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Confusion over missing stallion mounts -

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(generated from captions) Natasha Johnson with that report. work cut out for him He's worth $500,000 and did have his till the end of the year servicing 80 mares.

In his place is another similar

the looking horse. The strange tale of looking horse. The strange tale of

ring-in has embarrass add chain of looking horse. The strange tale

authorities from Newmarket in

Britain to Sydney and Western

Australia. Apparently no-one in

chain realised that the wrong horse Australia. Apparently no-one in that

was being imported in place of

Excellence. The mystery has raised was being imported in place of Dubai

questions about the Australian

quarantine inspection service's

reliance on paper audits and it has

left a Perth horse owner wondering

just where in the world the real

horse is. has Western Australia seen ADVERTISEMENT: Rarely, if ever, to match that of Dubai Excellence. a stallion with a pedigree For owner Ted van Eemst, to buy him, who forked out near on $500,000 breeding world gets to a sure thing. Dubai Excellence was as close as the A prize stallion Godolphin racing stable - from the international one of the world's best. the greatest racehorse A half-brother to arguably in modern times - the world has seen Dubai Millenium. with a full dance card of 80 mares. Dubai Excellence was coming to town

his stallion's services Ted van Eemst was going to charge at $4,000 a pop. That's his race start. he was a two-year-old? So this is when This is when he's a two-year-old. he really had He demonstrated what a potential

by 3.5 lengths on a wet track in winning his maiden start in an excellent time.

A tendon injury in training three years ago ended the young stallion's racing career. So Godolphin marketed Dubai Excellence as a stud from a good family and Ted van Eemst, the chairman of Perth Racing, was the willing buyer. People around the world were extremely surprised that the horse was heading south to Australia, so the reaction to the horse has been very good. By March this year, the picturesque Evergreen Lodge, south of Perth, had become the new home for the horse known as Dubai Excellence. And to all those involved in his export, from the Godolphin Darley Stable in Newmarket to the agistment centre in Suffolk where he'd been sold, to the British Quarantine and then on to Customs and Quarantine in Sydney, he certainly looked like the horse in the passport. He was slightly larger than we'd been led to believe and there was no evidence of any tendon injury. Back in 1999, Dubai Excellence was among the first round of British yearlings to be injected with a microchip, and when scanned, the chip would beep. DEVICE BEEPS

There's a band of muscle that runs along there. At Evergreen Lodge on March 16 this year, stud manager Wendy Liddelow called in a vet to carry out routine health and identity checks on Dubai Excellence. But the horse in her stable gave no beep. Wasn't that enough to ring major alarm bells at the time? Not really because he would have been in one of the very first crops to be microchipped

and there was still some concern with those early microchips

that they could migrate throughout the body. So Wendy Liddelow and the vet scanned the entire body of the horse. Still no beep. Were you informed in March that there were suspicions it was the wrong horse?

No. Last week was the first notification that we had that there was a possible irregularity. Following routine, the vet also collected hair samples to be sent off for DNA profiling at the Equine Genetic Centre at the University of Queensland. But Dr Ann Trezise had to wait months

for a Dubai Excellence blood sample and DNA profile to arrive from England for comparison. In this case we found that the DNA types that we had were different to the registered types. But for a scientist like Dr Ann Trezise this wasn't enough - she needed to check again. The first test - we got the final results from those only a couple of weeks ago and we contacted the studbook to be sent over. to ask for additional samples were being tested, Only now, as new samples the first suspicions, six months after Register of Thoroughbreds did the keeper of the National Michael Ford inform the owner. My position, in terms of protocol, been taken, tested and confirmed. is to wait until those samples have the owner, back in March, Shouldn't somebody have told you,

a microchip? that this horse didn't even have That would have been helpful. the definitive DNA results came in. And on Friday, he is, is not Dubai Excellence. This horse, fine-looking though So who is he? is in Australia. We don't know what the horse We have the DNA type of it now of registered DNA types but there are hundreds of thousands for horses all over the world. Australian horses are branded, Unlike British thoroughbreds,

occur with an Australian horse. so it's unlikely such a mix-up would It's quite obvious with the responsibility of checking that the authorities who were vested have not done any checking. And if they have done checking, that makes it even worse. well, goodness me, Service demands on its own forms The Australian Quarantine Inspection an imported horse is microchipped. that owners declare whether told the 7.30 Report Yet a spokesman for AQIS for a microchip. that AQIS vets never actually scan they have the training to do it They have the capacity to do it, that it's outside the procedures but the problem they have is and they're not allowed to do it. did health-check the ring-in While AQIS says a vet when he arrived in Australia. they're forced to rely on The vets' union says which accompanied the horse. the paperwork it would seem extraordinary Well, to any outsider but when you look at the procedures to follow inside AQIS, that our members are required could happen on a daily basis. you can see that this sort of thing Peter McGauran, The Federal Agriculture Minister, is responsible for AQIS. It's not a question of identity - bureau. this isn't the missing person's the animal's health. It's a question of was being sent here It wouldn't matter if the horse or to come to win a Melbourne Cup, to be sent to a knackery the same health inspection. it would go through

the real Dubai Excellence So now the search for mystery horse X and the owner of has turned to England and Europe. suspects Studbook keeper Michael Ford inadvertently swapped the two horses were at an agistment centre in Suffolk. I guess at the time in the same paddock, there must have been two horses for one of them to go to Europe, and when it came time the wrong one probably went. I believe it's an honest mistake. TED VAN EEMST: There's no value really the wrong stallion in deliberating substituting breeding knows because anyone involved in in the end. that DNA will catch you out Owner Ted van Eemst, on $300,000 worth of stud fees, who's lost his horse and missed out says he'll be seeking compensation. some redress Obviously we will be seeking in terms of our loss of income associated in promoting this horse and all the costs that are that has been incurred. and the inconvenience As for the mystery horse, it might have been. he can only dream of the season That's the program for tonight.

I guess the Australian breeding