Inferno demolition gives stable 3rd Lion City Cup

The great Zac Spirit winner of the Lion City Cup (and Champion Sprinter) in 2014 and 2016 was joined by stablemate Inferno as a winner of Singapore’s premier sprint race.  Running 1min 8.28 the new star of Singapore racing ran the quickest ever Lion City Cup and made it back to back Group 1 wins after his victory last month in the Singapore Guineas.

The latest addition to Glenn Whittenbury’s Barree Stable highlight reel, can perhaps best be summed up by quotes from trainer and jockey shortly Inferno’s astonishing win in the $400,000 Group 1 event on Sunday October 25th.

“I haven’t ridden a horse like Inferno in Singapore.” Vlad Duric

“He’s quite something else, isn’t he?” Cliff Brown.

To put these quotes in context, both Cliff and Vlad have been the dominant forces in Singapore feature races over the past five years, and each have been involved with many great horses, both in Singapore and in Australia. Inferno’s victory not only made headlines in Singapore, but other racegoers world wide showed their enthusiasm on twitter and other racing jurisdictions had also taken note.

Pre- race some comment were made with the drop back in distance from 1600m to 1200m, tackling Singapore’s best and more seasoned sprinters and the fact that Inferno had to overcome the outside barrier 16, as reasons why the big son of Holy Roman Emperor faced a huge challenge. However, close connections to Inferno were supremely, but quietly confident that he would overcome these challenges, and in the end there was never any case for concern.

Duric settled Inferno in a rearward spot from barrier rise, keeping him out of trouble as the leaders ensured a good pace up front. From the 600m Inferno had been positioned well although wide on the track he had clear air to launch from the 600m. Stable mate Zac Kasa was running a great race and momentarily hit the lead, before Inferno rounded up nearly the entire field and surged clear with a bit over a furlong to run.

Eased down towards the line, the $9 favourite had two and a quarter lengths to spare from Mr Malek with stable mate Zac Kasa just nabbed on the line to finish fourth.The 11 year old track record held by Sacred Kingdom in the KrisFlyer International Sprint in 2009, may well have come under threat had Duric punhced Inferno out to the line. Now a winner of 8 of his 9 starts, with that  win in the Lion City Cup, Inferno has now amassed around $900,000 in stakes money for the Barree Stable.

Inferno blitzes his 15 rivals in the 2020 Lion City Cup.

Barree Stable managing owner Glenn Whittenbury has had some wonderful racing moments in Singapore, but this may have been the best. Unable to be track side, Glenn watched the race alone in his home office, terrifying the life out his therapy dog and best friend Vito with a war cry that could be heard all over Kew as Inferno set sail in the straight. The rest of his family watched in another room as they are more intelligent than Vito. Vito’s behavioral improvements with the help of canine Valium over the past two years, have now seen a sad regression since 7.30pm Sunday, 25th. He may not recover.

Earlier in the day saw a great win in the class 4 1200m by the promising 4 year old Bluestone. Popular owners Dennis Cornwell and Tony Davies were track side to watch the win, and appeared delighted . Covid restrictions have impacted people differently and both could be seen licking the huge glass windows on level three after Bluestone romped to victory. We hope they were just overcome by emotion and this is not a common occurrence. Simply, it was an exciting win, and well enjoyed!

Simon Kok steers Bluestone to an impressive victory in race 3 on Sunday.

Bluestone took his record to a handy 4 wins from 10 starts and over $166,000 in stake money. He looks well above class 4, and both Tony, Dennis and Australian based owner Richard Pegum have plenty to look forward to with the son of Hallowed Crown.

Dennis and Tony celebrate Bluestone’s win in race 3.

New Arrivals have big boots to fill

Two 2019 New Zealand bloodstock purchases arrived in the stable at Kranji this week, and both have a bit to live up to. Given plenty of time to mature at Kilmore Farm and educated by Brooks Racing at Matamata both horses will race in familiar colours of Brown stable owner’s in Singapore.

At the NZB 2019 Yearling Sale in January, Lot 870 was by new NZ sire El Roca, out of the imported mare Pussycat Dream. Whilst not overly big, the stable did have the inside running with Cliff training the colt’s half sister What’s New. Weighing only 440kg, What’s New had showed plenty of ability from day 1 in the stable and whilst not big she was beautifully proportioned. Of course later in the year she would win a Group 2 and Group 3 race in Singapore.

