08/22/2005 12:00AM

DNA tests confirm horse is not Dubai Excellence


The mystery of Dubai Excellence took on Sherlock Holmesian proportions this weekend when DNA tests proved that the horse exported from England by Sheikh Mohammed's Darley Stud to stand in Australia at Evergreen Stud in Perth is definitely not the purported half brother to Dubai Millennium.

With the purchase of Dubai Excellence for $300,000, Australiian breeder Ted van Heemst thought he was buying into the bloodlines of the great, ill-fated Dubai Millennium.

Doubts begain to circulate shortly after 'Dubai Excellence' arrived at the Western Australia stud farm this summer. Dubai Excellence is supposed to be 15.3 hands high, but the horse received at Evergreen was shorter than that. Neither did he show any signs of the tendon damage that had forced Dubai Excellence's retirement after a single race, that a 7-furlong maiden win at Chepstow in Wales on Sept. 13, 2001. The real Dubai Excellence was also supposed to have a microchip imbedded in his leg for identification purposes, but the horse in question was fitted with no such apparatus.

The DNA results suggest that the horse at Evergreen could well be by Dubai Excellence's sire Highest Honor, but that Colorado Dancer, the dam of Dubai Excellence, could not possibly be the dam of the mystery horse.

The real Dubai Excellence remained at England after his retirement in 2001, but has no registered foals to date. He had been booked to cover 80 mares at Evergreen Stud beginning Sept. 1. Only one thing about the case is certain. That is that somewhere between Newmarket and Perth, Dubai Excellence disappeared and was replaced by the horse now "standing" at Evergreen Stud in Australia.