IEAH Stables announced March 30 the completion of its purchase of a half-interest in Gotham Stakes (gr. III) winner I Want Revenge from David Lanzman. Mike Iavarone, president of IEAH, said Jeff Mullins will continue to train the colt.
“The deal has been in the works for a while,” said bloodstock agent Nick Sallusto, who handled the transaction. “It was just a matter of ironing out the legalities. This colt is an amazing athlete and I couldn’t be happier with the acquisition.”
Iavarone, who said the colt vetted perfectly March 23, is eagerly awaiting his next start in the Wood Memorial (gr. I) April 4.
"This horse is the real deal," Iavarone said. "We’re thrilled to have such an enormous talent join our stable. He appears to be improving at the right time and I’m looking forward to a great working relationship with the preexisting connections. We’re all appreciative of the hard work Nick put into making this deal come together.”
I Want Revenge, a Kentucky-bred son of Stephen Got Even out of the stakes-winning Roy mare Meguial, ranks seventh on the most recent graded earnings list released by Churchill Downs with $324,000. In his most recent start, he scored a brilliant 8 ½-length victory in Aqueduct’s Gotham Stakes (gr. III) March 7, in which he earned a 113 Beyer speed figure. He worked a bullet five furlongs in :58 1/5 March 22 over Hollywood Park’s Cushion Track and then followed that up with another five-furlong drill in 1:00 March 29.
"I'm thrilled about the partnership," said Lanzman, who also bred the colt.. "I'm especially ecstatic to be where we're at because this is only the second horse I’ve ever bred out of my first broodmare."
I Want Revenge stormed onto California stakes scene last fall, fininshing a nose behind Pioneerof the Nile in the CashCall Futurity (gr. I) while coming off a maiden victory. In his first start in 2009, I Want Revenge finished third in the Robert B. Lewis Stakes (gr. II). Jockey Joe Talamo said the colt never handled the track, and it was then that Lanzman and Mullins decided to head east for the Gotham Stakes.
Lanzman's racing stable campaigned the California-based Squirtle Squirt who won the 2001 Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) and went on to win an Eclipse Award for champion sprinter that same year.
With the purchase of I Want Revenge and with leading 3-year-old filly Stardom Bound pointing toward the April 4 $400,000 Ashland Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland, IEAH now owns top contenders for both the Derby and the Kentucky Oaks.
Iavarone said he and trainer Rick Dutrow have not given up on their first 3-year-old purchase this year, Patena, after his eighth-place finish in the Louisiana Derby (gr. II).
“He was training like an absolute freak for the Louisiana Derby,” Iavarone said. “Rick has been around too many horses to make a call like that. I was hearing everything I wanted to hear. It was simply a case of him not handling the sloppy, sealed track. He made a good move on the far turn, but was working to get there, while the others in front of him were cruising. It was like a skating rink out there, and Robby (Albarado) said he was slipping in behind. It’s unfortunate, but this is why we chose this race. We knew we had the Blue Grass (gr. I) as a backup.
“If he had been beaten four lengths I’d say maybe he not a horse of this quality. But he wasn’t in the game at all, so we have to blame it on the track. I haven’t lost confidence in him. What would be amazing is if Patena comes back and runs huge in the Blue Grass.”
IEAH experienced a breakout year in 2008, when their runners earned over $10.7 million, winning 13 grade I stakes among their 25 stakes victories. They also sent out two champions -- top male sprinter Benny The Bull and top 3-year-old male Big Brown .