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Unusual Suspect Aimed At Dubai Carnival
Part-owner Peter Lord confirmed trainer Mick Kent has US-bred 7YO entire Unusual Suspect (Unusual Heat-Penpont, by Crested Wave) back in work (following his 9th in the Gr1 Melbourne Cup at Flemington on November 1) in preparation for a trip to the Dubai International Carnival in February & March, reported The Illawarra Mercury. Lord said Unusual Suspect had only 2 weeks in the paddock after the Melbourne Cup, his 4th start since arriving in Australia from the US; he also finished 4th in the Gr2 Dato Tan Nim Chan Stakes at Moonee Valley & 6th in the Gr1 Caulfield Cup. Lord enthused: "We were always keen to look at Dubai. He went up another point in the world ratings to 112 & it was always in the back of our minds that we would like to send him there for the carnival." Lord noted there are "a number of options" for Unusual Suspect in Dubai, including Gr2 & Gr3 races over 2400m & 2800m leading up to his goal of a start in the Gr1 Dubai Sheema Classic (2400m) on Dubai World Cup night in March. Lord also confirmed the 2012 Melbourne Cup would be "an obvious target" for Unusual Suspect next season, adding: "We'll bring him back to Australia & see if we can follow the same program as this year." Previously in America Unusual Suspect won last year's US Gr1 Hollywood Turf Cup (12 furlongs on turf) & has won or placed in US stakes company on 19 occasions (for over US$1 million earnings), with other victories including the Gr3 Hollywood Turf Express Handicap (6 furlongs), Listed Cougar II Handicap (12 furlongs), Listed California Cup Mile Handicap (8 furlongs) & Listed Bay Meadows Derby (8.5 furlongs) plus stakes-placings including the Gr2 San Juan Capistrano Handicap (14 furlongs), Gr2 San Luis Obispo Handicap (12 furlongs), Gr3 Sunset Breeders' Cup Handicap (12 furlongs), Gr3 Generous Stakes (8 furlongs), Listed California Cup Classic Handicap (9 furlongs), Listed Windy Sands Stakes (8 furlongs), Listed Cougar II Handicap (12 furlongs), Listed Sunshine Millions Turf Stakes (9 furlongs), Listed Oceanside Stakes (8 furlongs) & Listed Real Quiet Stakes (8.5 furlongs).