Fame Star sets sights on ‘six pack’
The top gallops from the training track
Just how good is Fame Star?
Hard to tell. But one thing is certain. Right now, he is in harmony - and not just with himself. He is in harmony with the stars and all the planets.
Which is bad news for his rivals in Saturday's 1,200m Kranji Stakes A race.
Not only will he be shooting for six-in-a-row, but he will also be looking to opening his 2020 campaign the same way he closed his 2019 show. On a winning note, that is.
Fame Star was on the training track yesterday morning, although he clocked just 41sec for the 600m. So, the question. Can Fame Star take off from where he left off?
I don't see why not. Although out of action for the better part of November and for two months after that, trainer John O'Hara has made sure that his charge has been ticking over.
He sent him for two trials - one in early January and the latest being just last week - and both times he proved pitch-perfect.
Last season, on returning from the Christmas break, Fame Star ran second to Gingerella before putting it together in his next start on Feb 17.
There's nothing to say it couldn't be Groundhog Day. Indeed, the new season could be a stellar one for the five-year-old.
He stamped himself as a big-race player when he captured the EW Barker Trophy in emphatic fashion, taking the lead at the jump-out and snuffing out the challenge of Grand Koonta, who had plenty of fans cheering him on.
O'Hara seems to have found a winnable race for his champ and, that being the case, a "six pack" on Saturday - and an eighth victory in a super career - wouldn't surprise his owners, the Toast Trusts & Kadima Stable.
They'll be raising their glasses from their perch up in the "boxes" while in the "cheap seats" his true fans - the racing public - will also let out a mighty cheer for the horse who, so often last season, helped pad up their bank balance.
Also on Saturday, there will be busloads of fans cheering on Ironclad when he sprints from the gates in that Class 4 Division 1, 1,400m event.
From Steven Burridge's yard, Ironclad was on the training track yesterday when he put in a good gallop, running the 600m in 38.8sec.
Champion apprentice Simon WH Kok was on the reins. Kok, who has made a grand start to the new season with 14 wins, has been associated with Ironclad throughout his short campaign.
He rode him into second spot on debut. Stuck with him in his next start where, again, he ran second.
And he was the guy in the saddle on Jan 31 when Ironclad put his first win on the board.
Unlike his two previous runs where he produced runs from the rear of the field, Burridge changed tactics at his latest episode and instructed Kok to ride Ironclad from the front.
It worked wonders. Ironclad beat them all home.
Now that he has tasted victory, watch for the swagger on Saturday.