The Viva Pataca connection of trainer John Moore and owner Stanley Ho Hung-sun achieved a record on Monday when they splashed out A$2 million (HK$14.68 million) for a colt at the second day of the William Inglis Australian Easter Yearling Sale. It's the highest price ever given at auction by a Hong Kong owner and, for readers unfamiliar with yearling sales, these are horses about 18 months old, have never had a saddle on them, and may not be able to run out of sight on a dark night. Not that Moore is ever likely to get that sort of result from his yearling selections, the champion trainer having an excellent record with the horses he acquires this way. But it's an inherently higher risk than buying proven horses. The yearling colt in question is by champion Australian sire Redoute's Choice, the son of great stallion Danehill, from a Group-placed daughter of Japan's super sire, Sunday Silence. Moore's bloodstock adviser John Hutchison described the colt as 'the image of Stratum', the 2005 Golden Slipper Stakes winner and one of the high-profile sons of Redoute's Choice. But the A$2 million sale was cancelled within hours after the Redoute's Choice colt failed the scope, meaning there is some doubt about his ability to breathe soundly. So ultimately, Moore and the Macau tycoon had the thrill of the chase and the high of beating some of the world's biggest players at auction, but went home with their powder still dry.