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THE INSIDE TRACK

Favorite Trick Gets a 'Not for Sale' Sign

January 02, 1998|BILL CHRISTINE

Joe LaCombe said Thursday that his 60% interest in Favorite Trick, the future-book favorite for the Kentucky Derby, is not for sale.

This means that Patrick Byrne, who has taken a job as private trainer for Frank Stronach, will soon turn over Favorite Trick to another trainer. LaCombe expects to name a replacement quickly.

"Contrary to what I've heard," LaCombe said, "I've not been approached [by Stronach] to buy a piece of Favorite Trick. But I want to keep what I have. Now I can't say whether [Stronach] has been talking to anyone at Walmac International."

Walmac is a large breeding farm in Lexington, Ky. Byrne, in announcing his five-year contract with Stronach on Wednesday, had suggested that Stronach might try to buy an interest in Favorite Trick, so that Byrne might remain trainer of the undefeated colt.

LaCombe said Walmac owns 40% of the horse.

Favorite Trick completed an unbeaten campaign with a victory in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile at Hollywood Park on Nov. 8.

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