Added to the benefit of racing the first of Pussycat’s Dream progeny, was the fact that the colt was also bred by long time stable clients Greenwich Stud. The colt was secured for $60,000 with Greg and Lisa Perry retaining a 50% share. The other 50% was quickly snapped up by those who had admired What’s New in Singapore and include Glenn Whittenbury, Dennis Cornwell and Michelle Norman who owns and operates Kilmore Farm at Matamata, the nusery used by Greg and Lisa Perry for all their NZ based bloodstock, and who look after all of Cliff Brown horses in New Zealand. The El Roca will race in Cliff’s Tarnpirr colours.

El Roca looking to be the 4th winner from four to race for broodmare Pussycat Dream.

Lot 129 at the 2019 NZB Ready To Race Sale was offered by Windsor Park Stud. He was by Zacinto out of the mare Prompt Payment, making him a half brother to the Singapore Champion Debt Collector. Since the purchase of Debt Collector Windsor Park had offered a number of progeny out of Prompt Payment, but on inspection they didn’t pass the grade in terms of type and suitability for Singapore.

Zachinto/Prompt payment has settled in at the stables at Kranji.

Lot 129 was more what we were after, although a touch immature being a late foal, he had DC’s head and looked an athletic type. Contact was made with Barree principal Glenn Whittenbury, and it was agreed that whilst we would bid on the horse we certainly were not going to pay overs for him. Cliff Brown racing was able to secure him for $80,000 and will be seen in Singapore sporting the famous Whittenbury colours.

We wish connections well with these horses, and look forward to them making their racetrack debuts.

Quick ascension after DC abdication

A week after the announcement of the retirement of Debt Collector made headlines in Singapore with Barree Stable managing owner Glenn Whittenbury extolling his virtues in an interview with Nick Childs, the famous Whittenbury colour’s were again in the headlines after tasting more Group 1 success this time with Inferno who easily won Saturday’s (26th September) Group 1 Singapore Guineas (1600m).

Having made a one act affair of the first (technically second) Leg, the Group 2 Singapore Classic (1400m) a month ago, Inferno started the shortest of  favorites in the Guineas. What people witnessed could only be described as an effortless victory in the Guineas by Inferno, who matched the mighty deed of Debt Collector’s wins in the second and third legs of the Singapore Three Year Old series in 2016. It does appear that the throne at the Cliff Brown Stable is now occupied by Inferno.

There is no such thing as a certainty in racing and with highly strung equine athletes nothing is a fait accompli, but jockey Vlad Duric did add to the stable’s confidence post trial on Tuesday 15th when he quietly said to Cliff “I think he’s improved.”

Drawing barrier one wasn’t ideal for Inferno, as the big striding bay prefers plenty of room. This scenario seemed to be playing out early in the Guineas as a very slow pace had him over racing with his mouth wide open. However, you don’t become a three time Champion jockey in Singapore for nothing and Vlad Duric, had him off the rails at the 400m, and ready to settle when Meryl (WH Kok) speared over three wide to go and inject more speed into the race.

Inferno then began to relax in the middle stages of the race. Hooking out on the turn Duric gave the son of Holy Roman Emperor time to balance up in the straight, before allowing him a bit more rein, and he quickly gathered in the leaders almost like a working gallop. Shaken up hands and heels by Duric, Inferno quickly put the result in no doubt and effortlessly strode to one of the easiest Group 1 wins seen at Kranji, by 1 ½ lengths to Rocket Star.

Inferno cruises to the line to take out the Group 1 Singapore Guineas with Barree Stable’s familiar colours.

The devastating win of Inferno yet again showcased Cliff’s incredible talents of having a horse peak on the day. With each subsequent victory more impressive than the previous during this campaign, his management of Inferno again highlights Cliff’s ability to have a horse keep improving each time it steps out. Together with a tremendous amount of hard work by all the staff (particularly Solleh his work rider and Zamri, Inferno’s at times suffering syce -Inferno can be nasty at times), more feature race wins look destined to follow. His next assignment will be finalised by Glenn and Cliff in the coming days. Whilst other stables may have had one or two Group 1 winners, Inferno represents Cliff’s sixth individual Group 1 winner since he arrived in Singapore. In that time, no other trainer comes close to this.

The post race debrief. Camera’s can be quite unkind.

