Vlad to toast Champagne

Vlad to toast Champagne

Larry Foley, Singapore – As Kranji heads for its penultimate meeting of Singapore’s 2019 season on Friday, and while we don’t often focus on the lower grade races, there is a interesting and relatively strong Class 5 1600m race to open the card.

Indeed, Champagne Finale looks very well placed to win on the Polytrack and add one more to the Vlad Duric 2019 Championship tally.

This four-year-old took a while to find his feet as a racehorse before placing at start five and breaking his maiden status at his next start over 1600m on the Polytrack.

Some competitive runs in Class 4 suggest he will could win in that company with more experience under his belt, but a drop to the bottom grade looks ideal at his twelfth career start and he should be hard to beat with a forward run expected.

The best race class-wise on the card in Race 5, also over the Polytrack 1600m and while only eight horses head to the start, it is a good Class 3 field with at least four with strong winning hopes.

Karisto, Magic Wand and Letitgo all look suited and will figure in what could be a busy finish. However, Caribbean Lady looks a very smart horse on the Polytrack and will appreciate being back on the all-weather track and can continue her excellent run of form with a win.

BEST BETS:  Champagne Finale, Race 1, Win; Caribbean Lady Race 5, Win; and Siam Warrior, Race 3, Win.

JACKPOT: Race 6: 1, 2, 5 and 8; Race 7: 1, 2, 3, 5 and 7; Race 8: 1, 3, 4, 9 and 10; and Race 9: 3, 4, 6, 7 and 10.


Race cards and Larry Foley’s synopsis follow. For updates on all runners go to www.kranjiracing.com


Race 1


Usually a Class 5 over two bends will send shivers down the spine of even the most ardent punter but this one looks OK with CHAMPAGNE FINALE a big winning show. The 4YO has only one once from some 11 race starts but some efforts in Class 4 suggests he can win again dropping to this company with a very forward run expected from gate 3 with Duric up. Nothing jumps off the page to beat him, although HERO IN THE WIND is in very honest form, the Poly mile suits and S John will give him every chance from gate 1. There are two last start winners in the race – TSURIAN and WHIZZY WALTZZY – and while both have to be respected, TSURIAN has the more honest form on the board so looks the pick. Of the rest, FLYING YELLOW can disappoint but looked well held at a recent trial so is worth thought at odds and LITTLE MASTER gets M Rodd, which can’t hurt. Betting Strategy – CHAMPAGNE FINALE win.

1 CHAMPAGNE FINALE *** Significant drop in Class, will go forward and hard to pass with Duric a factor. 

2 TSURIAN *** Last start (and only other win) was over 1400m on turf but in form and pay to respect. 

3 WHIZZY WALTZZY ** Surprised most when winning last start. Keep safe as has handled the Poly previously. 

4 HERO IN THE WIND *** A long way from the winner last start but was due prior, gate 1 helps and Poly mile suits. 

5 FLYING YELLOW ** Drawn badly again after doing it tough from wide gate last start and some hope on cheeky effort two back with recent good trial under his belt.

6 LITTLE MASTER ** Yet to win on the Poly but in solid form and can figure. 

7 ELENA OF AVALOR ** Only win was over 1200m but on form and could consider sans blinkers with luck from wide gate. 

8 KEEP WINNING ** Lame last start and placed start prior over 1700m so worth another look. 

9 PACIFIC MYSTICAL ** Nothing last start but OK two back and could add value to skinny end of exotics. 

10 SILVER JOY ** Form reads badly but drops back to winning Class to watch the market. 

11 SUN SPEAR * Appreciates better gate but needs to improve. 


13 CAI POH WANG * OK on his day but prefer others on recent form. 


Race 2


A very weak maiden and SIMBA might be the best option after placing with heavy support at his Singapore debut. That was after showing little at seven starts in NZ before arriving but his local trials are very good and he doesn’t have to improve much to win this. HAPPY LUCKY STAR and NINETEEN STAR were both a long way off Supermax over 1000m last start but given both improve for the run and the lack of depth in this field, they should figure. ROCKET WINNER hung out badly when running on well late last start and he gets blinkers so has to be considered, while GAMELY is a money pit but he too gets blinkers added and this race may be weak enough to break through. FROM THE NAVY the only other horse to consider after doing it tough last start. Betting Strategy- SIMBA small win.

