Exciting galloper Debt Collector (NZ) (Thorn Park) returned to racing with the same panache he showed as a three-year-old when he landed a nail-biter in the $200,000 SGP Gr.3 Jumbo Jet Trophy (1400m) on Sunday.
The son of Thorn Park went for a well-earned break after his three-year-old exploits when he landed the last two Legs of the Singapore Three-Year-Old Challenge, including the Group 1Singapore Guineas (1600m) in May, with what has now become his trademark electric turn of foot.
His work and barrier trials had been good, but trainer Cliff Brown had cautioned he may face a big ask first-up against seasoned gallopers at weight-for-age level.
But horses don’t listen to humans, but he sure responded to regular partner Michael Rodd’s hard riding from the top of the straight to just blouse out Nova Strike (NZ) (Red Giant) right on the line.
Brown again looked bemused by that fifth win recorded by a horse he has now put in the same top bracket as his champion sprinter, the just-retired dual Lion City Cup winner Zac Spirit (Flying Spur).
The day had actually not begun on the best note for the Australian conditioner when his two fancied runners killed each other’s chances by “playing pinball machine” at the start in an earlier race, but his other former smart three-year-old Fitzroy’s win one race earlier followed by Debt Collector’s game win when he thought he would need the run more than made up for the disappointment.
“It didn’t start very well today, but things have certainly improved since,” he said in his usual understated manner.
“Credit must go to the stable staff, (assistant-trainer) Tim Fitzsimmons and all the boys who ride him and look after him.
“It was an incredible win. He also defied the way the track has been playing when he came out wide. This horse can certainly do things other horses cannot.
“Zac Spirit was a great horse, but this one has to be up there with the best.” Debt Collector has now amassed more than $640,000 in prizemoney for his owner, the Victorian-based Barree Stable.
Race: Singapore TC Jumbo Jet Trophy Sgp-3 1400m.
Winner: Debt Collecter (NZ) 2012
Owners: Barree Stable
Trainer: Cliff Brown (Kranji)
Breeding: by Thorn Park (AUS) out of Prompt Payment (IRE) by In the Wings (GB)
Breeder: Windsor Park Stud Ltd; Waikato; NZ
Sales: 2014 National Yearling Sale - Select Sale; V: Windsor Park Stud, P: Michael Wallace B/stock; $30,000 2014 Ready to Run Sale; V: Prima Park, P: Cliff Brown Racing; $120,000