Newgate Farm shuttler The Factor (USA) has opened his account in Australia with a stylish last-to-first win by promising youngster The Unknown Factor in Canberra.
Trained on the track by Gratz Vella for owner-breeder Glenis Trevaskis, he was well fancied on debut in a 1000m juvenile maiden on Friday.
A tardy getaway saw the grey gelding settle at the tail of the field for Richard Bensley. When a split opened along the rails turning for home, The Unknown Factor accelerated smartly up the fence to win by a length and a half.
“He’s always shaped up as though he could do it,” said Vella. “He looks a real sprinter and we have a full sister to him at home.”
Vella won the 2011 Canberra Black Opal Stakes with You’re Canny and will look to repeat that success with The Unknown Factor on March 11. His dam Mixed Up Miss, a Forest Glow mare who won 8 races for the same connections, is related to Group 1 winners Mr Celebrity, Prince Salieri and Kiss Me Cait.
The Factor has two northern crops racing and is the sire of 8 stakes-winners in North America highlighted by Group 1 winner Noted and Quoted (Santa Anita Chandelier Stakes).
A son of War Front (Danzig), he was trained by Bob Baffert for Group 1 victories in the Malibu Stakes (1400m) and Pat O’Brien Stakes (1400m). The Factor shuttles from Lane’s End Farm for a $11,000 (inc gst) fee at Newgate in the Hunter Valley.