A jury determined a leading cutting horse trainer is entitled to $4.1 million in damages stemming from a partnership involving two high profile cutting horse stallions.
Federal jurors last month reached a verdict awarding trainer Beau Galyean, of Fort Worth, Texas, that sum as compensatory damages they say he was owed by horse owner Thomas Guinn, of Philadelphia, Mississippi. The dispute centered around a verbal partnership agreement Galyean claimed he had with Guinn involving EquiStat Elite $4 Million Sire Metallic Rebel and multiple aged-event champion Rollz Royce.
The jury reached its decision on July 14 at the conclusion of the trial, which began on July 10. It was held in U.S. District Court in Fort Worth, Texas.
Galyean declined to comment on the verdict, but his attorney, Greg Shamoun, said it shows that while people tend to think oral agreements aren’t valid or enforceable, that isn’t the case. In a business like the horse industry, where many deals are done on a handshake, he said it’s important to know oral agreements can be enforced.
“So, if anyone in the horse business decides that they want to breach an oral agreement, I think this case serves to remind them that there is a remedy,” he said.
When reached by telephone, Guinn said he wasn’t able to comment on the verdict because the legal proceedings were ongoing.
“The only thing I can really tell and make a comment on is, it’s not over yet,” Guinn said Thursday afternoon. “And, that’s all I can tell you.”
Though the jury has delivered a verdict, final judgement in the case — when a judge settles all outstanding issues — has not yet been scheduled. Attorneys from both parties had until today —Monday, Aug. 7 — to schedule all remaining issues they plan to ask the judge to consider before the case concludes, according to court documents.
“While there was a jury trial and jury verdict, there was no judgement yet,” said Amy Ganci, one of Guinn’s attorneys. “The case won’t be complete until the judge decides certain legal issues.”
Galyean had sued Guinn in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Texas, alleging he broke the verbal agreement in 2021 when he removed Metallic Rebel and Rollz Royce from Beau Galyean Stallion Services, where they had stood at stud, and reportedly took them to his Mississippi ranch. Later, the stallions were moved to Brazos Valley Stallion Station in Stephenville, Texas, where they still stand at stud today.
In his complaint, Galyean claimed the agreement was that Guinn would buy the horses and pay their medical expenses while Galyean would manage their health and training. In addition, Galyean would provide food and water for the horses, and house them free of charge at his breeding facility while maintaining custody of the horses.
Each partner was to receive 50% of each stallion’s show earnings. In addition, the split was 75% to Guinn and 25% to Galyean on any stud fee profits, money from the sale of the horses or other operational profits, according to the trainer’s complaint.
Guinn disputed in court documents that there ever was a partnership, alleging Galyean gave no indication in multiple documents that the stallions were partnership property — referring to them as being owned by Guinn. In addition, Guinn claimed both horses were also listed on the Beau Galyean Stallion Services website as being owned by Tom Guinn. The Mississippi cutting horse owner is listed as the sole owner of the horses in American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) records. There are no references on either stallion’s AQHA records of them ever being owned in a partnership.
Furthermore, Guinn also alleged that veterinarians found Rollz Royce suffered from low semen concentration and lameness while under Galyean’s management and that Guinn was billed for and paid for services he says Galyean claimed were contributed as part of the trainer’s part of the alleged partnership.
Metallic Rebel and Rollz Royce were both extremely successful show horses in the cutting industry.
After a career that included winning National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Open Horse of the Year and more than $437,965 in purse money, Metallic Rebel (Metallic Cat x Sweet Abra x Abrakadabracre) has so far sired the winners of more than $4 million. His most successful offspring to date is 2022 NCHA Open Horse of the Year Third Edge, a winner of $328,115 with victories that include the NCHA Super Stakes and Summer Spectacular Open championships.
Rollz Royce is a freshman sire whose oldest foals reached futurity age this year. A popular sire, the stallion currently has 117 AQHA-registered 3-year-olds in his first crop and another 107 AQHA-registered 2-year-olds born in 2021, according to online AQHA records. A son of EquiStat Elite $12 Million Sire Dual Smart Rey, Rollz Royce is out of EquiStat Elite $2 Million Producer Show Biz Kitty (by High Brow Cat). He earned more than $353,872 in the show pen with wins such as the NCHA Summer Spectacular Open Classic Championship and NCHA Super Stakes Open Classic Championship. He was inducted into the NCHA Hall of Fame in 2020.