1 SIMBA *** In the winning mix at Singapore debut with heavy support and has trialled well since, Can win with winkers off. 

2 HAPPY LUCKY STAR *** A long way from the winner when runner-up resuming but appreciates the run and goes close. 

3 GAMELY *** A serious non-winner who gets blinkers after a rare unplaced run. Take on trust. 

4 MAJESTIC * Blinkers off and back in trip so easier to ignore. 

5 ANPANMAN * Didn’t need wide gate. 

6 MONT CHOISY * Placed two starts back but battles away as a rule and wide gate will test. 

7 WINNING MONSTER * Gets blinkers added after poor debut and would need support before considering. 

8 NINETEEN STAR *** A long way from the winner when placing on debut but improves for the run and should figure. 

9 FIGHT MY WAY * Showed nothing on debut. 

10 FROM THE NAVY ** Form reads only fair from two career runs but did it tough enough last start to think the effort was OK and could surprise from better gate.

11 ROCKET WINNER *** Did plenty wrong when running on to place last start and gets blinkers added. Some hope if more tractable in running. 

12 ULURU * Battled at debut and prefer to just watch. 

13 APOLLO ROCK * Not for me. 

14 CIZEN LUCKY * Impossible on exposed form. 


Race 3


While there are two last start winners in this field and both MIG PIERRO and PINDUS can win with support likely, there should be plenty of value about for horses that had no luck last start and happy to consider SIAM WARRIOR and TAX FREE at (hopefully) odds. SIAM WARRIOR in particular looked to have plenty in hand after running into traffic when it mattered over 1400m on the turf and he will be hard to hold out with M Rood up from gate 4. TAX FREE will also appreciate the better barrier (3) after doing it extremely tough last start and his effort to be in the mix till late suggests he is up to this. Plenty of others with winning hopes including IMPERIUM who will also appreciate jumping from an inside gate (1), while SILENT PARTNER drops in grade and he can win first up after a break. Betting Strategy – SIAM WARRIOR each-way.

1 SILENT PARTNER *** Resuming down in grade and can consider on the back of some good trials. 

2 MIG PIERRO *** Backed up good Singapore debut with a gutsy win in similar affair to this and worth following. 

3 IMPERIUM *** Has struggled from wide gates at last two starts so can consider on best form from gate 1. 

4 SIAM WARRIOR *** Excuses last start on turf over 1400m and looked to have plenty in hand late. Only win in Singapore on the Poly and hard to hold out here. 

5 ABSOLVIDO ** Disappointing last start but runs on strongly when in the mood so keep safe. 

6 I AM THE ONE ** Never fired a shot with good support last start but obviously some hope on best form. 

7 KA CHANCE ** Ran on solidly to place without being a threat last start and expect much the same. 

8 PINDUS *** Ridden quietly and ran on well late to break overdue maiden status last start. Penny may have dropped so follow. 

9 COPACABANA ** Might be a better winning option on the turf but honest enough to include in exotics. 

10 TAX FREE *** Did it very tough last start and effort to be in the winning mix till late was very good. Can win from gate 3. 

11 HERACROSS * Nothing last start and drawn badly so easier to ignore. 

12 CATCH THE TIGER * Resuming sans blinkers with solid trial under his belt but should need longer. 

13 ALLEGRO * Ran on super late to place last start over 1400m on turf but can disappoint so take on trust. 

14 TINGLE MARC * OK last start but needs easier.


Race 4


Given the only horse in this Class 5 field to run a place at their last start is a 16-start maiden in GOLD KINGDOM, it’s safe to say this is not a good punting race. But GOLD KINGDOM has placed six times (twice recently this trip and track) and he may not get a better chance than this with best work expected late. Who else can win? BOUNCEBACK ABILITY very much appreciates what was a very forward first-up run and he will figure prominently again from gate 3, while PEGASUS JUNIOR is in very solid form and he looks well placed in this field to figure late. SHE’S THE ONE had excuses last start and is always a chance in races like this and MONEY KING might surprise at value given best work late last start. SILENT BOSS, HOOGA NET at odds and YULONG HOLY FLYING just three more to consider. Betting Strategy – BOUNCEBACK ABILITY each-way.

