2016 Horse of the year, Debt Collector made his long awaited return to racing in last Sunday’s Group 3 Jumbo Jet Trophy. Cliff and Barree Stable Manager Glenn Whittenbury decided to give Debt Collector a significant break from racing after some respiratory issues plagued the star galloper in the second half of 2017.
The triple Group 1 winner was sent back to Australia for a 5 month break at The Kelly family’s Newhaven Park Stud. Newhaven Park were the breeders of Dual Singapore Champion sprinter Zac Spirit, who himself had a break there before returning to Singapore to claim a second Lion City Cup and Champion Sprinter accolade. Zac Spirit now lives a permanent life of luxury in retirement on the famous Kelly family nursery.
Debt Collector returned to Singapore in May and clearly looked a more physically stronger horse after his holiday in Australia. Given a patient build up by Cliff, Debt Collector has had one lead up trial with an excellent 3rd, showing his customary dash over the last 200m.
Sunday’s Jumbo Jet Trophy saw Debt Collector carrying 58kg, giving the majority of his rivals weight. On jumping Debt Collector assumed his usual position with only a few horses behind him, and regular rider Michael Rodd had him traveling smoothly. Racing on the long course, Rodd decided to cut the corner before bring DC out to the middle of the track at around the 300m to unleash his customary burst.
Quickly making up ground on those in front Debt Collector surged to the lead in the shadows of the post, only to be caught by Preditor who had made a withering run from well back with visiting Hong Kong apprentice M Poon aboard. In the end Preditor got there by a nose form the gallant Debt Collector who had not raced for 294 days.
With that run under his belt, and a return to weight for age racing coming up Debt Collector is sure to be a major player in the feature races coming up in September, October and November.