Debt Collector in rattling form
The big boys strut their stuff at yesterday morning's trackwork
Just how good is very good? We will never know. Especially with a horse like Debt Collector. He just gets better.
Like a bubbling volcano feared by islanders on some faraway land, he can lie dormant for ages and then, suddenly, after some rumblings, spew venom.
Debt Collector's like that and that's why his rivals should accord him all respect when they face him in that 1,400m race on Sunday.
It was in no uncertain terms that the champ drew attention to his chances on the training track yesterday morning.
Taken out for a spin, he gave stablemate Gold Kingdom what looked like a two-length headstart before almost drawing level at the end of the sharp 600m sprint.
Regular horses don't do that. The special ones, do.
Anyway, back to that hit-out, Debt Collector had his regular rider Michael Rodd in the saddle when he reeled off the distance in a smart time of 36.6sec.
While we haven't yet seen him strut his stuff this season, we were recently given a sort of preview to what we can expect.
In the cinema world, it's called a "coming attraction". It's a sneak peek at what is deemed the next big thing.
Well, Debt Collector certainly gave us a look-in - and it wasn't just yesterday's trackwork.
It was a week ago that trainer Cliff Brown sent his stable star to the trials and the six-year-old passed with flying colours.
Yes, for the first time in 17 attempts, dating back to September 2015, Debt Collector actually won a trial!
And, like we have become accustomed to with everything, the six-year-old can conjure up, he did it in style, coming from last to win by 1/2 length.
We thought then that we had seen it all. Well, obviously we hadn't.
So, will we see Debt Collector romp home on Sunday? We hope he will as it would add another glowing chapter to his book of exploits. But here's what he's up against.
There's Blizzard who put in a sizzler yesterday morning when, with R Iskandar astride, he covered the 600m in 35.8sec.
Although having just his fourth start in Singapore, the seven-year-old knows the game inside-out, having won eight races in Hong Kong and Japan before being sent here to terrorise.
With Iskandar's 4kg claim, he'll carry 51kg. That's a massive 8kg less than what Debt Collector has to hump. It could make all the difference.
Then there's Elite Invincible. He, too, put on a show yesterday morning, running the 600m in 36.1sec. R Zawari was the man on the reins.
Trained by Mark Walker, the 1,400m trip might seem a tad short but he has won over the distance and he's in that kind of form which should see him right up there at the finish - trading blows with the big boys.
Finally, don't discard Mr Clint. One of Lee Freedman's "fearsome foursome" in the race, he had Ben Thompson in the saddle when running the 600m in 37.7sec.
He's been missing from the winner's circle since May last year and, like Elite Invincible, the trip might seem a little on the short side. But rest assured, come Sunday, Freedman will have him as right as a racehorse can be.
GALLOPS BY HORSES RUNNING ON SUNDAY
Sun Ares * (V Duric) 37.1. High Street 42.4. Majulah (K A'Isisuhairi) 39.4. Thoth Warrior * 37.7. Dayuan 36.5
The Nutter (M Rodd) 39.1. Catch The Tiger (J Powell) 45.3. Jupiter Dragon * (M Lerner) 36.5. Always Innocent 39.9. Bourbon Inheritor * (J Powell) 37.3. Pisca Pisca (S John) 36.6.
Bebop 37.1. Money King * (B Thompson) 36.5
Glamorous * (Rodd) 39.4. Gold Kingdom 36.6. Excellent Moon 37.3. Speedy Rose 38.5
Time To Rock (R Zawari) 38.2. Ol Mate Buzzer 41.7. Pioneer Seven 38.9. Miss Michelle * 44.9
Cracking Tottie 39. I'm Incredible * (M Kellady) 37.3. Hidden Promise (V Duric) 36.2. Yulong Fire * 41.1. Mings Man 42.8. Cai Poh Wang * (S John) 36.5. River Superstar 36.5
Street Party * 49.6. Mach * 40.4.
Debt Collector * (M Rodd) 36.6. Circuit Land * (V Duric) 41.5. Blizzard * (R Iskandar) 35.8. Jupiter Gold (M Lerner) 37.1. Preditor * (M Kellady) 38.3. Elite Invincible * (R Zawari) 36.1. Nova Strike 39.8. Affleck 37.8. Mr Clint * (B Thompson) 37.7.
Stunning Cat * (M Kellady) 44.2. Autumn Assault * (Y Salim) 34.6.