LAUREL -- Nationally prominent stables have purchased two budding Maryland stars in unrelated deals.
A 51 percent interest in Worldly Possession was sold for an undisclosed amount to Clover Racing Stable, the California-based syndicate that has raced a number of top horses. And John Franks, the Louisiana oilman with a long history in racing, has paid $150,000 for Resurgent Kris.
Both horses are 3-year-old fillies that have performed brilliantly in recent starts on the Laurel Race Course turf course. Worldly Possession set a Laurel record for six furlongs when winning in 1 minute, 8 1/5 seconds on turf Aug. 1. Three days before, Resurgent Kris won a turf race by nine lengths, making her 3-for-4 on turf.
James P. Kintz owned Worldly Possession before selling controlling interest to Clover; Kintz retains the remaining 49 percent. When asked if $100,00 to $150,000 for their share was correct, Clover president Barry Irwin said, "I would say it's in there."
Worldly Possession, by Valid Appeal, will run once more for Maryland trainer Jim McGreevy, then be shipped to Neil Drysdale's stable in California, said Irwin.
"There's a race for her out here [at Santa Anita Park] on Oct. 4 at a mile on the grass," Irwin said yesterday from Del Mar, Calif. "We're going to get her out here a few weeks before that, and then we'll stretch her out and see what happens."
Clover has agents throughout the country, including Maryland. When an agent believes a horse is worth making an offer on, they will advise Clover officials about it. In this case, Irwin said, Worldly Possession's dirt form "was just OK, but after the way she won on turf, it obviously got us interested. Whenever a horse runs away from a field the way she did in a short span [she surged away late to win by 6 1/2 lengths], especially on turf . . . that's impressive."
Clover and Dogwood Stable are often recognized as the two largest and most successful ownership syndicates in the nation.
But they operate much differently: While Dogwood buys young, unraced horses at auction, Clover waits for them to show glimpses of promise -- then buys them before they become too proven and too expensive. The strategy has paid off with horses such as Prized, winner of a Breeders' Cup race, and Martial Law, winner of the Santa Anita Handicap.
Clover's only significant foray into Maryland came in early 1990, when the syndicate bought Citidancer from Robert Quinichett after the colt had made just one start; the reported sum was about $550,000. Citidancer won two subsequent starts before breaking down and being retired to stud.
Resurgent Kris, a daughter of Kris S., was sold by Carl F. Schwietert, whose trainer is John Salzman. The filly will stay in Maryland to be trained by Carlos Garcia, Franks' Maryland trainer.
In the 1980s, Franks' far-flung stable consisted of several hundred horses and was believed to be larger than any in the country. Because the lagging economy adversely affected his oil interests, he has reduced his stable through a dispersal and other means, although he is still active in racing.
NOTES: Eight horses are entered in tomorrow's $1 million Pacific Classic at Del Mar Race Course. In post position order, they are Itsallgreektome, Anshan, Farma Way, Stalwart Charger, Twilight Agenda, Best Pal, Festin and Unbridled. In a surprise, trainer D. Wayne Lukas has named Kent Desormeaux to ride late-blooming Twilight Agenda, listed at 5-1 by the Del Mar odds-maker. The inaugural Pacific Classic will be simulcast to Laurel/Pimlico. . . . Mario Pino lengthened his lead atop the riders' standings with 3 winners Tuesday. Pino (26 winners) leads Mike Luzzi and Jo Jo Ladner (23 each).