Star Jack looks the part, Latest Racing News

He may already be eight years old, but trainer Hideyuki Takaoka’s Star Jack is running like a horse half his age.

Just look at his statistics in the last four months: Two wins and a second from five starts.

The brace took his total to seven victories from 47 starts, stretching his earnings to $341,300. 

He was second thrice and third on five occasions.

If there is any indication that Star Jack is primed for another triumph, it is his final gallop for Saturday’s $50,000 Class 4 event over the Polytrack 1,800m in Race 4.

Although he did not break any records, just clocking 41.9sec for 600m after cantering one round, he looked a million dollars.

He was glistening and oozing with form. He sashayed back to the stable like a show horse in an equestrian competition.

Takaoka, who is well known for training stayers, has got Star Jack jumping out of his skin, so he will be the horse to beat. 

After all, he has only seven rivals to contend with and they are beatable.

The Steven Burridge-trained Ima should inject some speed into the race which will suit Star Jack’s come-from-behind style of racing.

If that does not happen, Star Jack’s stablemate, Poroshiri, can do it for him. With only 50kg on his back, he can spark a merry chase.

Star Jack, who dawdles in the rear early in his races, has the strong finish to come up tops.

Although Star Jack scored with Wong Chin Chuen and apprentice Akmazani Mazuki aboard this year, French jockey Marc Lerner is no stranger to the horse.

He rode the Japanese-bred gelding to two victories, including one over the Polytrack 1,800m.

In his last start on Aug 21, Star Jack went close over 2,000m on turf. He was ridden by Brazilian jockey Bernardo Pinheiro for the first time.

Last until the straight, he gained ground steadily but failed to catch the Burridge-trained Split Second by two lengths.

Now that he has improved by leaps and bounds, he should go one better.

Trainer Tim Fitzsimmons, who regained the lead by a winner from Donna Logan (46-45) with his treble last Saturday, should have a good outing with Golden Brown (Race 2), Mr Black Back (Race 7) and Dancing Light (final of 11 races).

All three won their trials and galloped very well during the week.

Golden Brown and Mr Black Back are newcomers, who, in fact, both won their trials impressively.

Golden Brown is taking on just seven new or fairly new rivals in the $75,000 Restricted Maiden event over the Poly 1,200m.

Mr Black Back, who comes with two wins (1,400m and 1,600m) and three seconds from six starts in Australia under Gai Waterhouse and Adrian Bott, is tackling the $50,000 Class 4 event over the Poly 1,200m.

Dancing Light, a two-time winner at Kranji, looks good enough in the other Class 4 race, but over the Poly 1,000m.

Thursday’s Kranji barrier trial results:

1 Super Salute (B. Pinheiro)
2 Always Innocent
(M. Kellady)
3 Flaming Kirin (C.C .Wong)
4 Gold Reward (T. Krisna)
5 It’s Complex (D. Beasley)
Margins and time: 
8, 2 3/4, ns, nk

1 Lucky Jinsha (Wong)
2 Muraahib (W.H. Kok)
3 Kassab (M. Ibrahim)
4 Big Green Hat (Kellady) 
5 Lim’s Dream (Beasley)
6 Nordic Gem (Pinheiro)
7 Watch Out Boss (R. Fahmi)
Margins and time:
1 1/4, 4 1/4, 3/4, 1 1/2, 3/4, ns

1 Hurricane (Wong)
2 Zestful 
3 Kinabalu Prince (Beasley)
4 Magnificent Gold
5 Lim’s Force (Fahmi)
Margins and time: 
1, 151/4, 5 3/4, 1/2    

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