Friday Flash – 7th October 2022

Headline News;

KING ARTHUR wins again in Singapore – his 9th career win in exactly 12 months breaking the Class record in the processDavid Ellis returns from a successful visit to review the Te Akau Singapore operation

Jamie Richards made his debut as a Hong Kong Trainers sending three runners to Happy Valley races on Wednesday evening

Fortuna has two runners on Saturday –  one in NZ and one in Singapore
New Zealand – Matamata – Saturday 8th

LEADERBOARD contests the Open 2000m event – Race 10 @ 4.09pm – Opie Boson to ride from Barrier 6. Disappointed at New Plymouth last start 1800m but did strike a sticky track which may be his excuse – on path to NZ Cup and this race suits as part of the build up. 2000m may be a bit short, but gets a top rider and track conditions to suit – should be running on strongly – place chance

Singapore – Saturday

OLYMPIA runs in the Class 5 1000m Poly – Race 8 @ 3.30pm Sing time (8.30pm NZT) – Stable Apprentice Jerlyn Seow, claiming 3kgs, rides from barrier 8 – Was a tearaway leader last start and could not sustain the run. Has been a very consistent performer – will be ridden more conservatively this time – can feature at odds

Fortuna Track work – Matamata
Tuesday  4th October

No timed Fortuna trackwork today

Fortuna Track work – Singapore
Saturday  1st October

Kermajack (Jerlyn) – 1000/600 36.5; Olympia (Yusoff) – 800/600 37.5; Rocky (Jake) – 800/600 39;

Tuesday  4th October

Deception (Aslam) – 1000/600 36.5;

Other News

KING ARTHUR wins again in Singapore – his 9th career win in exactly 12 months breaking the Class record in the process – see full story below;

Fortuna’s KING ARTHUR imperious again in Singapore securing his 9th career victory – 2nd October

The five year old Gelding KING ARTHUR (by I Am Invincible out of Pentasia) who had already secured eight wins in Singapore since 2nd October 2021, lifting his rating from 52 to 101 in the process, demonstrated that he deserved to sit among the current elite thoroughbreds in Singapore when taking out the Kranji A Stakes 1200m Turf event, smashing the Class record in the process. Drawn nicely in Barrier 2, the Te Akau Racing Stable Apprentice, Fadzli Yusoff, had King Arthur away well and was content to lob along in 4th place one off the rail and in behind a hot pace set by two tear away leaders in Sky Eye and Illustrious. Turning for home, King Arthur was still 4 lengths adrift of Sky Eye, but Yusoff got busy on him and was able to get his head in front of a gallant Sky Eye, going to the line with a half length margin in a winning and Class record time of 1.08.51.

Click HERE to see the race replay

Te Akau Racing’s Singapore Trainer, Donna Logan, who was hosting Te Akau Racing Principal, David Ellis, visiting from New Zealand, was over the moon. “Gee, he is well named, this horse isn’t he, he is a real super star in our stable – fabulous effort by the horse and a lovely ride by Yusoff, who just rides him so well. My heart is bursting with pride with the great result for the horse and all of the staff who just love him to bits. Its just fabulous as well to have the big boss of Te Akau Racing, David Ellis here to see this result on top of our other winner, Charmington, earlier in the day, a horse that David acquired and sent up to Singapore. And what a fantastic result for John Galvin and his Fortuna Racing team of Owners – the Fortuna Racing Stable has now had 17 wins in Singapore in 2022, 7 of them courtesy of King Arthur – they have been great supporters of Singapore Racing for many years and deserve every success that they get.”

“King Arthur” – Win #9 – 2nd October 2022

Fortuna Racing’s John Galvin, who had been on hand in Singapore in July when King Arthur had last won, was watching the race from his home in New Zealand. “Wow, that was just awesome to watch – on paper he was the horse to beat, but they still have to do it and to be fair, he was probably still one race away from being fully fit, so to come out and win again like this is just a fabulous result for the horse, Donna Logan, her stable staff and my wonderful team of Owners. And full marks to Yusoff, he has really matured this year as a rider – he was content to let King Arthur relax even when the leaders had got away to a decent break.”

Te Akau Principal David Ellis, Fadzli Yusoff and Donna Logan post race
KING ARTHUR was originally raced in Sydney, Australia as Tintagel by clients of the Bjorn Baker Stable, but after two race day starts and not meeting their expectations, they decided to put him on the market and he was purchased by John Galvin on the advice of former Singapore Trainer, Mark Walker, out of the October 2020 Inglis Digital Sale for A$25,000. He is raced by The Fortuna King Arthur Syndicate, an ownership group of 31 individuals from New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong and Malaysia. He has now accumulated S$442,000 with nine wins, six 2nds and two thirds from 22 starts in Singapore.

David Ellis returns from a successful visit to review the Singapore operation

Te Akau principal David Ellis has returned from a 6 day visit to Singapore to review the Te Akau Racing Stables operation and conduct talks with Senior Officials from the Singapore Turf Club. David attended the race meeting on October 2nd and was on hand to join the celebrations with two Stable runners, firstly the Te Akau Racing syndicated Charmington winning for the 3rd time in Singapore and Fortuna Racing’s King Arthur, who took out the feature race on the program, giving him 9 victories in exactly 12 months.

