What A Bargain!

by Ed Meyer

posted on November 3, 2008 in News | No Comments >>

IEAH Stables, which campaigned 2008 dual classic winner Big Brown, purchased Bessemer Trust Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) winner Stardom Bound for $5.7-million Sunday night at the Fasig-Tipton Kentucky selected fall mixed sale in Lexington.

The two-year-old Tapit filly will be transferred to trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. and is likely to ship to Florida for the start of her three-year-old campaign, said IEAH co-President Mike Iavarone.

Dutrow said he loved Stardom Bound’s performance in the Breeders’ Cup and loved her physical and mental makeup when he saw her on the sales grounds.

“When we were at the Breeders’ Cup, as soon as she won, I said, ‘Mike, we gotta get this one. We gotta have her.’ ” Dutrow said. “When I met her, she seemed so sweet and laid back. She’s our kind of horse. I can’t wait to train her. From what we’ve seen on the track, what’s gonna stop her?”

Owner Charles Cono sold Stardom Bound because he has had some health problems and does not maintain a breeding operation. John G. Sikura’s Hill ‘n’ Dale Sales Agency agent consigned Stardom Bound.

Sikura was involved in the early bidding but he quickly backed off as Frank Stronach, bidding from the back ring, dueled with the IEAH entourage, who were sitting in the pavilion.

“We wanted her. She came in at a little more than we thought, but I guess if you’re gonna spend $5-million, you can spend $5.7-million,” Iavarone said. “We were getting pretty close to the end. One more bid might have been the end of it. I didn’t know who we were bidding against, but I don’t think we would have gone more than one more.”

Out of the Tarr Road mare My White Corvette, Stardom Bound has three wins and two seconds in five starts and earnings of $1,420,600. She broke her maiden in the $150,000 Del Mar Debutante Stakes (G1), the first of three consecutive Grade 1 wins.

Trainer Chris Paasch, who purchased Stardom Bound on behalf of Cono for $375,000 at the 2008 Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co. March sale of selected two-year-olds in training, said he was just glad to be part of her life, calling her a blessing for him and Cono.

“She’s the best horse I’ve ever owned, the best horse I’ve ever seen, to be honest with you,” Cono said Sunday night at the sale.

Iavarone said Stardom Bound will be owned in a partnership that includes several celebrities, whose names he was not ready to disclose. He said he hopes Stardom Bound will play a major role in IEAH’s future breeding operation.

“Anytime you get a horse like Big Brown, you want to parlay that and try to get some good mares,” Iavarone said.