1 MONEY KING *** Gate could test but trip suits and work late last start has him under notice. 

2 SILENT BOSS ** Form reads badly but ran on solidly last start and mile may suit from gate 2. 

3 BOUNCEBACK ABILITY *** Appreciates first up run over 1400m on turf and will give a sight from gate 3 on preferred surface. 

4 GOLD KINGDOM *** Long-term maiden status a concern but will be running on strongly and gets his chance in this field. 

5 PEGASUS JUNIOR *** Ran on well late last start over 1400m and better suited here with 2kg claim from gate 5. Can win. 

6 SHE’S THE ONE *** Will need luck from wide gate but excuses not to finish closer last start and wins this without surprising. 

7 STANDOUT * Gets blinkers but struggles as a rule. 

8 SUGARTIME JAZZ * Veteran who has lost form. 

9 HOOGA NET ** Impossible on form but was travelling OK when checked badly last start in straight so could consider at odds. 

10 KING WARRIOR * Battled away OK last start and gets winkers but easier to ignore. 

11 YULONG HOLY FLYING ** Blinkers off and has been thereabouts of late so can include in exotics at value from gate 1. 

12 CASSIS OOLONG * Up in trip and looks to be making up the numbers. 

13 LUCKY RED ** Not a mile away last start an depths field no tougher. 


Race 5


These small fields can be tricker than they look on paper with race tactics and tempo playing a big part on the day. And while four horses can win without surprising, as it stands CARIBBEAN LADY looks a very progressive type, loves the Poly and she might be hard to hold out from gate 2 with the underrated M Zaki up. KARISTO has yet to win in Singapore but is super honest, appreciates a very good first up run and wins without surprising, while LETITGO also appreciates his first-up run after a long break and this race suits. MAGIC WAND just missed with blinkers added last start over 1200m and this trip is no worries so he can also win, while FORESTO won last start in Class 4 and is always some show on the Poly. Betting Strategy – CARIBBEAN LADY win.

1 MAGIC WAND *** Just missed over 1200m last start when blinkers added and has form this trip and track so can win. 

2 LETITGO *** Very much appreciates first up run after long injury lay-off and win before break this trip and track. Goes close. 

3 MCGREGOR * Hard to consider on recent form but race should suit. 

4 KARISTO *** Yet to win in Singapore and having first race start on the poly but honest, appreciates very good first up run and can seriously consider. 

5 CARIBBEAN LADY *** Only battled on the turf last start but very much appreciates being back on the Poly. Goes close. 

6 FORESTO ** Took a drop to Class 4 to win but always some hope on the Poly. 

7 MIGHTY KENNY * Gate 1 helps but lost form. 

8 WONDERFUL PAINT * Impossible on race form but recent trial was OK. 


Race 6


This race looks a very tough one for punters with at least eight horses that win without surprising. Starting at the top, TARO SAN is in form and while drawn a tad awkwardly in gate 11, he can make his own luck and should figure premonitory throughout. DESPACITO was only fair last start but will get back and run on strongly, as will ROMANTIC who should be ridden quietly (again) after drawing wide. ALWAYS INNOCENT picks himself on winning form – including this company and trip last start – and ATLANTEAN is also is good form and showed last start that this Class is no problem. STREET PARTY (with best work expected late) and last start maiden winner, SATURDAY, just two more to consider and keep SIAM MP very safe given he is bred in the US and should appreciate the Poly. Betting Strategy – SIAM MP each-way.

1 TARO SAN *** Drawn wide but lost in a close on last start and can win with any luck in running. 

2 DESPACITO *** Solid home without being a threat last start but was due prior and wins if race run to suit swoopers. 

3 WALKING THUNDER * Lost all form. 

4 LEADING CELLIST ** Form reads badly but traffic excuses last start and some hope on best Poly form. 

5 SIAM MP *** Back in trip and having first start on the Poly but US breeding suggests this track should suit and can win on form prior. 

