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  1. #81
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    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    If you honestly do not care either way, then you are doing the trainer a favor by letting her use your horse. I have let people use my horse in clinics; I did not care either way if they horse went but was happy to let them use him.

    But you really do want the horse shown, and clearly very much enjoy the success he is having with the trainer. You want to make a proposal instead of leaving it up to her to pick up the ball or drop it because you DO want the horse shown. You claim you are just doing her a favor with financing her rise through the ranks, but you also are uncomfortable with leaving the door open to her shrugging and dropping the deal.

    If she says "He only goes to the shows you pay for, sorry," would you change your tune? If you honestly don't care, the answer is clearly no, you wouldn't. Horse would stay home and everyone would be happy.

    Hey, if the shows are just a favor you are doing to her business on your dime, you won't care either way. It can be up to her what she wants to do if you leave her the option to still use the horse.

    But if you actually kind of like the deal you have here, think about what it would feel like to you to lose it entirely. Then view who is doing who what service from those eyes.
    While I don't think the trainer is "doing me a favor", to further clarify my standpoint, I am fine with footing the bill for the local/regional shows. It is good experience for my horse. I am not OK with footing all of the bills for the horse to compete on the small tour...then eventually the large tour. I am ok at that point saying no, although it would be difficult because the trainer is so in love with the horse and the idea of riding him to the"top". I'm not great at dashing dreams, but again, like I've said...there is such a thing as being realistic when I'm not a multi-millionaire.


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  2. #82
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    Maybe you could offer her a percentage of the horse in exchange for a reduction in training rates? That would provide her with some security that you weren't just going to send the horse elsewhere or sell it. You could also offer to help her look for sponsors. Some people just aren't good at it and hate doing it.


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  3. #83
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    Quote Originally Posted by halteralter View Post
    First off, I don't see any reason why I shouldn't propose an agreement but I'd also be open to the trainer proposing one as well.
    You are right, you can propose an agreement and you should be open to your trainer's suggestion.


    Of course I can pull the horse out of shows, but I'd like to not hurt my relationship with the trainer,
    This business now. No feelings!

    You can decide whatever you pocket dictates you. You could keep the horse in training and not showing. You could put him in pasture, sell him, whatever.

    Your relationship with this trainer has nothing to do with what you're going to do with the horse.


    and perhaps try to work out an amicable agreement for the 2 of us whereby she can continue to climb the competitive ladder with this horse while benefitting herself in the process. But it is not going to happen all on my dime.
    It ought to be an amicable agreement. Both of you need to be happy and serious about what is going to happen.

    But you cannot expect the trainer to foot the bill for most of the expense since she probably is fairly new in this business and not that fortunate. She might pass at the opportunity because she lacks the funds. And business wise, she might just decide to start back with other horses she has in training and let you go to another trainer.

    My trainer has 2 horses in training that the owners pay all show expenses + training fee, that is how he lives (plus all his students and other horses in training/buying/selling). They are on full board training like everyone elses. Owners get to go to top shows, have VIP tables and all the show setting ready for them to enjoy. They do have the money to foot the bill. One of the owner had a bad year and reduced the showing and had the assistant trainer do half of the rides on the horse. They pick their shows, they decide which classes they enter in and get to brag at the last jump when they win.


    However, if her training rates climb wildly, I do expect some concession given the circumstances...to be grandfathered in perhaps. Especially if I am still paying for all of the show fees etc.
    You can always expect anything you want and yes, it would be a nice gesture from her part and probably a wise thing to do in order to keep a promising horse under her saddle but....she might have other reasons not to.


    Again, you need to sit down with your trainer and have a real conversation.



  4. #84
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    Aug. 14, 2004
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    in the end I think you need to get very clear on what YOU want and what TRAINER wants. Right now you have a contract for training. period.

    It sounds like now it is going from a training situation to a campaigning situation.


    Its kind of like a company hires someone for job A - this job is 20 hours a week at X amount of wages. Hired person decides on their own to work 40 hours a week and expect to get paid for it.

    Since it is clear the relationship is changing, OP needs a new additional contract that specifies what she is willing to pay for and what not.

