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Is There a Correlation Between Yearling Size and Sale Price?By Kentucky Equine Research Staff · March 13, 2017

Previous research has shown a relationship between yearling size and future racing performance. Yearlings that weighed in the lower 25% of the population had lower earnings and fewer stakes winners than the rest of the population. Yearlings below the 50th weight and height percentiles were more likely to start as two-year-olds and had more career starts than larger horses.

This study examined body size and selling price of yearlings and compared these with results from a study of yearling size and future racing performance.

Body weight and wither height were recorded for 1,040 yearlings sold in 2003-2006. They were divided into groups according to whether they sold above or below the median price for their sales group. Larger and taller yearlings sold better than smaller horses.

Correlations of sale price to race earnings showed that yearlings in the second weight quartile had the most stakes winners and greatest career earnings. Heavier yearlings sold for greater amounts but had fewer stakes wins and overall earnings. The tallest yearlings sold for less but had greater career earnings and number of stakes wins. 

This report of KER's 2007 research was published in Proceedings of the 20th Equine Science Society Symposium.

Read the entire research paper, titled The Relationship Between Size at Yearling Sale, Sale Price and Future Racing Performance in Kentucky Thoroughbreds.