6 ALWAYS INNOCENT *** In cracking form and showed last start that 1200m and Class 5 is no problem. Pay to keep following. 

7 ROMANTIC *** Drawn wide but excuses for only poor run of late (jockey suspended) and will figure late. 

8 SATURDAY *** Won a weak maiden last start with support but won well enough to follow with gate 2 a bonus. 

9 CENTURION * Need longer than this. 

10 STREET PARTY *** Like to see over longer but ran on well last start to place and expect much the same. 

11 ATLANTEAN *** Backed up Class 5 Poly win with a close up finish on the turf this company. Can consider back on this surface. 

12 MR COPPOLA * Only battled at his last couple and wide gate makes this tough. 

13 BORN TO BE KING * Appreciates first up run and better gate but like to see something before considering. 

14 BLACK QUAIL * Like to see in Class 5 but has speed and could run a cheeky race. 


Race 7


A very top heavy (rated-wise) Class 5 Poly dash with Class droppers likely to come to the fore. WELL DESERVED is one that will appreciate Class 5 and he placed two back in Class 4 so can win with Vlad Duric a factor after drawing gate 12. TRIGAMY also drops in Class and while his form doesn’t read as well, it has been a rapid fall from grace so he could improve lengths with market best guide. STAR FIFTYTWO has changed stables (again) and while he is a maiden and did nothing last start, he will enjoy his first run in Class 5 and can win for his new trainer, Jason Lim. Jason also saddles up GOLDEN THUNDER and RAPID FIRE and they can both win on recent good form, while ASIA SPIRIT for Des Koh is also in the winning mix. Betting Strategy – STAR FIFTYTWO each-way.

1 GOLDEN THUNDER *** In solid form and will figure prominently from gate 2. 

2 RAPID FIRE *** Never a threat when placing in this company last start but gate 3 helps and will be thereabouts. 

3 WELL DESERVED *** Shown glimpses in Class 4 but very much appreciates having a crack at Class 5 company. Watch for support. 

4 WINNER NUMBER ONE ** Never a threat to winner last start but that was an improved effort in a similar affair to this so keep safe. 

5 ASIA SPIRIT *** Excuses (respiratory) for only poor run of late and should give a sight with 3kg claim. 

6 CIZEN BOSS ** Pulled up lame last start after breaking maiden start prior. Keep safe. 

7 STAR FIFTYTWO *** Maiden who has changed stables (again) but has shown glimpses and class 5 will suit with blinkers off. Watch market. 

8 TRIGAMY ** Form terrible but drops significantly in Class and gets blinkers. Market only guide. 

9 CASTLE QUEEN * Tongue-tie off after battling first-up run and prefer others. 

10 TURF BEAUTY * Surprised a few by placing on the Poly last start but still a better option on the turf. 

11 MAKE U FAMOUS ** Hard to fault form but had to pull out all stops to win last start and this looks tougher with widest gate an issue. 

12 WILD BEE ** Excuses last start worth thought in skinny end of exotics on best form. 

13 GRATUS * Struggling. 

14 ALARANCH ** Speedster who will find this tougher than recent starts but always some hope in Poly sprints. 


Race 8


A solid Class 4 with a recent arrival and some likely improvers lifting it above the mundane. The recent arrival is the Ricardo Le Grange-trained RESTRAINED who battled on solidly at his first Singapore outing in this grade and has trialled well since; he won three races from seven starts before arrival and should be hard to beat with Duric up. The dangers may come from a pair of likely improvers just out of Maiden grade. PRIME TIME broke through last start when resuming and although poorly drawn he is yet to run a bad race and should be handy, while BUURAQ is bred for much longer but defied his breeding to win last start and could go on with it. Of the others, LONGHU is resuming and has a good record this class, surface and distance with a nice trial a pointer, while YULONG FAST STEED led before weakening over 1400m last start, is better suited here and from good gate should be prominent. Keep UNCONQUERED safe down in grade with market best guide. Betting Strategy – RESTRAINED win.