    If the trainer is smart she will find the way to pay for what she wants as it sounds like it is a clear and direct improvement to her marketability and client base.

    good luck!



  5. #85
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    Sep. 12, 2007
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    Happiness is relative to expectations. I think both you and the trainer might both rest easier if you spoke about the future and if at all possible got a contract in writing that spells things out clearly.

    As a trainer I know that every training relationship I enter is a dual relationship. Because I am the trainer, I am the expert and therefore the boss. Because the client pays me to work with an animal she owns, she is the boss. This dual relationship, where I am both the employee and the boss, by its nature leads to complications. You are also in a dual relationship, being both the boss and the client.

    Trainers can get really proprietary over the horses they love and maybe that is happening to you. I have even had a trainer say over and over "my horses" when they actually belonged to the owner. Having been an owner in that arrangement (I am into dual relationships), it made me feel bad. I felt like I wasn't getting any credit or support or even acknowledgement for my part in the deal.

    Which led me to my new resolution in horse training. Every horse is a team effort, between rider, owner, management, grooms, vets, accupuncturists, stable hands, saddle fitters, psychics, whoever comes in contact with the horse. The best decisions are always what is right for the horse.

    You, my altered friend, are going to have to decide not only if you want to be a team player, but if you want to be the team leader, because it sounds like one is in order here.

    PS There no kickbacks, as we all know the answer, "How do you make a small fortune from horses?" Start with a large one. But it sounds like you feel you are being taken advantage of. The most you can expect is some allo-grooming--you scratch my back and I'll scratch yours. That can feel pretty good.
    Last edited by narcisco; Apr. 23, 2013 at 12:13 PM. Reason: PS


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  6. #86
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    Nov. 8, 2001
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    Cambridge, IA
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    Do not confuse a sponsorhip with free money for good riding only. Riders get sponsorships because they are successful, but also because they are good spokespeople/representatives for their products. (Look at Tiger Woods who lost a lot of sponsorships when he lost control of his personal life. He was still a great golfer.) Any sponsorship relationship is like a garden. It has to be tended to produce. If your trainer is not only a good rider, but also a good representative and can cultivate and continually work the deal with the sponsor effectively, good on her. You know you are associating with an intelligent person who has her stuff together. Nice to know and payment enough.

    Agree on the idea of just sitting down and talking about it. Write some notes ahead of time and ask her to as well, then sit down and calmly discuss. Do not bring your boyfriend since it is not his money.


    3 members found this post helpful.

  7. #87
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    Nov. 1, 2001
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    I had a feeling from your posts that you were writing from experience. I know you say you don't begrudge the trainer anything in your situation, but do you feel like there was a lack of appreciation maybe?
    It is way after the fact for me. This all happened about 20 years ago.
    Though people still remember my old trainer and the horse, no one remembers that it was actually my horse And it doesn't bother me at all. I learned so much from the experience, got to see a horse trained to I2 from basically scratch and witnessed (and contributed to) the development of a professional's career. I know that the professional in question views the situation similarly. We respect each other and are still friends. And in the end, I recouped much, but certainly not all, that I put into the situation financially. That's a rare thing in the horse world It was a very positive experience for me.

    I think the issue of "lack of appreciation" is a reaction to many comments made by trainers here. You took your horse to a trainer to be worked while you recovered and now that has morphed into the competing at CDIs. While that's great, it is not necessarily what you asked for or needed. You've been pretty clear about that here. I don't see why you should foot the bill for that (unless you want to). And it does sound like your trainer lead you in this direction and has developed a proprietary attitude about your horse that aligns not coincidently with her self interests. Anyone who loves dressage and competition would be excited about this. However these situations often spin out of control and end badly.

    You seem to have your head on your shoulders about this. I'm sure it will work out well.
    See those flying monkeys? They work for me.