On Thursday 6th of August 2015, Glenn Whittenbury and son Bryce made the journey from Australia to watch the Barree stable owned and Cliff Brown trained North Atlantic Ice run in a class 4 1400 on the following Friday evening. The second horse to be sent to Singapore by Barree Stable, was ridden by Rizuan Shafiq. Glenn and Bryce (along with all of us) roared him to victory, the first time the Barree Stable had enjoyed the thrill of a victory live in Singapore.

Having an owner make the trip, the horse win, and to enjoy celebrating the victory was hugely satisfying, as all in racing know, things don’t normally go to script. I don’t think anyone could have envisaged the replication of this joy and in so many big races in the years to come. Whilst Glenn is unable to attend the Singapore races due to Covid restrictions, that same joy has been relayed by many text and phone conversations over the past few days. Unfortunately for the DC crew (as Glenn calls his Singapore friends), celebrations are muted without Glenn, probably because he is not here to pay for the merriment.

Glenn knows racing back to front and how difficult it is to get top class horses. His continued support allows the stable the opportunity to try and unearth the next star. Very realistic in his appraisal of yearling prices, over the last 5 years Glenn has stepped up to allow the stable to purchase horses that we think will make the grade in Singapore. We don’t always hit the bulls eye, but with Glenn allowing Cliff to chart the course for his horses, this gives the stable the best opportunity to bring out the best in them.

Team DC  have all become quite close over the years, sharing the good times and the bad. However, any opportunity for some good natured ribbing is gleefully seized upon. Well, actually seized upon more like a pack of veracious piranha’s. It was Cliff’s turn to cop it this past week. Now, with this in mind, this year’s Victoria Derby will be compulsory viewing for the piranha’s , with the current pre-post favorite Ain’tnodeeldun looking the goods. Could be Glenn’s turn to be savaged, he knows why. But that’s for another day and another article.

With that seventh win (four at Group level), Inferno has banked in close to $700,000 for Barree Stable. By claiming the two Legs, Inferno is by virtue crowned the undisputed new Singapore Three-Year-Old Champion, even if he has already turned four given the modified conditions to the series in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, and also takes home $50,000 as bonus. Glenn celebrated with a well earned beer with his son Gregory.

Son Greg with dad Glenn, celebrate Inferno’s Singapore Guineas victory. (Greg managed 3 beers in the time it took Glenn to drink 1). Yes Glenn, your getting old.

 

 

 

“In Chris We Trust”

I thought that it was long overdue to put “pen to paper” to write about the exploits of one of the most important members of the stable team and a major contributor to my personal success.

A racehorse training stable is no different to any other business, with success or failure determined by the people within it. We are fortunate to have a tremendous team of people working together to keep the ball rolling.

Some twenty plus years ago a fresh-faced graduate of Marcus Oldham arrived looking for a job. I couldn’t have imagined then that he would become one of my best friends, someone I rely on regularly for advice and who I couldn’t imagine making a business decision without first running it past him.

For those of you who have not guessed, the person I am referring to is none other than Chris Bock (Christo/ Bocky/ Cedric). Aside from being all of the above, Chris possesses one of the best “eyes” for a horse you’d ever encounter and, in typical Christo fashion, his skills fly under the radar of most.

For the uninitiated to horse sales, days consist of hours and hours of walking, looking at horse after horse and maintaining focus the whole time. It also involves having the retentive memory to recall a horse seen days before. Now I must confess I don’t have these qualities and after a few hours into it I’m calling for a coffee and dim-sim stop, much to Chris’s chagrin. I can’t recall the amount of times my “goldfish attention span” has given out on me and I’ve left Chris to keep going on his own and for him to come back and say “you really have to come and look at this horse” and, as is regularly the case, he is right again.

To watch him at the sales is theatre in itself, book in one hand, cigarette in the other, looking at horse after horse, he patrols the barns searching for the next winner. I often watch the staff parading the horses in front of him sometimes with a look of, “who is this person in jeans, t-shirt and runners wasting my time?” laughing to myself that little do they know that the person perusing their horse is someone who pre-determines that horse’s success better than anyone else in the business.

While most of us crave recognition for our successes due to ego and insecurities I have never witnessed this with him. You read countless stories of bloodstock agents and their ability to purchase a good horse yet no-one looks at the money they have spent to achieve this. There is a list a mile long of agents that fall into this category, the supposed good judges whose budgets could keep “job keeper” going for another 6 months. Chris has the ability to find a nice horse at any budget level which, to me, is the greatest example of ability.

