Hong Kong’s domination of Singapore’s most prestigious meeting of the year was completed when John Moore posted a magnificent one-two after Military Attack was chased home by stablemate Dan Excel in the Singapore Airlines International Cup at Kranji yesterday.
In a renewal considered one of the best in its history, Military Attack and Zac Purton turned the mile-and-a-quarter Group One into a procession as he came home three and a quarter lengths ahead of Dan Excel, who deprived Mawingo of second place by a head.
Moore now has a burning desire to plunder one of the most famous races in his homeland.
The Australian handler, who was securing a first international Group One victory on away soil, said: “I’m ecstatic to finally put the icing on the cake.
“I’m so happy – Zac Purton gave him the best ride you could ever see.
“There is Royal Ascot and the Prince of Wales’s Stakes but I would love to win a Group One in Australia.
“I shall talk to the owner and consider giving him a break and then getting him ready for the Cox Plate.”
Purton said: “He has blown them away.
“It was a phenomenal performance. Historically this race isn’t run at a fast tempo but it was different this time and I thought I would put him on the fence.
“I could see Pastorius was gone and then I got a saloon passage as it opened up for me like you could never have dreamed.”
Jane Chapple-Hyam’s Mull Of Killough ran an honourable fifth under George Baker, beaten under five lengths.
Baker said: “It was a great run. He travelled nicely and I thought I’d get into the first three but he just flattened out in the last 300 yards.
“But it was a terrific effort in his first run in a Group One.
“Now back to reality as I’ll be going for one ride at to Southwell on Monday.”
Godolphin’s Hunter’s Light finished sixth, having encountered trouble in running, while the Gerald Mosse-ridden Red Cadeaux found the course far too quick to get competitive off a fast early pace set by Flax and Meandre.
Mosse said: “The reason is simple – the ground was too firm and they went too quick for him. He could never lay up on that ground and over the shorter trip.”
Hunter’s Light’s trainer Saeed bin Suroor said: “He looked a bit unlucky in the race.
“We will take him back to England and give him a break now.”
Olivier Peslier said Prix Ganay winner Pastorius came back from the race with an injury.
He said: “He had a good run behind horses until the last corner and has come back with cuts to his front legs.”
Irish raider Balmont Mast had earlier finished a fair fourth behind Hong Kong sprint hero Lucky Nine in the KrisFlyer International Sprint.
Trained by Eddie Lynam and ridden by Johnny Murtagh, Balmont Mast was left with plenty to do after missing the break in the six-furlong contest.
While he stayed on strongly to force a photo for third, he proved no match for the Hong Kong-based winner.
Trained by Caspar Fownes and ridden by Brett Prebble, Lucky Nine seemed to be a comfortable winner over Australian runner Bel Sprinter, with Super Easy clinging on to third.
Lucky Nine was a Group One winner in Hong Kong back in February but after failing to shine in his two most recent starts, Fownes was relieved to see his charge back on form.
He said: “He’s been unlucky overseas in the past but he’s shown what he can do.
“The pressure was on after his last run so I’m glad it’s worked out.”
Murtagh and Lynam felt Balmont Mast was unlucky not to claim second.
The rider said: “I just got a little bit squeezed at the gate which meant I was further back than ideal, but he’s run his heart out.
“In a couple more strides he would have been second.”
Lynam envisages a strictly international campaign for Balmont Mast.
He said: “Like Johnny said, in a few more strides we would have been second.
“This horse had problems with his wind and it was his first race away from home on grass.
“Let’s hope he gets invited back next year because he has the heart of a lion.
“Hopefully we might get invited to Hong Kong and there is also the Breeders’ Cup Sprint.”
Meanwhile Investec Derby candidate Telescope could have a racecourse gallop at Lingfield this week if he emerges unscathed from a workout in Newmarket yesterday.
The Michael Stoute-trained colt missed his intended seasonal reappearance in the Dante Stakes at York last week after grazes on his legs became infected.
Telescope, who is owned by Highclere Thoroughbred Racing, was put through his paces on the Limekilns gallop in Newmarket, working in company with an older stablemate.
Highclere’s Harry Herbert reports Stoute to be satisfied with the gallop and Telescope could now go to Lingfield on Wednesday with the Epsom Classic still in their sights on June 1.
“Michael has called me and he seemed very pleased,” said Herbert.
“We’ll just see how he is before we move on to the next step.
“If he comes through this OK, we’ll take him to Lingfield on Wednesday where he will have his racecourse gallop.”
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