So You Think’s Breeders Locked In Bitter Ownership Dispute

By: Sarah Fortnum
June 21st, 2011

As So You Think attempts to tackle Europe, back in New Zealand his co-breeders are entangled in a bitter battle over the breeding rights to his dam Triassic.

Breeders Cecile Smith and Mike Moran are currently locked in a court dispute as the sale of So You Think’s full brother in January nears ever closer.

The younger brother of So You Think is set to be one of the most sought-after yearlings in the Asia Pacific region.

Ms Smith is currently in court hoping to gain a declaration that she “holds the sole property and breeding rights associated with (So You Think’s dam) Triassic”.

While Mr Moran is not opposing the fact that Smith owns Triassic, he himself is lodging a counterclaim in relation to his entitlements to any future foals Triassic may have.

Mr Moran was the one who purchased Triassic on behalf of Ms Smith at a broodmare sale in 2005.

The ownership of the horse was then split so each party possessed a 50 per cent share in the mare.

The problem lies in the fact that Ms Smith alleges that Mr Moran sold her his 50 per cent share in Triassic in March, 2007.

Justice Peters provided a detailed summary of the case.

“As I understand the defendants’ position, their case is that in fact there was no sale,” Justice Peters said.

Mr Moran is claiming that they allowed Ms Smith to attempt to breed from Triassic, giving her 100 per cent ownership of the new foal.

The is allegedly in order to make up for the fact that Ms Smith sold her half share in a horse named La Souvenir, and now regrets doing so.

“The defendants contend they were willing to allow the Smiths to seek to breed a filly from Triassic, which the Smiths would own outright,” Justice Peters said.

“This was to mitigate the fact that the Smiths had sold their 50 per cent share in La Souvenir, a sale which appeared increasingly likely to have been unwise.”

Ms Smith is unfazed by the counter claim from Mr Moran and is currently researching potential sires for Triassic’s next matching.

“If they want to take me back to court that’s their prerogative,” she said.

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