They're Counting on a good show on Sunday
Clements' rising star is ready for 'Panasonic'
Assistant-trainer Michael White has a simple explanation for rising star Countofmontecristo's will to win even when up in class - practice makes perfect.
"He's top class. He thrives on racing; the more he races, the more he shows," said White.
Countofmontecristo is running in the $700,000 Group 1 Panasonic Kranji Mile over 1,600m on Sunday.
The fact he is stepping back up to the distance at which he met with his only defeat in eight starts was brushed off by Michael Clements' right-hand man.
"When he ran in the Singapore Guineas, he was nowhere near as good as he is now," he added.
"Getting back to the mile is the last of our concern. On pedigree, it would not give us much insight as the sire won over the mile, but in lesser grade.
"We are going with what we saw on the tracks and we have absolutely no worries he will run a stronger mile this time around."
Glen Boss will return to guide Countofmontecristo after missing out the winning ride in the Group 3 Jumbo Jet Trophy on Sept 10. That day the seat went to Englishman Alan Munro.
Whether the Joe Giovanni-owned gelding goes through the Singapore Triple Crown series to the Group 1 Dester Singapore Gold Cup will depend on his performance in each leg, said White.
"We'll see how he pulls up after the Mile, but we like to think he would go for the Raffles Cup (1,800m on Oct 22)," he said.
"We're not so sure about the Gold Cup, but I would say it's highly unlikely he would."
Clements will also saddle a newcomer to his yard, the formerly Ricardo Le Grange-trained Song To The Moon in the Kranji Mile, but in his case the race is being used more as a stepping stone.
"There was an OB97 race over 2,000m that was supposed to be run on Sunday but it was deleted," said White.
"We didn't have any other option than to run Song To The Moon in the Kranji Mile. It's not a suitable race for him as, it's a Weight-for-Age race and it's over 1,600m which is too short, but we have to find something ahead of the El Dorado Classic and the Gold Cup.
"Besides, half a dozen of the horses in the Kranji Mile are also in a similar situation as Song To The Moon."
Song To The Moon will be ridden by jockey Derreck David in the Panasonic Kranji Mile.
Tuesday's barrier trials results
1 Lim's Hunter
2 Ebraz (O Chavez)
3 Darc Belt (I Amirul)
4 High Limit (I Saifudin)Margins and time: 2, ½, 6½ (1min 00.23sec)
1 Bellus Wonder (S John)
2 Master Of Malibu (B Vorster)
3 Ichigoichie (V Duric)
4 Valerius (T See)
5 Paparazzi (J Powell)
6 Yellow Gold (WS Chan)
7 Mikcaipho (Saifudin)Margins and time: 1, 1¼, hd, nk, ½, hd (1:02.33)
1 War Affair (C Grylls)
2 Supernova (Duric)
3 Twickenham (Amirul)
4 Newlands (D David)
5 Gilt Complex (M Rodd)
6 Noble Liaison (P Dellorto)
7 O'Reilly's Dancer (J Powell)Margins and time: 1, nk, nk, ½, 1, shd (1:01.99)
1 Olympian Eager (Duric)
2 Knight Chen Bay (M Nunes)
3 Buenos Aires (Dellorto)
4 Golden Kingdom (N Juglall)
5 Could Be Pearls (Rodd)
7 Kings Ryker (Grylls)
8 Country Warrior (M Kellady)Margins and time: Nk, ¾, 2, ½, ¾, ns, ½ (1:01.01)
1 Giorgio (T See)
2 Uncle Lucky (Grylls)
3 Satellite Fighter
4 Yourstokeep (Nunes)
5 Don De La Vega (Rodd)
6 Parker (Juglall)
7 The Odds (Dellorto)
8 Land Below D Wind (Kellady)Margins and time: ½, 1¼, shd, ¾, ½, ½, 2 (1:01.63)
Yesterday's Penang trackwork
WORKOUTS BY HORSES RUNNING ON SATURDAY
Class 4 - 1,700m: Slow work: Mirotic *.
Class 5 -1,200m: Slow work: Q Nine Mac *. German Speed *.
Class 5 - 1,200m: Slow work: Lazaroo *.
Class 5 - 1,700m: Slow work: Hussar *.
Open Maiden - 1,300m: Slow work: Mystical Star *. D'Great Talent *.