09/08/2004 11:00PM

Smarty's stud fee: $100,000


LEXINGTON, Ky. - Smarty Jones will stand his first season at Three Chimneys for a $100,000 fee, the farm announced Thursday.

That figure was in line with expectations following the popular 2004 Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner's syndication in June for $39 million. Smarty Jones is the latest in a line of recent high-caliber colts to start their careers with a six-figure fee, including Fusaichi Pegasus at $150,000 and Lemon Drop Kid at $100,000 in 2001; Giant's Causeway at $135,000 and Point Given at $125,000 in 2002; and Mineshaft and Empire Maker at $100,000 in 2004.

Smarty Jones's book will be limited to 110 mares, and the colt will not shuttle to the Southern Hemisphere.

Smarty Jones, whose sole career loss came in his final start in the Belmont Stakes, arrived at Three Chimneys on Aug. 16. Breeders Roy and Pat Chapman, who campaigned the 3-year-old Elusive Quality colt, retained half of the 60 shares in the syndication. Three Chimneys bought the rest and offered shares at $650,000 each. Those shares are sold out.

"We were oversubscribed for shares in Smarty Jones and have had immense interest in him amongst breeders," said Three Chimneys owner Robert Clay. "Indeed, we began this week giving breeders the option of buying four-year contracts for Smarty Jones seasons, so that they can be assured they will have a season to the horse each of the first four years he is at stud."

The $100,000 first-year fee didn't surprise bloodstock agents in central Kentucky.

"That's pretty much what everyone expected," said Lincoln Collins of the Kern Lillingston agency. "I imagine seasons will be hard to come by."

If shareholders in the colt, as expected, use their seasons on their own stock, a breeding session with Smarty Jones could be difficult for non-shareholders to get. Smarty Jones's race record, his status as a son of successful young sire Elusive Quality, and his vast popularity make him a fashionable prospect. But some warn that the recent spate of new six-figure stallions may make competition fierce.

"I'm not surprised he's a six-figure horse, and I think he'll have no trouble filling his book, given his sex appeal," said agent Michael S. Brown. "But we have a plethora of six-figure stallions all of a sudden, and I don't know if we have the mares to support that many stallions at that level."