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  8. #88
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    Quote Originally Posted by mbm View Post
    in the end I think you need to get very clear on what YOU want and what TRAINER wants. Right now you have a contract for training. period.
    After reading through this whole thing, I think this bears repeating. It seems pretty clear that YOU (the paying owner) and TRAINER (the business being paid to provide a service) have quite different goals for this horse. You seem to have wanted someone to put some time on your horse while you were out of commission, with appropriate showing as necessary for training purposes - Trainer sees horse as her ride to the top - that Next Big Thing complete with financial backing from owner that will make her famous and realize all her dreams. And I'm guessing that the two agendas separated at the point in the training process where she realized the horse's talent and potential and, for lack of a better word, convinced you to go along for the ride. I get the impression that you do not want to disappoint her or be the dark cloud on her sunny day of fame, but at the same time if *your* goal for *your* horse is NOT centrally focused around making him a big and successful CDI horse, you need to have a sit down with trainer and explain that you want X, Y and Z out of this horse and though you appreciate the quality of training and success that she has achieved with him, that A, B and C (campaigning at CDI's, for example) are not necessary to do that, nor are they in the budget.

    Classic case of Trainer pushing Trainer's own agenda with little regard for Client's agenda, at the expense of Client.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson


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  9. #89
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    Mar. 8, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heinz 57 View Post
    Classic case of Trainer pushing Trainer's own agenda with little regard for Client's agenda, at the expense of Client.
    Yes and no as I think both the owner and the rider weren't expecting such result in first place and then, the owner haven't yet expressed any kind of disagreement or exposed the real financial situation to the rider regarding this new goal of CDI small tour and big tour! They both probably got a bit blinded by the day to day improvement of the horse's habilities and now, that's where they are.

    They need to plan the futur of this business relationship.



  10. #90
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    FWIW, if I found myself with a horse that could do Big Things, I'd want to try hard to support that.

    For me, that would mean that I wanted my horse to do GP in public, not in my back yard. I'm not sure I'd distinguish between adequate shows/judges in my area and, say, sending the horse to Florida.... unless there was a real reason (selling the horse, promoting his parents, wanting to give a great trainer a very lucky break, showing off American bred and trained horses).

    You can't spend money you don't have or spend it on things you don't value-- fancy shows or a trainer with whom you don't have a great relationship. But things change, too. If you try to do what you can, someone might offer you an amount of money for the horse that you never thought you'd see and can't turn down. Or you could do the right thing for the horse by taking him back and riding him yourself when he's done with his big career. He will enjoy being well-cared for his whole life.

    In short, HO-ing is a "one day at a time" thing. So long as you are doing what feels right to you at each turn, I think you can be proud of what you have done.

    As I have gotten older, I have looked for opportunities to help good young trainers grow their business. Sometimes supplying the horse is the easiest and cheapest way to do that. You don't have to want to take up this agenda, OP, but if you have the horse that lets you do that, ask yourself if you'd like to. Most people don't get the opportunity that you have.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat


    1 members found this post helpful.

  11. #91
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    Jan. 30, 2010
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    You know, this could be really simple to resolve.

    "Trainer, can we discuss the plans for this year for horsey"

    "Sure"

    "I have seen the show schedule, and I would like to work out a budget with you so you can prioritise what shows to go to."

    "OK"

    "I have $xxx budget for shows for this year, and $yyyy budgeted for board and training"

    "Sounds reasonable, but the CDIs are going to eat up that budget quickly. If I can come up with the additional funds myself or through sponsors, are you ok with him showing beyond your budget? We will need to discuss prize money splits if I pay the entry fee"

    "Glad we talked about this and I am sure we can work something out!"

    See...easy.
    Freeing worms from cans everywhere!


    6 members found this post helpful.

  12. #92
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    Aug. 25, 2005
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    If one is to move up seriously at GP, the judges, and the competition at the local shows , are not what is needed. Yes, they are USDF shows, but the level of judges goes up at the bigger, national, and international competitions.

    The other level that goes up is the cost. There is special stabling, and separate oversight of all aspects of the show. Etc.,etc, etc.
    Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.



  13. #93
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    Feb. 1, 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by halteralter View Post
    kyzteke, yes, currently I am getting all cash awards they have won, as the awards get paid out to the owner...
    Isn't this your "kickback"?!?! You get to keep as cash and awards the trainer is winning with your horse.
    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


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  14. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by alibi_18 View Post
    Yes and no as I think both the owner and the rider weren't expecting such result in first place and then, the owner haven't yet expressed any kind of disagreement or exposed the real financial situation to the rider regarding this new goal of CDI small tour and big tour! They both probably got a bit blinded by the day to day improvement of the horse's habilities and now, that's where they are.

