Champ Alwin puts four in the bag
Reigning champion trainer Alwin Tan kept up his fine run with a four-bagger at Kranji last night and overtook Shane Baertschiger by a winner after three meetings in the new season.
His winners were BLUE DIAMOND (Race 3), WHITE COFFEE (Race 5), my best bet ROBIN HOOD (Race 7) and ABSOLUTE MIRACLE (Race 8), taking his tally to six.
Blue Diamond, who had worked well and had come down a lot in the rating, took the Class 4 Div 2 sprint over 1,100m on the Polytrack and gave French jockey Olivier Placais his 100th Kranji winner.
Although the tally took 15 years to happen, it must be noted that Placais rode only sporadically on the local turf since his first visit in 2002.
His best result was in 2011 when he rode 44 winners and finished fifth to Joao Moreira in the premiership table.
For good measure, the 32-year-old secured his double last night with a superb ride on Robin Hood, who paid well at $25 for a win in the Kranji Stakes C event over 1,600m.
Placais settled Robin Hood worse than midfield early, as Valbuena led from Justice First, the $21 favourite Kirks Ryker and Kate's Keeper in a pack.
On straightening, Robin Hood struck an equine wall. Placais deftly guided his mount to the inside, where there was a small gap. He took it and went after Valbuena. Responding to Placais' conductor-like whipping, Robin Hood shot down the leader 120m out for an easy win.
Nine-year-old White Coffee's victory was the most captivating. The way he exploded past the leaders midway down the straight for his 10th success in 69 starts belied his age.
Ridden by Oscar Chavez, he crossed the line first by four-and-a-quarter lengths from Stephen Gray's pair of Billy Britain and $11 favourite Whose Else's. Gray, who was looking for his 600th Kranji victory, had another second, Really Capable.