08/29/2002 12:00AM

Mulhall denies 'War' offering


DEL MAR, Calif. - Richard Mulhall, the president of The Thoroughbred Corporation, on Thursday labeled "completely baseless" a front-page article in The New York Times that claimed the Saudi Arabian royal family was considering donating War Emblem to the victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

"I don't know where that come from," Mulhall said. "It's completely baseless."

The Times article focused on the Saudi government's attempts to "improve its image among Americans" by hiring lobbyists and buying national television advertisements. Included in the article was the claim that the royal family "has considered presenting the racehorse that won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes this year as a gift to the victims' families."

An "adviser to the family" was cited as the source.

The article said War Emblem "would be part of the commemoration at Ground Zero" in two weeks.

Prince Ahmed bin Salman, who raced as The Thoroughbred Corporation, died in July. His younger brother, Prince Faisal, is the executor of the estate.

"I called Prince Faisal, and he knows nothing about this," Mulhall said. "To say the royal family is deciding this is baseless. The royal family is literally thousands of people. War Emblem belongs to the estate of Prince Ahmed. They're not giving him away."