Melbourne Cup hero Dunaden dies aged 13

Son of Nicobar landed the 2011 Melbourne Cup for Sheikh Fahad Al Thani's Pearl Bloodstock

Dunaden winning the Group 1 Melbourne Cup in 2011 – Photo: Bronwen Healy

Melbourne Cup hero Dunaden, who carried Sheikh Fahad Al Thani’s Pearl Bloodstock colours to victory in ‘the race that stops a nation’ in 2011, has died aged 13 after complications following a paddock accident at Overbury Stud.

Purchased privately as a four-year-old by David Redvers on behalf of Pearl Bloodstock in 2010, the son of Nicobar went on to land the Hong Kong Vase, the Melbourne Cup and the Caulfield Cup on his return to Australia in 2012.

His career encompassed seven seasons, running a total of 46 times, winning ten races and being placed on a further 19 occasions. Initially trained by Richard Gibson, Dunaden’s career was latterly handled by Mikel Delzangles.

Retired from racing to stand at Overbury Stud in Gloucestershire in 2015, Dunaden’s oldest crop are three-year-olds in 2019.

David Redvers, Racing Manager to Sheikh Fahad, said: “Dunaden was a horse of iron constitution with the most exceptional will to win. He gave Sheikh Fahad some fantastic days and was largely responsible for the wider Qatari family becoming involved in horseracing.

“He was the most intelligent thoroughbred I have ever been involved with and we are all incredibly saddened by his death.

“I would like to thank Simon Sweeting and his team at Overbury Stud for the job they have done with the horse, particularly over the last few days.”

Sheikh Fahad added: “Dunaden was a horse of a lifetime. Winning the Melbourne Cup is a day I will never forget. He was pure class – consistent, strong and incredibly competitive.

“QIPCO’s initial investment in racing is largely down to Dunaden’s success. It is a terrible loss.”

Simon Sweeting, Overbury Stud Manager, said: “It was a huge honour to have stood Dunaden at Overbury Stud. I was delighted to have been involved with him and am very sad to have lost him so early.”

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