Dubious came, saw and conquered at Randwick on Saturday when he powered home late to win the $160,000 ATC Arrowfield Breeders’ Plate 1000m G3 in race record time of 56.45 seconds.
He also became Not A Single Doubt’s 21st 2YO stakeswinner & 59th lifetime stakeswinner, and the first Victorian-trained winner of the race, one of the season’s first two stakes races for 2YOs on the Australian calendar.
It was a performance succinctly described on Twitter by one observer, Anthony Jones @racingtheclock2: “Trained Melbourne way – only horse to come from out of town – re-shod at the barrier – wide and without cover – finished with an enormous will to win – race record – WOW.”
Trainers Ciaron Maher & David Eustace had identified Aquis Farm’s compact colt as the stable’s most precocious colt and sent him to Sydney for a professional trial win on 17 September. Dubious progressed exactly as hoped, before taking his place alongside several other trial winners and placegetters in the field for the Breeders’ Plate.
He began smartly from gate 10 but was left in no-man’s land while Covert Ops drove forward and took up the running. At the 300-metre mark Covert Ops was not stopping and Dubious got down to serious work, responding with an impressive turn of foot to close the gap and secure victory in the last couple of strides.
Bred by Anthony Roberts’ Chesapeake Thoroughbreds & Brian Toohey’s Winton Bloodstock, Dubious was bought for $350,000 by Aquis Farms & Ciaron Maher at this year’s Magic Millions Gold Coast Sale. He is the first foal of the stakes-placed French-bred mare Suspicieuse (by Elusive City), a half-sister to G3 winner Sediciosa, from the family of Japanese sire Neo Universe. Suspicieuse was a €55,000 purchase by agent Sheamus Mills from the 2013 Arqana Breeding Stock Sale.
Breeders’ Plate history offers plenty of encouragement that Dubious will play a leading role as the season unfolds, and perhaps beyond his racing career. Winners since 2000 include outstanding juveniles Capitalist, Vancouver, Pierro & Sebring, Champion Sire Snitzel, leading sire Choisir and Group 1 sire Charge Forward.