Ernie Paragallo has hired Dick Lundy as his private trainer. This winter, Lundy will have divisions of Paragallo's Paraneck Stable at Aqueduct and Fair Grounds. In the summer, the trainer will be based on the New York circuit.
"He's as good a horseman as there is," said Paragallo, who was interviewed on Monday at the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic Eastern fall yearling sale in Maryland.
Jennifer Leigh-Pedersen, who had been overseeing Paragallo's runners, will go back to being a farm manager. She also will break and prepare Paraneck's young horses for racing.
"When Jennifer took over the string back in March, we had some early success," Paragallo said. "But she has two kids who have got to go to school, so she can't do this full-time. So I looked for a horseman, and actually there aren't many of them around, real good ones. I wanted to hold out until I found one who was among the best out there. I wanted someone who was experienced and who could train the type of horses that we have. He (Lundy) has experience with horses that run in classic races, and I work well with him."
Lundy trained champion Blushing John, and he also saddled other talented runners such as Carr de Naskra and Jade Hunter. A former assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Charlie Whittingham, Lundy once worked for Virginia Kraft Payson. He took a private job with Allen Paulson late in 1988. But that association ended when Lundy was sued by Paulson in 1992 for fraud. At issue were a number of bloodstock transactions that took place over a two-year-period, including the private sale of Loach. Lundy resigned from his position with Paulson.
"It wasn't of any concern to me," said Paragallo of Lundy's past. "I was just looking for a good horseman."
Paragallo said he owns nearly 275 horses now, including broodmares. At the Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale on Monday, Paragallo's purchases included a $120,000 Unbridled's Song -- Dreams of Glory filly and a $100,000 Grindstone -- Worldly Nell colt. New Jersey bloodstock agent Buzz Chace represented Paragallo in the transactions.