Christo’s list of achievements is long and in the last few years it has snowballed further and the arrival of Inferno is testament to his brilliance. Let me explain. The majority of us in this business are followers of fashion and as such we “run with the pack” at sales time. Inferno’s father, Holy Roman Emperor, was hardly flavour of the month and his mother had not had a runner at the time of his purchase. The selection of Inferno was simply done on “type” and it is Chris’s ability to see what others couldn’t that resulted in him turning up at our stable.

Stalking the Karaka Yearling sales

In this world of Covid -19 the logistics of attending sales will be very difficult so we have to work out how we best tackle the situation and continue to buy successful horses. I believe, at this stage, it will mean Chris will spend a few months away from Singapore at sales time as quarantine restrictions will not allow an easy transit from country to country. From a selfish point of view, I will miss his guidance and “banter” while he is away but I will sleep easy knowing he is at the sales doing what he does best.

During the sales period I strongly recommend that you spend a day walking around with him as you will learn more in a day with him than a lifetime with others.

Thanks again Christo,

Cliff.

Another elite day, so close to Incredible

The first September meeting for 2020, was again a great day for the stable with a treble, two seconds and a third from our runners. An excellent day could of been great, with Elite Incredible running a gallant second in the Singapore Derby, with race favorite Top Knight only catching him in the last few strides.

The day begun well with the first of our new 3 year old’s stepping out with Boomba and Zermatt running the quinella in race 2, the restricted maiden over 1200m. Boomba, whom one could possibly and somewhat accurately assume was named after his owner Barree’s Glenn Whittenbury, was actually given the name by Glenn, due to the horse’s quite short and rotund appearance on his arrival in Singapore. He looked like a little fatty Boomba!

Rather than hammer Boomba on the training track, Cliff allowed the son of Showcasing to gain fitness with three trials prior to his debut, with a significant improvement in each of these, before bolting away with the prize in his racetrack debut. Jumping from barrier No 1, Ruan Maia led throughout, and never looked like getting caught with Boomba lengthening magnificently when asked for his effort in the last 200m to win easily by 2.5 lengths. Stablemate Zermatt bred and owned by Greg and Lisa Perry finished off well for second, and looks a most promising type when he matures some more.

Boomba explodes clear on his race track debut.

Greg and Lisa didn’t have to wait long to taste success on the day, when another they bred strolled away to win race 6, the four year old restricted maiden over 1400m. The striking chestnut son of All Too Hard out of the mare Dirty, (cleverly named In All His Glory), relished the step up to 1400m and simply toyed with his rivals to win by a commanding 4 and a half lengths with Vlad Duric aboard. Having already showed he was above average with two seconds and a third from his first 3 starts, In All His Glory ran a nice 4th on August 2nd first up after the Covid enforced break. Punter’s also agreed the 1400m would suit, as he started an even money favorite, and most were in the line to collect well before the finishing post.

In All His Glory destroys his rivals in the 4 year old maiden.

Race 10 saw a most satisfying return to the winners stall for 5 year old gelding Hardcore. After consulting with managing owners Scott Bryce and Nick Conidi, it was decided to by-pass the derby and concentrate on the class 3 over 1800m. Race jockey Ruan Maia had gotten to know Hardcore well, having galloped and trialed him over the past month. It’s fair to say that Maia took a little while to handle Hardcore in his work in the manner that Cliff wanted, but his last trial helped convince Maia that he is best left alone early and produced late. All went according to script with Maia having Hardcore settled beautifully mid field, before giving him plenty of room at the top of the straight where he unleashed a powerful sustained run to win easily by 2.5 lengths.

Hardcore’s win continues the success of yearling purchases from New Zealand’s Westbury Stud’s drafts in recent times including Fitzroy (Swiss Ace), Golden Sword (Swiss Ace), and Inferno (Holy Roman Emperor). An as yet un raced Swiss Ace 3 year old named Golden Way in the stable, also purchased from a Westbury Stud draft, may well continue the trend. Hardcore has taken his record now to an impressive 4 wins and a second from 13 starts and a tick over $159,000, with Scott Bryce’s Green and yellow hooped colours likely to figure again in the winning stall in the near future given Hardcore’s impressive win.

Ruan Maia guides Hardcore to his 4th win in Singapore.

