Infantry's Raffles Cup bid hangs in the balance
Trainer Alwin Tan's charge recuperating from minor leg injury suffered during Panasonic Kranji Mile win
Panasonic Kranji Mile winner Infantry has suffered a minor injury which has suddenly put him in a race against time to still get a run in his intended next assignment, the Raffles Cup.
While the mood in the Alwin Tan camp was understandably buoyant shortly after the Tavistock five-year-old landed the Group 1 Panasonic Kranji Mile over 1,600m last Sunday, first-up since his Emirates Singapore Derby (2,000m) win in July, frowns soon surfaced when it was found out he came back with a deep cut to his near hind fetlock.
Tan had made no secret even before the Kranji Mile win that the yet-to-be conquered Singapore Triple Crown series was Infantry's target, but with that untimely setback, the second Leg, the Group 1 Raffles Cup over 1,800m on Oct 22 now hangs in the balance.
The 2016 Singapore champion trainer is, however, not giving up on seeing the classy Thai-owned galloper recover in time.
"Infantry got a bad cut in the Kranji Mile. It is probably a horse behind him that tripped on him," said Tan.
"It goes to show what a big heart he has. Another horse would have lost the race with such a cut, but he endured the pain and still gave it 100 per cent to win.
"The leg is now bandaged up. I've done everything I could to treat it, and fingers crossed, he can still make it for the Raffles Cup. I've still got hope.
"But if he misses out, he will still head for the Singapore Gold Cup (over 2,200m on Nov 12). I will just have to freshen him up and work him more on the endurance."
Tan was also happy with his second Kranji Mile runner Nova Strike, a closing seventh after jumping from a wide barrier.
While the Red Giant five-year-old may not be as classy as his stablemate, Tan may consider him as a standby replacement in the Raffles Cup.
"I was very happy with Nova Strike's run in the Kranji Mile. He was drawn wide but he still ran well," he said.
"To me he's a miler, but maybe he can go over slightly longer. I will have to discuss with the owner (Nova Racing Stable) if we will run him in the Raffles Cup."