02/24/2010 12:00AM

Lanzman files new suit vs. IEAH


The owners of I Want Revenge could be headed back to court as David Lanzman has sued his partners, the IEAH Stables, for breach of contract. The suit was filed Tuesday in Fayette Circuit Court in Kentucky.

According to Lanzman, he has a signed agreement with IEAH to buy out his half-interest in I Want Revenge for $550,000. Initially, IEAH was supposed to pay the money on Feb. 12. The company asked for and was granted an extension until Feb. 19, at which time IEAH asked for another extension until March 1, according to Lanzman. Lanzman agreed to that extension on condition that IEAH pay $300,000 by Feb. 19 and the remainder on March 1. No payments were made, according to Lanzman and Michael Iavarone, president of IEAH.

"At that point, they stopped returning phone calls and stopped returning e-mails," Lanzman said.

On Wednesday, Iavarone said that it is his company's intention to buy Lanzman out of I Want Revenge and race him.

I Want Revenge has not raced since he won the Grade 1 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct last April 4. He was scratched from the Kentucky Derby the morning of the race due to an ankle injury, which was the beginning of the end of this partnership. Both parties filed suit against each other during the summer, though neither case was heard.

Following the Derby, Lanzman sent the horse to La Croix Farm in La Grange, Ky. Lanzman allowed IEAH to ship the horse to Rood and Riddle Equine Clinic in Lexington to be evaluated for a possible return to racing. IEAH should have shipped the horse back to La Croix, Lanzman said, but instead shipped him to another farm without Lanzman's approval.

In addition to seeking the $550,000, Lanzman's suit seeks interest on the money owed, as well as unspecified punitive damages for IEAH taking possession of the horse and other costs including lawyer's fees.

Iavarone on Wednesday questioned whether shipping I Want Revenge to another farm constituted taking possession of the horse.

"As soon as we had the horse past a couple of days we mysteriously owned the horse?" said Iavarone, who questioned Lanzman's motives for wanting to sell I Want Revenge, "for a guy who supposedly loved this horse to the end."

Asked why he'd want to be bought out of I Want Revenge by IEAH, Lanzman said, "I hate them more than I love the horse.''

Lanzman said that from last June until November he had offered to buy IEAH out of its half-interest in the colt for $1.2 million, but rescinded that offer on Nov. 6 when he was told by several breeders he talked with at the Breeders' Cup that the horse wasn't worth that much.