Superb start by Dubawi in Europe

Darley sire Dubawi is taking the European first-season sires’ premiership by storm.

Dubawi shot to the top of the ladder for individual winners last week and sired his first stakes winner on Friday when Sand Vixen won the Listed St Hugh’s Stakes at Newbury.

Sand Vixen (2f Dubawi – Fur Will Fly by Petong) won her maiden second time out at Kempton and followed up with a G3 placing in the Princess Margaret Stakes at Royal Ascot before breaking through at black-type level.

Frankie Dettori always had Sand Vixen in touch at Newbury and they defeated the Exceed And Excel fillies Shamandar and Above Limits in a close finish.  She holds entries for the G2 Mill Reef Stakes and G1 Meon Valley Stud Fillies’ Mile in September and the G1 Cheveley Park Stakes in October.

“I like the filly a lot,” trainer Saeed bin Suroor said.  “She is the best of our juvenile fillies and Frankie said she deserves a shot at a race like the Cheveley Park.”

Dubawi was a G1 winner of the Irish National Stakes at two and defeated Oratorio in the G1 Irish 2000 Guineas the following year.  Although more at home at a mile, he ran an admirable third behind Motivator in the English Derby before dropping back in distance to win the G1 Prix Jacques Le Marois at Deauville.

He bowed out after finishing second to Starcraft in a thrilling renewal of the G1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes at Newmarket in 2005.

Dubawi is from the only crop by Sheikh Mohammed’s superstar Dubai Millenium and since retiring has alternated between Kildangan Stud in Ireland and Dalham Hall Stud in Newmarket.

British bookmakers installed Dubawi on third line of betting at 6-1 for the leading first-season sire (winners) this year behind Shamardal (7-4) and Oratorio (3-1).

His first winner arrived in May when Dubai Story was successful at Marseille.  The 2008 Arqana August Sale graduate is out of the 2002 German 1000 Guineas winner Portella.

His tally has since grown to 15 and top of the totem-pole is Godolphin colt Poet’s Voice who was a very impressive 10 length winner at Newmarket last month.

Iron Velvet became Dubawi’s latest winner when he powered home to take an evening nursery at Catterick shortly after Sand Vixen scored at Newbury.  Raced by Sheikh Hamdan, he is out of an unraced half-sister to G1 Kentucky Oaks winner Pike Place Dancer.

Dubawi shuttled to Darley Australia for the first time in 2006 and 36 lots from his initial southern crop averaged $56,900 earlier this year.  That figure may have been artificially inflated because, of his 13 passed-in lots, only three had reserves above the overall average.

The top-priced Dubawi was the $450,000 half-brother Takeover Target and Predatory Price.  He was purchased by Paul Murray from the Segenhoe draft at the Inglis Australian yearling sale.