David was delighted to see Te Akau Singapore Trainer, Donna Logan in the hunt for the premiership. “I can’t speak highly-enough of the job that she is doing and the quality of our Kranji team,” he said. “Everybody involved in Singapore racing loves Donna, she is very popular. For her to be in front in the premiership after only being there for four years and just her first year at the helm of the Te Akau operation is an enormous credit to her.”
“All of our stable runners presented in great order and it is clear to me that all of our horses in Singapore are in great hands.

“It was a big thrill for me to see a horse that I purchased and syndicated by Karyn, Charmington, win for the 3rd time from just five starts and Fortuna Racing’s King Arthur was just super in winning the big race on the day – John Galvin’s Fortuna Racing Team is just flying in Singapore with 17 wins for the year and in hot contention to be the leading Owner for the 2022 year – John has supported Te Akau with its Singapore operation from day one in 2010 which is great to see”

David also met with Senior officials from the STC and came away from those meetings with a renewed sense of optimism about the future of Singapore Racing.

“It’s no secret that the Turf Club has had its difficulties during the Covid lockdown period but with crowds now returning on race days things are slowly turning to normal and key appointments to the senior management team herald a renewed approach to racing administration and growth initiatives at the club  and a brighter future ahead – we are expecting some major announcements from the STC shortly. I am going to continue our support for the Singapore operation and will be looking to buy suitable candidates for Singapore racing from the upcoming Ready To Run Sale”


Jamie Richards made his debut as a Hong Kong Trainer sending three runners to Happy Valley races on Wednesday evening

The three runners, Rattan Kingdom, Flying On The Turf and Fortune Master finished 2nd, 5th and 8th respectively – this writer spoke with Jamie Thursday morning and he expressed satisfaction with his initial debut “Two of my runners were favourites but rail was out in the widest position and luck didn’t quite go our way, but overall I am happy with how we are going” he said

Richards arrived in Hong Kong late last season to set up his stable after numerous years at the helm of Te Akau Racing in New Zealand, where he trained with remarkable success at home and across the Tasman in Australia.

The 33-year-old is synonymous with training exceptional talents such as Melody Belle, Probabeel, Te Akau Shark, Xtravagant, Gingernuts and Avantage. He was crowned New Zealand Champion Trainer four times (2015/16 [with Steven Autridge], 2019/20, 2020/21 and 2021/22) and set single-season wins and prize money records in the process.

The winner of more than 50 Group Ones, Richards is aware of the challenges he faces in an entirely new environment – while lucrative – that is renowned for its unforgiving nature.

It’s very different (here in Hong Kong), from a training perspective the heat and humidity play roles and from a handicap and acceptances point of view it’s very different too with trump cards, preferences and the like, so it’s taken a little bit of getting used to but we’ve got Jonesy as our assistant trainer and he has a good handle on all of that,” he said. “There’ll be plenty to learn over the next 12 months and couple of years but in time hopefully we can sort it all out.”

Currently with 51 horses registered in his stable, Richards’ highest rated horse is Buddies who sits on a mark of 88 after transferring as a Group Three winner from the Tony Cruz yard. Palamos, whom Richards previously trained in New Zealand, is one of several four-year-olds in his care along with Starfire Gems, a 63-rated son of Japanese sire Maurice.

“It’s been plenty of different lunches and dinners with all of the owners and working that side of things out but I’m really pleased with the support that the owners have given us and now it’s time to do the job for them,” Richards said.

Guest Selector – Des Coppins

Hi John and Team Fortuna

OUR tracks have really taken a beating this season. To see Hastings cancelled was a no-brainer bearing in mind the big wet that hit the area and good old  Matamata is the saviour for the group ones this weekend. It’s a great result on another count to see the group ones move north to this venue  when  you consider the amount of group one horses that have been trained on the course by champion trainers both present and past. Rather fitting I reckon to see the the centre finally gets its first group one race in its 103 years of existence.

I’ll be focussing on Matamata for our horse to follow this Saturday but a quick word on the quinella selection last week, the Fortuna pair, Dancarina and Navalha at Riccarton. Dancarina was slow to begin and was taken hold of by her rider to obtain cover and Navalha was also restrained behind runners in the early stages to find a decent spot in the running. Both did well to finish third and 4th respectively but I reckon they are crying for a decent spring track. To be brutally honest the Riccarton track was favouring the wet trackers. It was a tad shifty to the naked eye.

Both horses will keep until next time.

Back to Matamata with some terrific betting races. Mark Walker is for a field day and the one I’ve settled on is the beautifully bred Outfit ( Tivaci-Costume) in race 4. She tended to lay out Te Rapa but ran the third quickest last 200 despite finishing 11th. The astute stable has opted for blinkers on Saturday and with Opie Bosson engaged a form reversal is highly likely. She’s always been held in high regard by the stable and I can see this four year old mare going through the classes.

The price of $7.50 and $2.50 is indicative of the class she’s facing and each  way all day as they say is the best attack.

Good punting!