One of the few pieces of Silverware that has eluded the stable, the Group 3 Moonbeam Vase (1600m), was won by Elite Excalibur on Sunday May 5th, and in doing so also notched up Cliff’s 500th winner in Singapore, since relocating from his Flemington base in 2008. Elite Excalibur or “Bobby” as he is affectionately named sent a stark reminder he was still a major force to be reckoned with in Singapore’s upcoming feature races with a brilliant turn of foot to win his second feature race in Singapore.
With a brilliant first up record and great 1600m form the stable was quietly confident Elite Excalibur would run a huge race in the Moonbeam Vase. The Moonbeam Vase was targeted long ago as Elite Excalibur’s comeback race and an ideal stepping stone to another tilt at the Kranji Mile on May 25th.
With some minor issues post the Singapore Gold Cup having been rectified, racegoers witnessed yet another display of Cliff’s training talents with “Bobby” first up for 6 months, produced a devastating burst over the final 300m, to claim yet another feature race for Cliff Brown Racing.
With Ben Thompson on board, Elite Excalibur was allowed to find his feet early in the race, settling a little worse than mid field. Eye Guy took up the running and kicked clear at the top of the straight. With an upset in the air with King Louis finding trouble, Preditor having too much ground to make up and Mikki Joy feeling the pinch at the 200m, it was left to Elite Excalibur, who was weaving his way through the traffic, to issue the challenge to Eye Guy.
Pinning his ears back, Bobby kicked hard on the inside of Eye Guy and inside the last 100m he gained the upperhand to win by half-a-length. Blizzard (Daniel Moor) ran on for third place another length away. The race time of 1.33.62 was only 0.34 second outside the course record established by Magneto in 2014.
The former Coolmore-owned and Gai Waterhouse-trained three-time Sydney winner (when known as River Wild) was purchased privately for Elite Performance Stable, and has been close up in many Singapore feature races, notably beaten a head in the 2017 Patrons Bowl and Singapore Gold Cup.The Moonbeam Vase win was very very sweet for all involved.
Elite Excalibur returned to scale to jubilant scenes as the throng of people connected with Elite Performance Stable swarmed around him, eager to get in the winning photo. Jockey Ben Thompson secured his second feature win in Singapore, and was delighted to have his parents on track to witness his Moonbeam Triumph.
With that fourth win, Elite Excalibur has now amassed in excess of $780,000 in stakes earnings for the Elite Performance Stable. He will join stable star Debt Collector in the Kranji Mile on May 25th, when some highly credentialed imports will take on the best in Singapore.