Wallace Joins St. Elias, Gandharvi Teams

Michael Wallace | Magic Millions Photo

Michael Wallace has accepted roles working for Vinnie and Teresa Viola's St. Elias Stable as well as Kuldeep Singh Rajput's Gandharvi Racing Stables, the bloodstock agent told the TDN Tuesday. Wallace served as Chief Operating Officer of the China Horse Club before leaving that post at the end of last year. He will serve as a sales and bloodstock consultant for St. Elias and an overall bloodstock manager for Gandharvi.

“It's a wonderful opportunity to work with two great business minds, really,” Wallace said. “You can learn a lot off of them in terms of business and the way they think about things.”

St. Elias has been one of the more active participants in the yearling market in recent years, particularly in partnership with Mike Repole's Repole Stable. Last year, the two powerful New York-based operations spent nearly $17.5 million together on yearlings at the major U.S. auctions.

Wallace said that partnership will continue at this year's sales.

“They already have their teams in place, and they will continue in their roles,” he said. “I'll just quietly slot into those teams and offer an opinion where I can.”

He added, “I took a bit of time off earlier in the year, and it was a nice call to get from that operation asking if I would join them and assist their team. I feel very privileged to get a call from the Viola family and Rory Babich. I'm excited about that for sure.”

Gandharvi, meanwhile, is in its relative infancy. Rajput, founder and CEO of the digital health company Biofourmis, emerged on the radar last year, and partnered with China Horse Club on three yearlings at the 2021 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga sale (see Rajput Makes Most of Spa Trip), and another nine at Keeneland September for $3.765 million. Gandharvi has remained very active in the international market, and has even gotten into the claiming game, teaming up with Michael Dubb and trainer Rob Atras to claim next-out stakes winner and recent GII Delaware H. runner-up Battle Bling (Vancouver {Aus}) for $62,500.

“Kuldeep Singh is a very intelligent, great business man. He's an exciting addition to the Thoroughbred industry worldwide. I met him last year, and he reached out–he has a growing portfolio of horses and asked if I'd step in and look after the management of them. Obviously, I was more than happy to do that.”

Gandharvi celebrated a first victory at Saratoga last week when Impulsiveness (Quality Road), a $280,000 OBSJUN '21 acquisition, graduated at second asking while stretching out on the grass for Todd Pletcher.

“It was great for them to experience that and have a winner at such a great place–hopefully the first of many,” Wallace said.

Wallace expects both entities to be active at the upcoming Fasig Saratoga sales: “Any time there's a yearling sale of that quality, you've got to be there and see what's available. No preconceived plans–just see what's put in front of us and go from there.”

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