I'm Incredible... most definitely
Trainer Baertschiger's charge lifts the $800,000 Queen Elizabeth II Cup in a photofinish
Incredible. He's incredible. What more is there to say? So, take a bow, Shane Baertschiger for a training feat which must surely make you the envy of all at Kranji.
When I'm Incredible turned on the style to nose out King Louis in yesterday's Queen Elizabeth II Cup, Baertschiger achieved what many trainers can only dream about.
He had shaped and moulded the five-year-old chestnut to three straight feature wins, beginning with the Committee's Prize in August, followed by the El Dorado Classic last month and then last evening.
The crowning glory, you might say. The $800,000 Queen Elizabeth II Cup. Incredible.
Yesterday at Kranji, I'm Incredible wasn't just that. He was super. And super too, was the man in the saddle, Vlad Duric.
That guy's the reigning champion and in that 1,800m race, he had to summon everything in his vast arsenal to get the verdict. Incredible.
With visiting jockey William Pike doing everything except carry King Louis over the line, Duric had to ride the race of his life to win.
In the stands, everyone was off their seats. Never mind who they had punted on, there was pandemonium anywhere you looked. It could have gone either way.
Photofinish! Then the anxious wait. Finally, the number 9 was flashed on the board. Incredible.
Duric was more relieved than ecstatic. When asked by race commentator Nicholas Childs, if he was confident he had won, he sheepishly shook his head.
"Both of us didn't know who'd won," he said. "Pike must be disappointed."
But he knew that he had won on a really special animal. "He's so genuine," he gushed. "I was really confident. I'm glad we got the job done."
As for Baertschiger, when asked if he was thinking of the Horse Of The Year award for his horse, he gave the classic answer. "Three features in a row and one of them a Group One. No, I don't care if he's Horse Of The Year."
Well, the rest of us do and right now, he must feature on the top of everyone's list.
If you must know, Sun Marshal (Joseph Azzopardi) ran third with Countofmontecristo taking fourth.
Earlier in the day, we saw another horse put himself in the running for honours - if not this year then, most definitely in 2020.
Already one of the "stars" of 2019, Fame Star made it four off the reel and six from 15 starts when he took top sprint event of the afternoon - the Class 2 race over the 1,200m.
With what he has done so far, Fame Star must be gold dust for the Toast Trusts & Kadima Stable.
And why not?
He shouldn't be so good. His mum and dad aren't superstars - but he has, at this stage of his career, shown us all that he has that "great tick of the heart". Like yesterday, in that last throw of the dice, he had shown us that he had more desire than the rest.
Four off the reel isn't something that comes every day. So, hat's off to his trainer John O'Hara for turning his "regular" runner into something really special.
Yesterday, when having his first start in Class 2 and ridden by top apprentice Simon Kok, Fame Star won like a really good horse. So, don't go betting against him getting five-in-a-row.
He's already being targeted at the EW Barker Trophy race next month. He might just whip them.