1 RESTRAINED *** Battled on at first Singapore outing over this trip and has trialled well since. Improves for the run and with Vlad Duric to ride hard to beat. 

2 ROBIN HOOD ** Dropping in grade but all wins have been over longer. Will get back but could close late. 

3 UNCONQUERED *** Drops in grade and blinkers come off. Placed over this trip in Class 3 three starts back. Poorly drawn but could go forward with Michael Rodd and give a sight. 

4 LONGHU *** Resuming and has a good record this class, surface and distance. Trialled well. Watch market. 

5 THUNDER ** Won Taree Maiden and placed twice up to 1750m before arrival. Trial was solid but poorly drawn and might need longer. 

6 WISAKA * Resuming after returning with heat stress last start. Only win was at 1600m. Well drawn but might find these too sharp. 

7 SONG OF SPRING * Unsighted when resuming. Gets blinkers but improvement needed. 

8 STAR BULLET * Has changed stables. Was struggling before arrival in Singapore and hasn’t improved. 

9 BUURAQ *** Did a good job to win maiden last start. Bred for much longer but should be running on. 

10 PRIME TIME *** Broke through last start when resuming. Poorly drawn but yet to run a bad race and should be handy. 

11 YULONG FAST STEED ** Led before weakening over 1400m last start. Better suited here and from good gate should be prominent. 

12 HIGH LIMIT ** Fought hard and just missed in moderate field last week. Better in Class 5 but should be prominent. 

13 RED CLAW * Recent form moderate but capable in this class when right. 

14 PERFORMANTE * Found 1600m too far last start but placed on turf over 1200m start prior. Has speed but poorly drawn. 


Race 9


A competitive Class 4 and the one of most interest is the improving GOLDEN KID from the Jason Lim stable. The 4YO followed up an easy Maiden win over 1200m with a last gasp success in this company and whilst rising 2.5kg, he is promising, drawn to do no work and should be hardest to beat. BARTIMAEUS ran on well last week to win narrowly at good odds in this class; he rises 2.5kg but is well drawn and with 3kg claimer Krisna staying aboard can be in the finish again. One to watch is the resuming CHOCANTE who hasn’t won for over a year but he is rarely far away and his recent trial was solid. Of the others, LORD OF LIGHT was caught wide when resuming and could benefit from a positive ride, while SIAM ROYAL ORCHID drops back to a more suitable trip and will run on at value. Betting Strategy – GOLDEN KID win, saver on SIAM ROYAL ORCHID.

1 SUN DREAM * Drops in grade but hasn’t won for a long time and recent form not encouraging. Watch market. 

2 ELITE SILVERGHOST * Argentinean which has been freshened after two dismal efforts. Trial showed improvement and could improve for Michael Rodd. Gate no help. 

3 CHOCANTE *** Resuming. Hasn’t won for over a year but rarely far away and trial was solid. Can show up fresh from good gate. 

4 BARTIMAEUS *** Ran on well last week to win narrowly. Rises 2.5kg but well drawn and can be in the finish again. 

5 BUSHIDO * Drops back in trip after returning lame last start. Blinkers back on and gate no help. 

6 GOLDEN KID *** Followed up easy Maiden win with last gasp success last start coming from off the speed. Rises 2.5kg but promising and from the good gate should be handy throughout. 

7 SIAM ROYAL ORCHID *** Run down over 1600m on turf last start. Just missed at prior start in similar company to this. Poorly drawn but will be running on. 

8 DREAM COMES TRUE * Struggling at recent outings and hasn’t won for over two years. Freshened but no. 

9 LIM’S SHOT * Battling in this grade and hasn’t won for a long time. 

10 LORD OF LIGHT *** Caught wide and battled on when resuming. Will be improved and could benefit from a positive ride. 

11 SILVER WAY * Returned to form to win a Class 5 last start but will find this harder. 

12 GOLD FAITH * Needs to improve on recent efforts. Best form over longer. 

13 BEER GARDEN ** Has struggled since Maiden win but excuses last start and could improve at odds. 

14 GOLD CROWN * Has battled on at recent starts but hasn’t won for over two years. Best form on turf. 

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