The stable saddled two representatives in the Singapore Derby. Pax Anami and Elite Incredible. After constant rain through out the day it was a bit of guess work as to whether either would handle the ground. Alas, for Pax Anami he floundered in the going when asked to sprint. Elite Incredible ridden by local jockey Joseph See, was given instructions to shadow race favorite Minister who would race on the pace, which he followed to the letter.

As the field rounded the home turn, See started to put the acid test to Minister and the two forged clear with a wall of other runners commencing a run down the middle of the track. Half way down the straight it was clear that Elite Incredible had Minister’s measure. With the winning post in sight See riding for dear life looked to have pinched the Derby with Duric on Top Knight set sailing hard down the outside but running out of runway. Alas, it wasn’t to be with Top Knight just getting to Elite Incredible and replicating the finish of the Singapore Guineas last year. Whilst frustrating for both horse and rider both were gallant in defeat. Group 1 races are so hard to win, but with Cliff turning the horses out in magnificent order for the big one’s, the stable will be hard to beat in future feature races this year.

 

Elite Incredible with J See aboard gets caught right on the line in the Singapore Derby.

 

 

What’s New arrives at Vinery Stud. The Planning, the Success, the Future……

Stable favorite What’s New has arrived safely at Vinery stud early this week, after the mandatory 2 week post export quarantine in Melbourne.  The bonnie mare retires from the track with 6 wins, 4 seconds and 3 thirds for prize money of $611,628.75. Vinery Stud’s Marketing and Communications Manager Racheal Finlayson has reported she has settled in beautifully, looks a picture of health and is friendly towards her paddock mates.

What’s New with her new friends at Vinery.

Grass delicious grass…..

Ultimately, a brrodmare is judged by the success of her progeny. However, when a race mare is retired to stud, that success can also be added too by both race track performance and what that mare’s immediate family have also achieved on the track. What’s New became a very valuable broodmare proposition with her outstanding 2019 where she won the Group 3 Silver Bowl and Group 2 Stewards Cup and ran a Gallant and unlucky 4th in the Singapore Derby. Her racing success has been well documented in past articles. Adding also to her value has been the recent 2020 wins of What’s New’s two younger half sisters.

Her new career at stud will be charted by owners Greg and Lisa Perry who own and operate Greenwich Stud Pty Ltd, an operation that has achieved incredible success both on the track and in the sales ring over the years from a small and select band of about 20 broodmares. Greg and Lisa have been long time supporters of Cliff over many years both in Australia and were very helpful in Cliff establishing himself in Singapore.

 

What’s New a new shining star for Greenwich Stud??

Quiet and unassuming, Greg tends to shun the spotlight in terms of his success in the incredibly tough world of thoroughbred breeding. Greg has an encyclopedic knowledge of pedigrees and Greenwich Stud’s Group and Black Type success stories as breeders are to0 many to mention. They do however include breeding the incredible champion mare Atlantic Jewel, and her Thousand Guineas winning 1/2 sister Commanding Jewel, Group 1 Darley Classic winner Delectation, Group 1 Flight Stakes runner up Sezanne, Group 2 Villiers Runner up Cabeza De Vaca, and also produced 2018 VRC Oaks winner Aristia just to name a few!!

The What’s New story off the track and the Singapore connection started some years earlier when Cliff purchased the Bloomsbury Stud filly Pussycat Dream (Oasis Dream/The Cat’s Whiskers) in the UK for Greg and Lisa Perry. After a short stint in training in Singapore, it was decided to send the mare back to Australia. Once breeding season rolled around Greg had selected Casino Prince as Pussycat Dream’s first suitor. Casino Prince it would be fair to say wasn’t the most fashionable stallion at the time, however the 4×4 Danzig cross that the mating would produce, certainly was attractive to Greg. And how right he was, with the result being What’s New.

From a strong New Zealand family Pussycat Dream crossed the Tasman whilst pregnant with What’s New. First date selected by Greg in New Zealand was with at the time recently retired super star of the turf Ocean Park. The resultant foal was sold at the Karaka sales and now races as Gorgeous Geisha in NZ trained by Nigel Tilley. She has had a great 2020 winning two races recently, taking her record to 3 wins from 9 starts.

Greg entered into a foal share arrangement for Pussycat Dream’s third covering with the highly credentialed Cambridge Stud stallion Tavistock. An immature yearling, Greg could see the potential where other’s couldn’t and was able to purchase her outright. Now a 4 year old mare the Tavistock/Pussycat Dream races as Desert Realm in Australia and is prepared by Trent Busuttin, and has taken her record to 2 wins and a second from just 6 starts. Currently spelling, the diminutive Desert Realm looks a most likely candidate for future success on the track as she continues to mature.

