                                  

Press Release

@jonathanstettin Thank you. This is a truly beautiful tribute to a racing legend. Good to hear the true story of what happened that day.

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