Dubawi takes over the top spot: let battle commence

Dubawi star: Too Darned Hot is as short as 5/1 favourite for both the 2000 Guineas and the Derby after this four-length success under Frankie Dettori in Sandown’s G3 Solario Stakes last Saturday. Photo: Mark Cranham/focusonracing.com

Galileo’s run as the world’s #1 sire has come to an end after 16 months at the top of the TRC Global Rankings.

The Coolmore great drew a blank in Group and Graded action last week while long-time #2 Dubawi was responsible for two G3 winners - Ball Of Muscle at Caulfield in Australia and new 2000 Guineas and Epsom Derby favourite Too Darned Hot at Sandown in England. After the dust has settled, it means the Darley flagbearer is now a single point ahead.

It is the first time Galileo has not held the top spot since April 2017, when he was briefly overtaken by Deep Impact, but it is hardly surprising.

Indeed this may be merely the opening salvo in a battle that is likely to see-saw for the rest of the year. As we explained here last week, Dubawi has been closing remorselessly through 2018, and he certainly has plenty of quality ammunition for the big contests to come during the remainder of the year.

A Galileo fightback is probable, however. It may have been an unexceptional campaign for him in Europe so far by his Everest-high standards, but the signs are that Aidan O’Brien’s Galileo-laden stable is beginning to shake off the effects of the virus that has so restricted its success over the past three months (O’Brien saddled seven winners at the Curragh on Friday and Saturday). And it’s a safe bet that not only will there be a degree of rejuvenation from some of his established stars, but that there are some as yet unheralded Galileo 2-year-olds waiting in the wings.

If the TRC rankings were based on a calendar year, rather than a rolling three-year period, Dubawi would be out on his own, as the table here - leading sires on TRC ranking points for 2018 only - shows.

In fact, Dubawi leads the world by some margin in most performance-driven indicators.

When his runners and Galileo’s have run in the same races so far this year, Dubawi leads Galileo 37/25. He is also ahead of every other leading sire apart from Kitten’s Joy (4/5) and Snitzel (2/11 - but bear in mind that those encounters have been in Snitzel’s back yard down under).

He leads Galileo 26/25 in Group/Graded wins with a 21 percent strike rate (26/123) against a 16 percent strike rate for the Coolmore stallion (25/158). They have four G1s apiece.

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