British show jumper Ben Maher and his longtime owners Mike and Emma Phillips have reached an agreement settling legal disputes between them. In December, the Phillipses of Quainton Stud filed two civil law suits against Maher, one seeking the sale of his partner for team gold at the 2012 London Olympic Games, Tripple X III, and the other alleging that Maher misrepresented the prices of horses he sold for them and pocketed 700,000 euros in “secret profits” from sales of their horses during their eight-year professional relationship.
In April Tripple X, who had been owned by Quainton Stud in partnership with Maher, was sold to Eric Lamaze’s Torrey Pines Stables. Tiffany Foster now rides the 12-year-old Anglo-European stallion (Namelus R—Calve Z, Cantango) for Artisan Farms LLC.
Quainton Stud released a statement on their website today, July 11:
“Michael and Emma Phillips are satisfied that the financial settlement made to them is an acceptable amount that takes into account all the remaining areas of dispute and their legal expenses. The terms of the settlement are confidential but Ben Maher recognizes that Michael and Emma Phillips together with Quainton Stud LLP (of whom they are the sole members) were loyal owners who were instrumental in helping to advance his career to the highest levels in show jumping and for that he will always be grateful. With the benefit of hindsight, he accepts that there were aspects of his working relationship with them that should have been dealt with in a different manner.
"Ben Maher wishes to apologize sincerely for any inconvenience, distress or embarrassment that may have been caused to Michael and Emma Phillips and is grateful to them for their willingness to allow the matter to be resolved. Ben Maher wishes Michael and Emma Phillips continued success in their show jumping breeding program and their high level of involvement in show jumping as top owners and breeders. There will be no further comment on this matter.”