Summer Wind: ‘Hopefully, the Industry Will Change’ After Love Me Only Trial

by | 11.06.2014 | 4:40pm
Jane Lyon of Summer Wind Farm testifies in lawsuit against previous owners and consignor of Love Me Only

Jane Lyon and Summer Wind Farm released the following statement to media the week after a jury failed to reach a decision in a court case between Summer Wind and Coolmore partners, Ashford Stud, and Eaton Sales surrounding the purchase of the broodmare Love Me Only.

The mare was purchased for $2.1 million at the Keeneland November Breeding Stock Sale in 2011. The jury deliberated for eight hours following a trial in Fayette County Circuit Court in central Kentucky, and concluded on Oct. 29 that it could not determine whether the Lyons were defrauded by the defendants in their purchase of the horse, who was given phenylbutazone on the sale grounds and diagnosed with laminitis after the auction. The Lyons also charged the former owners and agents with concealing an unsuccessful breeding of Love Me Only to Danehill Dancer in Feb. 2011. The mare produced a foal by Sea the Stars from a later breeding that year, and has foaled each year since. The Lyons sought a refund, punitive damages, and wanted the sale rescinded.

 We never wanted a court case. We especially did not intend to try it in the Press.

Even if we did not WIN our case this time…We also did not LOSE it.

Coolmore did not WIN theirs.

We had a legitimate cause. Yes, we got a beautiful mare with a great pedigree…with CHRONIC LAMINITIS. A young mare who, without the dedicated and brilliant work of Dr. Brian Fraley, might not be alive today. We will continue to give her the love and care that we give all of our horses, and hopefully she will remain stable.

Perhaps the fact that the mare was lame at the sale, given medications, that the records were altered, and the truth was withheld was all a coincidence … and did not conclusively prove fraud with every juror.

Perhaps some of the jurors believed the Coolmore group really did not remember that they had bred Love Me Only in February to a different stallion…and just forgot to put it in the catalogue!

Perhaps some of the jurors believed that the Coolmore group really forgot her injury was in 2010, not the year she was bred and sold…2011.

Perhaps some of the jurors believed that the Coolmore group did not know that their consignor was constantly changing his records!

Perhaps some of the jurors believed the Coolmore group when they said “IT ISN'T MY PROBLEM”.

But not all of the jurors. Not enough of the jurors to vindicate the Coolmore group and prove they didn't know.

So be it.

They did not WIN. We did not WIN.

But the integrity of this business that we love DID LOSE!

Our lives won't change because of this trial.

Their lives won't change because of this trial.

But, hopefully, the industry WILL change to insist on integrity and transparency so buyers and sellers can once again be proud to participate in it.

Sincerely,

Jane Lyon

Summer Wind Farm

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