Race­horse buy­ers sue af­ter pay­ing big for ‘dud’

The Sunday Mail (Queensland) - - NEWS - KAY DIBBEN

A BRIS­BANE so­lic­i­tor and a Gold Coast busi­ness­man are su­ing for dam­ages af­ter pay­ing $168,000 for a race­horse they claim is a worth­less dud.

Busi­ness­man Les­lie Cow­ell and so­lic­i­tor Gre­gory Ryan bought Sokudo from an own­ers’ syn­di­cate through blood­stock agents af­ter a vet­eri­nary check.

In their District Court claim, they al­lege their agent was told by James Har­ron, di­rec­tor of James Har­ron Blood­stock, that the horse was “sound as a bell” and had no is­sues.

They claim Mr Har­ron told their agent the horse was be­ing sold by the own­ers’ syn­di­cate be­cause it was not up to breed­ing stan­dard.

They also claim the sale was sub­ject to a vet­eri­nary exam and that the pur­chase agree­ment had an im­plied term that the horse was rea­son­ably fit for rac­ing and was of “mer­chantable quality”.

Ac­cord­ing to doc­u­ments filed in court, a re­port by NSW vet Dr An­gela McLeod did not iden­tify any is­sue that would pre­vent Sokudo from rac­ing.

Mr Cow­ell and Mr Ryan paid $165,000 for the horse on July 18. It was later al­legedly found to suf­fer from a sig­nif­i­cant le­sion of the right front limb and a patho­log­i­cal as­so­ci­a­tion with the me­dial sus­pen­sory lig­a­ment at­tach­ment to the sesamoid bone. The buy­ers claim this made it un­fit as a race­horse.

They say Mr Har­ron made false rep­re­sen­ta­tions and his con­duct was mis­lead­ing or de­cep­tive. They also claim to have suf­fered a loss of $179,814 and will have to pay $1489 a month in ag­ist­ment and far­rier fees.

They say Sokudo has a fair mar­ket value of “nil” dol­lars.

They are su­ing James Har­ron Blood­stock, James Har­ron, mem­bers of the syn­di­cate, and Dr McLeod for dam­ages for al­legedly neg­li­gent mis­state­ment. They are also su­ing for dam­ages for breach of con­tract.

The de­fen­dants are yet to file their re­sponses.

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