Greg’s fourth union for Pussycat Dream was with El Roca. Beaten a nose in the Randwick Guineas and a certainty beaten in the George Ryder, El Roca provided Greg with race track performance at the highest level, and also a replication of the 4×4 Danzig cross (successful with What’s New). Offered for sale at Karaka 2018, the colt was quickly snapped up by Cliff Brown Racing, with Greg and Lisa retaining shares, with the other shares quickly snapped up by friends and stable clients who loved What’s New. He arrives in Singapore this month.

Next up and now a 2 year old was a Tarzino colt. Tarzino had the best sectionals in Press Statement’s Caulfield Guineas (THE stallion making race), was multiple Group 1 winner and at the time the most successful son of Tavistock to commence stud duties. Greg will give him plenty of time before a decision on where he races. After a year off, Pussycat Dream returned to Australia and recently produced a colt by Pierro and will have a date with Vinery’s new stallion Exceedance (again a 4×4 cross to Danzig).

So with Multiple Group success, a family of winners from all those who have raced, a future of upcoming winners behind her, a magnificently gentle temperament, but a tenacious tiger on the track, What’s New has all the credentials to make it as a broodmare.

Beautiful Mare in a beautiful setting.

She will be given 3-4 weeks to let down at Vinery, before her first date with a stallion. Greg has settled on Coolmore stallion Calyx. Why? He is the fastest son of UK sire Kingman, who is quickly becoming one of the best stallions in Europe. Calyx was a brilliant racehorse with outstanding speed, winning the Group 2 Coventry Stakes and Group 3 Commonwealth Cup Trial stakes before injury curtailed his career.

What’s New and all her relations have all shown that essential commodity in the make up of successful racehorses, that is, they possess an enormous will to win. With Greg’s knowledge of pedigree’s and the bonnie mare’s will and toughness on the race track, the coming chapters in the What’s New story will be riveting. We wish Greg and Lisa all the best with What’s New and her progeny in the future.

Inferno headlines great day for stable

Inferno was the headline act of racing on Sunday 30th August and of the stable, as he demolished a class field in the Group 2 Singapore classic over 1400m. The meeting ended with a haul of four winners overall for the stable.

The day started well with a winner in race 1 with Miraaj, who franked his great 3rd over 1200m the previous weekend with a tough win in the class 5 1600m with Vlad Duric aboard. A recent purchase by Jass Stable (who won with Ararat Lady last week), Miraaj will now step up in trip in class 4 company.

Miraaj gets the day off to a great start winning the class 5 1600m with V Duric aboard.

Race 3 saw a gusty all the way win for Solar Eclipse, who ran second at his Singapore debut 3 weeks ago. Raced by Forever Lucky Stable, the Argentinian galloper started favorite, despite drawing the outside barrier. Duric rolled the dice and crossed the field to lead, and had just enough in reserve on the post to claim victory. Post race, Duric commented that Solar Eclipse became lost in the straight on his own, and would benefit even more from the run and when ridden off the pace to have something to chase.

The gusty Solar Eclipse opens his Singapore account at just his second start in the Class 4 over 1200m.

The fourth winner was brought up in race 13 with the ever consistent Gold Star breaking through for a well deserved win. Luckless at his past few, jockey Harry Kasim got a little further back than anticipated, but came to the outside of the field at the top of the straight, and unleashed a powerful finish to win running away by a length. Purchased by Cliff for long time clients Gold Stable, the son of Redente has now taken his record to an impressive 4 wins, 5 seconds and a third from 15 starts, and earned a tick over $222,000 in stake money.

The famous Yong family colour’s salute in Race 13 with Gold Star.

The eagerly awaited $250,000 Group 2 Singapore Classic (1400m) race 12 on the 14 race card, turned out a one act affair with Inferno probably serving up his most impressive win to-date. A winner of 5 of his 6 starts all over 1200m, the son of Holy Roman Emporer started even money favorite, in the field which most considered the best assembled for a Singapore Classic in well over a decade.

Jockey Vlad Duric smartly left Inferno out of the early speed battle upfront, allowing the big bay to drift back and smothered away a little worse than midfield. Settling beautifully for the champion hoop, Inferno eased his way into a striking position at the 400m. Given his head, Inferno produced a turn of foot rarely seen at Kranji and quickly went past the field, setting up a commanding lead with consummate ease.

