La Gurriere, brought top price of $610,000 at the Wiimborne Farm dispersal.

La Gurriere, brought top price of $610,000 at the Wiimborne Farm dispersal.

Anne M. Eberhardt

La Gueriere Tops Wimborne Farm Dispersal At $610,000

La Gueriere, a grade I winner who produced multiple graded winner Lasting Approval, brought the top price of $610,000 during Diane Perkins' Wimborne Farm dispersal Saturday. Sold in foal to Louis Quatorze, the 14-year-old daughter of Lord At War was purchased by David Plummer of Classic Star. Plummer, a resident of Nevada, owns a Kentucky farm, Classic Star,that is located on 300 acres of land purchased from Three Chimneys Farm. He is building up a commercial broodmare herd. The immediate underbidder was British bloodstock agent Joss Collins.

Earlier this year, Plummer bought a share in Our Emblem, and he plans to breed La Gueriere to the stallion, who is the sire of 2002 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness (gr. I) winner War Emblem.

"We weren't interested in anything but her," said Plummer, who also is in the natural gas business. "I think she came with a lot of history. When we walked around to the barn here about 10 minutes ago, I noticed that sitting on the ground was the father's and mother's head stones. And we like history. She's a great mare. She's a grade I winner, and that's what we try to get."

La Gueriere is the 47th mare that has been purchased in the last year or so by Plummer. He plans to have a band of approximately 75.

Trained by Perkins' late husband, Peter, La Gueriere captured the 1991 Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Stakes (gr. IT) at Keeneland. She is a half-sister to grade I winner and millionaire Al Mamoon (by Believe It), grade III winner Lost Soldier, and stakes winner Born Wild. She also is a full sister to stakes winner Lord of Warriors.

"That was a good price; I think it was fine," Perkins said. "She's been wonderful to me, and I have her son (Lasting Approval), who is my stallion. And I was proud of the way the Lasting Approval yearlings looked that I sold. Hopefully, they will go on to justify my high opinion of him."

In all, five mare-and-foal combinations and 80 other horses sold for a gross of $3,268,700 and an average of $38,455.The auction was organized by Bruce Hundley of Saxony Management and was conducted by Keith Babb and Associates of Monroe, La., under a big tent at Wimborne near Paris, Ky. Even though all the horses offered were listed as sold, Perkins said she bought back several.

"It was almost like a wedding; I felt like I was walking down the aisle," said Perkins, who waved to the crowd and called out thank yous after the last horse went through the sale ring. "I had to sell away what I loved the most after my children and my husband (the late Peter Perkins). I got emotional when it came down to the yearlings (who sold last) because I suddenly saw the ones that were going to the races next year. And that kind of took my breath away. The mares, I love and know most of them. Some of them I trained. They were my pals, and I think they will have good homes. But when it came to the yearlings, all of a sudden I realized that those were the competitors."

Perkins recently bought a home close to The Thoroughbred Center near Lexington. She will continue to train a stable of racehorses. Several of her mares were not offered in the dispersal--two because they are blind and others because they are leased to other breeders. The Wimborne Farm property was sold at auction on Friday.

In an interview in June, Perkins said she decided to reduce her holdings in the Thoroughbred business because "it's all become too much, and I'm not doing a good job on any front." Perkins' husband died in 1996.

Also bringing six-figure prices during the dispersal were the following:

The graded winner Added Asset, a Lord At War mare who is in foal to Defrere, was purchased for $120,000 by Kentucky bloodstock agent Charles Boden, who was representing Helen K. Groves.

The graded winner Cuando Puede, a Lord At War mare who is in foal to Souvenir Copy, was purchased for $285,000 by Claiborne Farm president Seth Hancock, as agent for Stuart Janney.

Cuando Quiere, (the dam of Cuando Puede) and her filly foal by Lasting Approval, was purchased by Boden as agent for Keene Ridge Farm. Cuando Quiere is in foal to Lasting Approval.

Cuanto Es (by Exbourne), a graded stakes-placed half-sister to Cuando Puede, was purchased for $180,000 by Flaxman Holdings. She is in foal to Louis Quatorze.

Cunning, a stakes-placed daughter of Lord At War, was purhcased for $150,000 by Hancock.