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Valuable colt Zoustar is at the centre of an ownership dispute involving BC3 Thoroughbreds ahead of his return to the track later this month.

Racing NSW chief executive Peter V’landys confirmed authorities had received correspondence from the administrators of BC3 but said there was no question Zoustar would be allowed to run.

BC3 went into voluntary administration late last year amid controversy over non-payment of yearlings and a scandal surrounding a punters’ club operated by former chairman Bill Vlahos.

The multi-million deal to stand Zoustar at Widden Stud was made in the days leading up to the Chris Waller-trained colt’s victory in the Group One Coolmore Stud Stakes in November.

Victoria’s Woodside Stud is also a partner while Melbourne Cup winning owner Sheikh Fahad al Thani bought into Zoustar earlier this year.

“We have had correspondence from the administrators of BC3,” V’landys said.

“It is our understanding one of the owners sold a share to BC3, then when BC3 withdrew from the sale, they sold to the sheikh.

“But the BC3 administrators believe they had a sale and are questioning the change in ownership.

“The ultimate decision is with us as to whether he races and it would be unfair all owners if we were to stop the horse from running.

“At this stage I can’t see any reason why he won’t run.

“If the dispute got heated we would withhold the prize money and whenever it was settled we would release it.

“It really is a civil matter. All we want is to ensure the correct owners are in the race book.”

Zoustar is scheduled to begin his autumn campaign in the Group One Canterbury Stakes (1300m) on March 15 with the $2.5 million TJ Smith Stakes four weeks later among his goals.

A trip to Royal Ascot has also been mooted.

 
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