Racing

Inferno too hot to handle in Race 7

Cliff Brown-trained Champion Juvenile in fiery form

A lot has been written about the Cliff Brown-trained Inferno the past week by my colleague Brian Miller - on what a good thoroughbred he is and his current sizzling form.

I couldn't agree more.

I will add that, in my opinion as a 46-year racing veteran, the Barree Stable-owned four-year-old Australian-bred is a champion in the making.

With luck, the bay gelding can step into the shoes of the Brown-Barree Horse of the Year Debt Collector, a multiple Group winner who is now racing in Australia.

For sure, the star quality is there for all to see. The same characteristics, too, notably his running style.

Like his illustrious former stablemate, Inferno is a come-from-behind type with a turbo-charged finish.

Ultra consistent, he was unbeaten in his first four outings and then finished second last start with some excuses.

His victories included the $250,000 Group 2 Aushorse Golden Horseshoe and the $175,000 Group 3 Saas Fee Stakes, both over the 1,200m on turf.

He dipped below 1min 10sec in two of his wins, including the Saas Fee in 1min 09.36sec with his mesmerising powerhouse finish.

At his last start on Feb 29, he was backed as if he could not lose, at $6 for a $5 win-bet. No-one could blame you if took the plunge with that better-than-bank interest thinking.

But, as we all know, there's no such thing as a certainty in racing. Still, it was a grand effort to pound home for a 13/4-length second to Siam Warrior, after having to cover extra ground when carried wide.

Jockey Michael Rodd was queried after the race.

He stated that his intention was to be midfield. But, when the inside runners improved, he settled further back than anticipated. He added that, once clear in straight, his mount finished well.

That excusable expensive loss is now water under the bridge. Inferno is now working with a vengeance.

He won his recent trial in what Miller labelled as a win with "unparalleled impudence", zooming home to "win just like that" under new partner Vlad Duric.

The three-time Singapore champion took Inferno out for his final gallop on the right- handed Track 6 on Tuesday, prompting Miller to say "it would be suicidal to ignore the four-time winner" tomorrow.

Ditto.

HORSE RACING