Race watchers on Wednesday would no doubt agree that High Chaparral has his next star in the making after watching the performance of exciting colt Dundeel (3c High Chaparral x Stareel, by Zabeel).
The Murray Baker trained colt showed real potential when scoring an easy debut win at Ellerslie back in April over 1200 metres and was immediately sent to the paddock with a spring campaign in mind.
Produced at the ATC metropolitan meeting at Wyong on Wednesday in a very competitive restricted event for three year-olds over 1350 metres, Dundeel maintained his unbeaten record when surging home from the back of the field to nail talented filly Kristy Lee by a short neck.
Murray Baker’s Sydney based son Bjorn Baker was representing the stable and was hard pressed to hide his enthusiasm.
“He’s a very nice horse and only arrived here two weeks ago. I was very tempted to do the stable return in my name !” quipped Baker, who trains in his own right at Warwick Farm.
“He had everything against him today. He carried 58 [kg], Wyong was never going to suit him, it was too short, fresh up, but the good horses seem to come from nowhere and they surprise you.
“Lion Tamer (who won the VRC Derby in in 2010) did that a couple of years ago and hopefully this bloke can follow the same path.”
Winning rider James McDonald has been aboard Dundeel at each of his wins and will be keen to stick with the rising star this spring.
“He came around the bend on the wrong leg and did a few other things wrong,” he said.
“Imagine the improvement he’s going to take from racing.”
Not offered at auction and raced by the Transtasman Syndicate, Dundeel is a half-brother to stakes-placed Twoeezy and is one of five winners from Zabeel mare Stareel, who is a daughter of Group I New Zealand Oaks winner Staring.
Dundeel is very true to the High Chaparral type and looks a great candidate to continue his sire’s great record with three year-olds following on from a season where he had none in the Southern Hemisphere as a result of the EI outbreak in 2007.
High Chaparral stands at Coolmore this spring at a fee of $77,000.