    They need to plan the futur of this business relationship.
    I agree in that I don't think it was a pre-meditated, intentional push from the trainer - in all likelihood, trainer probably came to owner one day and said Owner, this horse has WOW potential, I bet he'd do really well at some shows! and it progressed from there, with the OP probably saying Oh, OK, sure let's see how he does. At some point, the OP stopped driving the bus and Trainer took over, probably thinking that the OP was perfectly happy with the arrangement since it doesn't sound like there have been any objections.

    It's time to create a plan that is in line with the OP's goals, whatever they are, and get the trainer on board to work towards that (which may not necessarily align with her own). It sounds like the OP is willing to let the trainer go the CDI route if the trainer can fund at least part of the trip, which is *quite* generous.
    What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what
    lies with in us. - Emerson


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  15. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by merrygoround View Post
    If one is to move up seriously at GP, the judges, and the competition at the local shows , are not what is needed. Yes, they are USDF shows, but the level of judges goes up at the bigger, national, and international competitions.

    The other level that goes up is the cost. There is special stabling, and separate oversight of all aspects of the show. Etc.,etc, etc.
    Exactly. In addition, the judges' sheets and the contacts made gives the trainer access to broader and perhaps more-educated input. That's one reason I'd want a GP horse who did go to shows, not just do the movements at home.

    I know that doesn't change the size of the OP's bank account. just owning a horse that can do this work and having a trainer who would like to doesn't necessarily obligate the OP to get on that bandwagon.

    But if you are going to do it, do it right.... as best you can. That's how I roll.

    Good luck OP. I hope that whatever you do, you enjoy this chapter of your horse-owning life.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat



  16. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by halteralter View Post
    While I don't think the trainer is "doing me a favor", to further clarify my standpoint, I am fine with footing the bill for the local/regional shows. It is good experience for my horse. I am not OK with footing all of the bills for the horse to compete on the small tour...then eventually the large tour. I am ok at that point saying no, although it would be difficult because the trainer is so in love with the horse and the idea of riding him to the"top". I'm not great at dashing dreams, but again, like I've said...there is such a thing as being realistic when I'm not a multi-millionaire.

    I think then, you simply say "I can't afford CDIs." Period, end of story. Let the trainer come to you with other ideas. Or "I can't afford CDIs on top of everything else, but if you can figure out a way to gain sponsorship or support elsewhere to pay your entries I would be willing to allow you to show my horse in them."

    I think meupatdoes was perfectly reasonable, but that you don't want to be 100% honest with yourself about it. I think most of the people on this board, if we weren't able to ride but had a horse who had team horse or at least CDI winner potential would WANT to be able to get that horse out showing for the pride it would give us. So if that's what you feel, too, that's ok! That's normal! However, you do not owe it to the trainer to pay for CDIs, as this is well beyond what you and your budget bargained for. On the flip side, the trainer has done her job wonderfully from all you have told us, and owes you nothing. What you do owe her now, before she pays any extra expensive fees out of her own pocket for her own eligibility, is an honest discussion about where your budget will and won't go. If you admit to yourself that you like the idea of seeing your horse out there, and admit that to your trainer while saying you can't afford it, perhaps it will allow an entry into a discussion of how that can happen.
    My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.

    Quote Originally Posted by katarine
    If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed


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  17. #97
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    Mar. 16, 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by SuckerForHorses View Post
    Isn't this your "kickback"?!?! You get to keep as cash and awards the trainer is winning with your horse.
    There aren't very many shows with cash awards unless you start scouting for them (e.g. regionals, some large local shows, national shows). In the case of regionals, you don't get nearly as much back as you put in. There's not nearly as much prize money in dressage as there is in H/J.

    I don't think you can legitimately ask for much from your trainer with regards to sponsorships, as she/he is serving as a spokesperson and representative of their products, which is a service beyond riding your horse.

    You can (and should) re-frame the showing conversation, however, to provide some boundary conditions for the showing season.

    Congrats on your horse! Sounds like you found a good one.



