With an agonized mixture of loyalty and feelings of betrayal, an Argentine veterinarian acknowledged tonight that his friend and sometime employer, Dr. Mark Gerard of Muttontown LI, had once asked him to find a ‘cheap’ horse with markings similar to those of a good horse Gerard had already decided to buy.
He spoke of the Argentine horses Chirico and Sundoro which were acquired by him for Gerard for shipment to the United States. He said Dr. Gerard first decided to buy Chirico, a 5-year-old who had won three or four races here and earned about $18,000. He described the horse as a reddish bay without white markings.
While Chirico was waiting for a place on a cargo plane to the United States, the vet was surprised by a call from Dr. Gerard who told him that his wife wanted a saddle horse and asked him to find a cheap thoroughbred, specifying that it, too, be a bay without white markings.
“I was somewhat suspicious, because in quarter-horse races down here they sometimes switch animals, and the easiest ones to switch are those without markings,” he said. However, he said, he went about fulfilling the request and soon found Sundoro, a 6-year-old dark bay without markings who had won one race in an undistinguised career.
“I don’t know what happened with those horses in the States,” the vet went on. “But I’m very concerned that there may be a problem because I am concerned about the reputation of Argenine horses. This is the only way I can find for washing away my stupidness. I was used by Mike Gerard as a useful idiot.”
Ex NYT 11/9/77