Duric only used the persuader a couple of times in the straight to keep Inferno’s mind on the job. Running a sizzling 22.68secs split inside the last 400m, Inferno went on to score easing down by 1 ¾ lengths from Strong N Powerful with Mr Malek hanging on for third place. The winning time was 1min 21.77secs for the 1400m on the Short Course. With a third Group win in just 7 starts and a tick over $480,000 in prize money, Inferno will now tackle the Singapore Guineas a race that Barree Stable’s colour’s were carried to victory in by the mighty Debt Collector in 2016.

Inferno cruises to a breathtaking Victory in the Group 2 Singapore Classic, the Cliff Brown stable’s third success in the race in 5 years.

With a 5.30 start to race 12 (7.30 Melbourne time) Barree Stable managing owner Glenn Whittenbury was a bundle of nerves prior to the running Classic. Glenn, well known to many Singapore racegoers, has not been able to make his usual trips to Singapore to watch his horses due to the Covid 19 travel restrictions sweeping the globe.

Glenn has however found a new love, as he has been able to spend more time with his designer pooch Vito. With the whole of Sunday to get through before Inferno’s greeted the stater in race 12, Glenn took his mind off the race by spending some quality time with Vito. Glenn apparently had been seen at several pet fashion stores finding Vito some new fashionable accessories. With time to kill, Glenn helped Vito try on several new outfits that he had purchased for him. It would seem Vito is fast climbing the ranks of Glenn’s favorite animals, and has provided Glenn with an outlet to allay his anxiety during the Covid lockdown in Melbourne.

Friends of Barree Stable residing in Singapore were disappointed that Glenn was not able to attend the race day. Not that they like him that much, rather they enjoy the free drinks at post race celebrations.

 

To pass the the time on Sunday, Glenn tried several of the outfits he had purchased for Vito.

 

Connections over the Moon

Singapore debutante Moon Face made a great start to his career in the Lion City, with a commanding win in Race 3, the class 4 division 1 over 1200m. The 4 year old grey Argentina galloper who had two runs for a win and a second in Argentina, was well supported in the market on the back of an impressive trial last week.

In the stable since mid March, the grey son of Zensational was among a group of Argentine horses bound for Singapore, which were delayed due to a customs raid on the aircraft they were set to board in late December in Argentina. Covid 19 restrictions then further delayed Moon Face’s return to racing, so that when Sunday 23rd rolled around it had been some 430 days since he had last raced.

The in form R Maia shooting for his third straight win of the day, had Moon Face straight on the pace after barrier rise, settling in second place.  On straightening, Moon Face extended nicely and his winning debut was never in doubt, as he took command at the 300m and strolled in by 1.5 lengths.. Joshua Tan manager of the new ownership group Maju Racing Stable was delighted with the stable acquisition’s first up win.

Moon Face makes a great debut in the Class 4 over 1200m, with R Maia in the saddle.

Consistent mare Ararat Lady brought up a double for the stable when scoring a well deserved win in the $70,000 Beau Brummell 2009 Stakes Class 3 Division 2 race over 1000m. A superbly judged ride by Ruan Maia saw the Battle Paint five-year-old mare jump quickly from barrier No 3, letting the speedy Flak Jacket kick up on her inside. Maia bided is time, happy to let the mare travel on the leader’s outside while keeping a neck in front.

Maia allowed Ararat Lady to straighten and get her balance, just waiting for the right time to pop the question at the 400m mark. Extending beautifully under hands-and-heels riding The honest mare easily got the upper hand to win by three parts of a length to Flak Jacket. The in was Maia’s fifth of the day, with him going on to record his greatest haul of 7 winners for the day.

Clocking 58.18secs for the 1000m on the Poly track, Ararat Lady has now chalked up four wins and seven placings from 15 starts for around $220,000 in stakes earnings for the Jass Stable.

Ararat Lady proves to strong in the class 3 1000m on Sunday 23rd August.

EXCITING DOUBLE!!

Forever Lucky Stable seem to have laid their hands on a useful sort in Trading Post after he got on the board on debut at Kranji on Saturday, with a solid first-up win in the $50,000 Class 4 Division 3 race over 1200m. Known as Salton Sea in Australia, the Fighting Sun four-year-old raced like a veteran as he took a small gap at the 200m, and sprinted away to a commanding victory.

