Big things ahead for Mister Yeoh
Trainer Cliff Brown may well have a third Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge candidate waiting in the wings, after former Victorian galloper Mister Yeoh ran his rivals ragged on debut at Kranji on Sunday.
The Australian handler already has Filibuster and Zac Kasa aimed at the famed 3YO series, which kicks off with the Group 3 Singapore Three-Year-Old Sprint over 1,200m on March 30.
A son of Wanted, Mister Yeoh certainly gave a strong push for his eventual inclusion in Team Brown following his seven-and-a-quarter-length romp in the $45,000 Class 4 Non Premier race over 1,200m.
But Brown was as usual treading carefully.
"Possible, but let's see how he pulls up. I still need to speak to the owner Nick Turnbull, who is a good friend of mine, and used to own Fitzroy here," said Brown.
Fitzroy won three of his seven Kranji starts.
Brown said Mister Yeoh had two starts in Australia and was quite unlucky.
"That's why we brought him here and it is a good advertisement for Singapore," he said.
"I thought he'd be very hard to beat first-up, but I didn't expect him to win like that. He will come on a lot from that first run."
The race was probably won from barrier rise when Mister Yeoh, a $20 shot, overcame his outermost alley to take the lead without having to use up too much petrol.
Other than Flash One, the mount of Nuh Komari, keeping him company early, Brown's newcomer did not have much opposition to worry about throughout the first half of the race.
Once jockey Michael Rodd gave a few shakes of the reins, the race was all over bar the shouting.
With Mister Yeoh in one race and the rest in another, Rodd could afford to sit up and pose for the cameras at the wire.
Golden Thunder (Ryan Curatolo) won the battle for the minors, one-and-a-quarter lengths ahead of Secret Squirrel.
The winning time was a splendid 1min 09.39sec for the 1,200m on the short course.
"I didn't expect him to run that well, but he showed he could gallop in his work in the morning," said Rodd.
"No disrespect to the others, but he did not beat a very strong field. He is quite a laid-back horse and we may need to put the blinkers on to switch him on.
"I'm still trying to digest the victory but, on that run, you'd have to consider him for the 3YO series."
The Rodd-Brown partnership went on to capture the $200,000 Group 3 Committee's Prize over 1,600m with Elite Excalibur.