Trevor and Tiffiny Bond, owners of Smokin Gun Performance Horses, of Mound Valley, Kansas, recently announced their acquisition of the late Smart Chic Olena, along with the inventory of his frozen semen and all breeding rights. The World Champion and National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Hall of Fame stallion was euthanized in June of 2012, at the age of 27. At the time of the stallion’s death, he was owned by Bill Richardson, of Whitesboro, Texas, who had obtained the stallion through the Chapter 11 Trustee of Babcock Quarter Horses Inc.
“It was a long process; we had purchased semen from the bankruptcy trustee to breed our mares. After multiple purchases over a couple years, the trustee approached us in the fall of 2014 and informed us that the courts needed him to close the case,” Trevor Bond explained. “The options for the remaining semen were to sell it or destroy it. We hated the thought of losing his legacy this way, so we began putting together a purchase arrangement. The biggest hurdle was that the bankruptcy was set up that in order to register a foal, breeder’s permits had to be purchased in advance, which was just cost prohibitive.
“That’s when the idea of purchasing ‘Chic’s’ papers and breeding rights came up,” Bond continued. “I contacted Richardson, who had possession of the stallion when he died, and offered to purchase his papers and rights. Due to court stipulations, Richardson had the registration papers but didn’t have current breeding rights; those were controlled by the court until closure of the case. The purchase was being finalized when Richardson suddenly passed away in December 2014. Thankfully, his daughter honored the deal, and we were able to proceed with the purchase. Turns out it’s an extensive process to purchase a dead horse.”
“We received the registration papers in January 2015,” Tiffiny Bond added. “That’s when the long transfer process began. Although we had the registration papers, no assets – including the transfer of ownership – could be finalized until the closure of the bankruptcy, since the stallion was an asset claimed in the bankruptcy.”
From the time the bankruptcy was filed in 2009 until closure, the court had custody and control of all assets, which included the registration papers, and cloning and breeding rights. Once the bankruptcy was settled and closed, which happened recently, all ownership rights were transferred to the Bonds, who confirmed that no clone of Smart Chic Olena was ever created.