Racing

Third-time lucky for Lady Sprintbok

Filly is Meagher's first winner for AJ's Stable

First-up on Nov 15, she beat only two home in the Restricted Maiden event over 1,200m.

Two weeks later, the three-year-old chestnut filly Lady Sprintbok showed the benefit of the debut run to race forward to finish second behind Win Win in the Open Maiden event over the flying Polytrack 1,000m.

On Saturday, it was third-time lucky for the Daniel Meagher-trained Australian-bred, who improved further for a half-length success in the $75,000 Restricted Maiden event over 1,200m on turf.

Surprisingly, the win dividend was good - $49 - for a horse with the best form among the three raced horses in the field of 12.

The rest were debutants. They included four trial winners - Bad Boy Black, Fighting Hero, Lucky Jinsha and Nate's Champion.

Meagher was delighted, of course, with Lady Sprintbok's victory. It was his first winner for the emerging AJ's Stable.

First put on the Kranji map through the deeds of Cliff Brown's handy mare Ararat Lady, AJ's Stable has recently spread its wings with more buys and takeovers.

Besides Meagher, the horses have also been sent to trainers John O'Hara, Jason Lim, Jason Ong and Michael Clements, who saddled the stable's debutant Power Of Ifreeth in the same race. He finished fifth.

Bought as an unraced filly, Lady Sprintbok is the first AJ's Stable galloper to get the Meagher polish - and the first to shine for the new pairing.

"It's our first winner for AJ. He's been with us in the last six months, and he was very happy when I spoke to him over the phone just now," said Meagher.

"It's a $75,000 race - and it's not bad money."

Ridden by apprentice jockey Krisna Thangamani, Lady Sprintbok jumped well and joined the others scouting for the lead.

But it was the Jason Ong-trained Bad Boy Black, who is raced by AJ's Stable in partnership with Joe Giovanni, that spearheaded them on settling down.

Krisna parked Lady Sprintbok within striking distance. But the third horse, $11 favourite and debut third-place getter Sahabat, was a few lengths further back.

Krisna made his move turning for home and got his mount to eyeball the leader shortly after straightening. Lady Sprintbok gradually increased her lead and it was all over bar the shouting.

Fighting Hero, trained by O'Hara and ridden by Ryan Munger, charged home second, only half a length behind.

It was a top run worth noting for his next assignment.

Bad Boy Black wilted late, but managed to hang on for third, three lengths behind and half a length in front of Nate's Champion.

Lady Sprintbok clocked 1min 11.63sec for the 1,200m on the Short Course E.

She has amassed about $45,000 in stakes for AJ's Stable.

"She's still an immature filly. I have to thank CS Chin who rides her every day," said Meagher.

"She's by Written Tycoon, so she does have some kind of pedigree. She's speedy but we had to get her head right."

Krisna got to know first-hand that there is still some work to be done in that department. But trainer Ricardo Le Grange's in-form apprentice jockey was able to tap into her raw ability for that desired result.

"She jumped well and I let her roll forward. We then followed the leader," said the Malaysian rider.

"She was like 'blur' when she hit the front. She's still very green, but I was able to get her home."

HORSE RACING