Big Brown will stand for Three Chimneys in $50M deal

Breeding rights

May 18, 2008|By Childs Walker | Childs Walker,SUN REPORTER

The owners of Preakness and Kentucky Derby winner Big Brown have agreed to a $50 million deal to syndicate the horse's breeding rights to Kentucky's Three Chimneys Farm, NBC Sports reported.

Michael Iavarone, co-president of IEAH Stables, said he could not confirm the $50 million figure but said he was proud to do business with Three Chimneys.

"We're so excited to ensure his future," he said in the winner's circle after the Preakness. "He deserves a good life after racing."

The interest in the colt was hardly surprising given his dominance in five career starts, including the first two legs of this year's Triple Crown. His owners made it clear all along that he would not have a long racing career and would instead be put out to stud.

He will next try to win the Triple Crown on June 7 in the Belmont Stakes. Only 11 horses in history have achieved the feat. Affirmed was the last in 1978.

"Three Chimneys is thrilled to have the privilege to stand a horse of Big Brown's caliber," farm owner Robert Clay said. "Having won every race he's run with such ease, I don't think we've actually seen what he's truly capable of."

Last week, Iavarone said a multimillion-dollar deal for the breeding rights had fallen through. But breeding experts had predicted the deal would be in the tens of millions. Big Brown was insured for $50 million.

"We tried hard to get the deal done before the race. There were a lot of legal issues," Iavarone said. "You might not believe it, but we actually got it signed on the way to the race track."

Iavarone announced last week that the colt would not race as a 4-year-old. Trainer Rick Dutrow said he would like to race Big Brown in the Breeder's Cup Classic later this year.

Though IEAH was particularly aggressive in negotiating a deal for Big Brown, it has become common for ownership groups to strike such pacts for top 3-year-olds.

childs.walker@baltsun.com

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

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