  18. #98
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    Jun. 20, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by halteralter View Post
    While I don't think the trainer is "doing me a favor", to further clarify my standpoint, I am fine with footing the bill for the local/regional shows. It is good experience for my horse. I am not OK with footing all of the bills for the horse to compete on the small tour...then eventually the large tour. I am ok at that point saying no, although it would be difficult because the trainer is so in love with the horse and the idea of riding him to the"top". I'm not great at dashing dreams, but again, like I've said...there is such a thing as being realistic when I'm not a multi-millionaire.
    The impression I am getting from the information you have provided is that the trainer has been clear with her hopes/plans for the future, and you have not.

    Quote Originally Posted by CHT View Post
    You know, this could be really simple to resolve.

    "Trainer, can we discuss the plans for this year for horsey"

    "Sure"

    "I have seen the show schedule, and I would like to work out a budget with you so you can prioritise what shows to go to."

    "OK"

    "I have $xxx budget for shows for this year, and $yyyy budgeted for board and training"

    "Sounds reasonable, but the CDIs are going to eat up that budget quickly. If I can come up with the additional funds myself or through sponsors, are you ok with him showing beyond your budget? We will need to discuss prize money splits if I pay the entry fee"

    "Glad we talked about this and I am sure we can work something out!"

    See...easy.
    Yes.

    Quote Originally Posted by netg View Post
    I think then, you simply say "I can't afford CDIs." Period, end of story. Let the trainer come to you with other ideas. Or "I can't afford CDIs on top of everything else, but if you can figure out a way to gain sponsorship or support elsewhere to pay your entries I would be willing to allow you to show my horse in them."

    I think meupatdoes was perfectly reasonable, but that you don't want to be 100% honest with yourself about it.... What you do owe her now, before she pays any extra expensive fees out of her own pocket for her own eligibility, is an honest discussion about where your budget will and won't go. If you admit to yourself that you like the idea of seeing your horse out there, and admit that to your trainer while saying you can't afford it, perhaps it will allow an entry into a discussion of how that can happen.
    OP I get the idea that you have been uncomfortable with the situation for some time, but you have not addressed it. Now it has gone 'too far,' and it is only more difficult to do so now. But I really don't think you have much reason to blame the trainer. The picture I am getting from your posts is that she has been clear about her thoughts on a future for the horse, and you have not.


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  19. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Isabeau Z Solace View Post
    OP I get the idea that you have been uncomfortable with the situation for some time, but you have not addressed it.
    Yes.


    Now it has gone 'too far,' and it is only more difficult to do so now.
    Not really.


    But I really don't think you have much reason to blame the trainer. The picture I am getting from your posts is that she has been clear about her thoughts on a future for the horse, and you have not.
    The OP is NOT blaming the trainer. She is looking for solutions and how to talk about it to the trainer.


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  20. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by halteralter View Post
    I have a talented FEI level horse in full training with a trainer. He has been in full training with her for over 2 years, and she has brought the horse from 2nd/3rd. Although this trainer is very good, she has no other upper level horses of this caliber. She has already obtained a couple of sponsors directly because of (the training she put on) my horse and (the training she worked on that resulted in) his show record.

    My question is, as the sponsorships continue to come in, as I suspect that may, should I as an owner start to expect any "kickbacks"? By kickbacks I mean a reduction in show expenses (such as mileage, trainer expenses, etc) or maybe even a reduction in the training board price. If not now, then when? Ever?? Right now I pay 100% of all of the expenses (per our contract.)

    My boyfriend feels that I should be starting to get some kickbacks because (the work the trainer puts into) this horse is basically making her career, and feels the trainer is "lucky" I am keeping my horse with her. I'm a little uncomfortable broaching this subject with the trainer, as I feel grateful that the horse has done so well under her training. However, money will become a real issue as the horse starts competing in CDIs...the first one less than 2 months away.

    Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
    Quote Originally Posted by alibi_18 View Post
    The OP is NOT blaming the trainer. She is looking for solutions and how to talk about it to the trainer.
    I think the first post makes it pretty clear that the boyfriend and owner feel the HORSE deserves most of the credit for the training success. Not the trainer.

    The obvious answer to these problems is that the free loading equine needs to pony up (no pun intended.......) his fair share for this deal.


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