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About Us

The Society of International Thoroughbred Auctioneers (SITA), is an association of the world’s leading Bloodstock Auction houses.

It was founded in 1983 to create a forum for the discussion of subjects of mutual interest to International Thoroughbred Auctioneers.


SITA members are experienced Bloodstock Auctioneers providing the highest standard of auctioning to both buyers and sellers. Each member’s Conditions of Sale are designed to protect both parties and have evolved over many years of trading. They reflect the law of the country of residence of each member, whilst reacting to changes in the marketplace.

SITA ratifies any decisions made by IRPAC who compile the Cataloguing Standards Booklet (the “Blue Book”).


A primary role of SITA is to ensure consistent presentation of Black-Type and adherence to catalogue standards as defined in the “Blue Book,” for catalogues published by SITA members. Other subjects for discussion by SITA may include changes in the law affecting Public Auction, advances in veterinary science, internet sales, import and export rules/laws across jurisdictions.


While each SITA member runs its business independently and competitively, members maintain similar standards and procedures in their auctions. In a time of increasing globalisation of Thoroughbred breeding, racing and marketing; Thoroughbreds are an international commodity and clients find comfort and security in buying and selling when standards are in general conformity.

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International Cataloguing Standards Committee


The International Cataloguing Standards Committee was formed in 1981 to achieve uniformity of cataloguing standards throughout the world in a time of increasing internationalization of Thoroughbred breeding, racing and marketing. The committee was made up of representatives of the racing authorities, breeders’ organizations, and international auction houses of four major breeding and racing countries (England, France, Ireland, and North America). One representative was added for The Organizacion Sudamericana de Fomento del Pura Sangre de Carrera (OSAF) in 1995 and one was added for the Asian Racing Federation in 1996. The committee made recommendations to the Society of International Thoroughbred Auctioneers (SITA).


The committee sought to achieve uniformity by making International Cataloguing Standards the single most authoritative, comprehensive, practical and accepted publication dealing with “black type” throughout the Thoroughbred world. In 1985 the committee set forth conditions under which a country could make the transition from Part II to Part I, and invited applications from those countries seeking to make this transition.


In October of 1985, after careful evaluation of the various applications, the committee welcomed Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, New Zealand, Peru, South Africa and Uruguay into Part I. The committee found: 1) that racing in these countries was of sufficient stature in terms of number of horses competing, number of races contested, and purse monies distributed to justify their classification as being among the world’s major racing countries; 2) that the number and percentage of races given group, graded or “black type” status in these countries was consistent with the pattern of racing in them without being disproportionate to the ratio of such races in the countries already in Part I; and 3) that the group or graded and listed races in these countries were, in fact, the highest class races contested within them.


Following a complete review of all countries in Part I for the 1992 publication, the number of graded and listed races was reduced for several countries and Uruguay was demoted to Part II.


In June of 2007 ICSC decided to transfer the responsibilities of making recommendations for the Group or Graded status of races to the International Grading and Race Planning Advisory Committee (IRPAC). The IRPAC recommendations are ratified by SITA. Responsibilities for making recommendations regarding catalogue page format issues are coordinated by regional ICSC sub-committees.

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Current News

  • SITA recently supported the application from the Asian Pattern Committee to upgrade the Bahrain International Trophy from Group 3 to Group 2 Status

  • SITA recently supported the application of the European Pattern Committee to award Listed Status to the Wielka Warszawska in Poland

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