Report and photos (unless noted) by Rick Carey, Auction Editor
Gooding & Company staged its Amelia Island Auction event on Friday, March 12, 2011. Last year Gooding debuted on Amelia Island at the Amelia Island Plantation, a site which Bonhams (then known as Brooks Auctioneers) tried in 2000 with little success.
RM Auctions, which had set up shop at the Ritz Carlton site of the Amelia Island Concours d’Elegance thirteen years ago in 1999, repulsed Bonhams’ assault. RM enjoyed unchallenged sway over the North Florida market since.
Gooding’s appearance changed the Amelia Island dynamic, selling 58 of 71 lots offered (81.7%) with a total sale of $16,144,500 in 2010. Three lots, led by the wonderfully idiosyncratic Voisin C20 V-12 Mylord Demi Berline at $2,750,000, brought hammer bids of $1 million or more including the Porsche RS61 (s/n 718070) sold to Sir Stirling Moss for $1,550,000 hammer, $1,705,000 with commission.
The challenge escalated this year with Gooding bringing 85 lots (I’d say “cars” but there was a motorcycle in there) and selling 70 of them for a sell-through of 82.4% and a total of $17,879,550, up 0.7 points in sale rate and $1,735,050, 10.7%, from last year’s total. Four cars sold on hammer bids of $1 million or more, topped by the gorgeous Ferrari 212 Export Vignale Cabriolet (s/n 0106E) at $1,700,000 hammer, $1,870,000 with commission. It was closely followed by the fastidiously restored Lamborghini Miura SV prototype (s/n 4758) at an astounding price of $1,550,000, $1,705,000 with commission. The Miura had sold at Quail Lodge in 2000 in good but only cosmetically redone driver condition for $96,000!
As successful as it was, however, the process was labored, with the bidding dragging on through the afternoon and well into the evening. The sale rate through the first two hours was barely 15 cars an hour. Charlie Ross employed all his considerable skills on the block to chide, encourage and cajole the bidders, frequently achieving success at the cost of a protracted process. Distracted conversations spread through the marquee to fill the vacuum of progress on the block.
In the end Gooding achieved a sound success with successful bids exceeding low estimates on the sold lots by 3.4% (in Gooding’s Scottsdale sale the total successful bids were 1.2% below the low estimates; at Pebble Beach they were 0.3% below the low estimates.) Five transactions (7.25%) were concluded above the high estimate, also better than Arizona (6.6%) but not as good as Pebble Beach (8.9%).
Jonathan Sierakowski contributed many of the observations in this auction report, and even more of the photos.
Gooding and Company Amelia Island Auction 2011 – Report