Trading Post ridden by Vlad Duric enjoyed a fairly trouble-free journey until the top of the straight when he looked  in a bit of trouble, snookered behind leader Ironclad and Sacred Judgement. Eventually the gap opened and the big bay shot through to win comfortably by 1 and 1/4 lengths.

Trading Post (V Duric) scores an impressive debut win on Saturday 8th August.

Josh McLoughlan, racing manager for the Forever Lucky Stable, was on track in his capacity as part of the media broadcast team, was delighted with their new acquisition’s flying start. Purchased by Josh after a debut win at Morphettville in Adelaide, Trading Post has taken a little time to get fit, and will improve on his first up run. “He was very professional and there is still plenty of improvement left in him, and I’m really pleased for the owners as they have been very patient. It’s onwards and upwards with him.”
The long awaited return of Inferno to the races was well worth the wait as he recorded a soft win at his racing comeback on Saturday 9th. Last year’s Singapore champion two-year-old was ridden for the first time by Vlad Duric in the $70,000 Class 3 Division 2 race over 1200m. Owner Glenn Whittenbury watched the race live from his home in Australia, with his family and his beloved dog Vito on his lap.
The Holy Roman Emperor four-year-old strolled in by 1 ¼ lengths from Legend Of The Sun with Golden Flame third another length away. The winning time was 1min 9.66secs for the 1200m on the Short Course.

Inferno scores a soft win in the Class 3 Div 2 1200m.

Inferno won the first four races from his previous five starts, including the Group 2 Aushorse Golden Horseshoe (1200m) and Group 3 Saas Fee Stakes (1200m), and until the forced suspension of racing due to the Covid 19 pandemic was looking to emulate another Barree owned galloper Debt Collector by taking on the three year old series in April and May.

The Singapore Three-Year-Old Classic (1400m) has had the ‘3YO’ annotation dropped to the more generic Group 2 Singapore Classic (1400m) given its rescheduling this year to August 30 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The first Leg, the Group 3 Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint (1200m) was cancelled outright while the Group 1 Singapore Guineas (1600m) is maintained as the third and final Leg on September 26.

Cliff was obviously delighted with Inferno’s performance. “He was very impressive. He did it very easily and , he also ran very good time. He will now head towards the Singapore Classic and eventually the Singapore Guineas, that’s the plan for him.” Glenn was contacted by many of his Singapore friends after the victory, but they were put on hold as immediately post race he took his other love, Vito for a victory stroll around the blocks of Kew. Vito has become Glenn’s therapy dog, as stage 4 lockdown in Victoria are in effect, and the Barree principle is unable to get to Singapore to watch his equine collection in action.

Glenn with his pride and joy Vito.

Glenn with his best friend Vito. The two share an emotional bond.

PAX ANAMI SCORES ON RETURN

After nearly 4 months away from the race track, Pax Anami made a great return to racing with a commanding win in the Class 3 Division 1 over 1400m on Sunday the 2nd Of August. The 5 year old son of Rebel Raider was purchased in Australia after winning a maiden at Ballarat when racing as “Cat Raider”.

His last start in the Group 2 Stewards’ Cup (1600m) was no indication of how well the horse was going, as he found an enormous amount of trouble and couldn’t get a crack at them when the sprint came on at the 300m mark.
A touch slow out of the gates, new rider Vlad Duric positioned the big bay a touch better than midfield on the outside about six lengths off the leader and favourite Strong N Powerful. Duric then improved his position to sit in a striking spot at the top of the straight. With a confident display of horsemanship, Duric rounded up the leaders and in the last 200m finished better on the outside to win with half-a-length to spare.

Pax Anami with Vlad Duric aboard gets the upper hand in the Class 3 Div 1 over 1400m.

Cliff has penciled in the Group 1 Singapore Derby (1800m) as a possible next start for Pax Animi on September 6th.“That was a good win, but I think there is still a lot of improvement to come out of this run. At his last run, he got badly held up in the straight and that was it. If not for that, he could have run a lot closer. We’ll quite possibly look at the Derby for him.”

With that third win from five starts, Pax Animi has now collected around $110,000 in stakes earnings for Buffalo stable’s Peter Lee and Nick Johnston. Both gentlemen were also in the ownership of Group 1 winner Laughing Gravy which also carried Nick’s all apricot colours.