Ararat Lady whips the boys
The best from the trials held at Kranji on Tuesday morning
Ararat Lady shouldn't be so good. Her mum and dad weren't superstars and, as a yearling, she went under the hammer for just $3,000.
But she doesn't know any of that and, from what little we have seen from her, she's got, what they call, that "great tick of the heart".
And it was this "great tick of the heart" which brought her a win and a placing so early in her career.
And, judging from the way trainer Cliff Brown has been moulding her, there could be many more photo-taking sessions with Arafat Lady coming up in the winner's enclosure.
The filly was at the trials on Tuesday morning and, by all counts, she impressed.
Ridden by Michael Rodd and jumping from the outermost gate in that eight-horse hit-out, Ararat Lady was never in a real hurry and, for most of the trip, she allowed the boys to show off up front.
That, they did, with Great Seven, Chopin's Fantaisie and Kiss Your Song always prominent at the head of the field.
But once they reached the top of the stretch, the "Lady" made the boys look second-best.
Mustering up speed at the 250m mark, she came at them.
Two hundred metres out and only Twickenham looked dangerous.
So began the battle to the line. A battle between an eight-year-old veteran and the three-year-old filly.
Locked together over the final stages, they went stride for stride. Heads up, heads down, there was no economy in effort.
If it was her aim to dominate, she did. In the shades of the winning post, Ararat Lady pipped Twickenham to the prize.
She had covered the 1,000m in 60.51sec. Not record-breaking but not bad at all.
Ararat Lady had two similar trials before her debut in mid-October last year.
She won them both - and with quite a bit of authority.
After running second on debut, Ararat Lady had quite a huge fan base and they backed her down to $15 favouritism in her second start.
Their money was safe.
Rodd timed his run to perfection, asking the "Lady" for an effort 300m from home.
She obliged, beating the boys rather stylishly.
We have yet to see her in action in 2019.
When he does go to the races, be sure you're with her. This "Lady" is no tramp.
Also on Tuesday, we saw a good run from Murrayfield.
Out of touch with the leaders until the 300m mark, he came with a barnstorming run to wear down Lucky Hada (Daniel Moor) and newcomer Mr David.
Ridden by I Amirul, the Stephen Gray-trained runner would eventually put half a length between himself and Lucky Hada with Mr David (E Aslam) a weakening third.
A hard one to pin down, his five wins have been well spaced out. Sparingly raced in 2018, he last saluted the judge in September and has yet to show up in the new year.
But keep him on your shortlist. He seems to be running into some kind of form and is always a good candidate for those novelty bets.
Tuesday's Kranji barrier trials results
1 Speedy Rose
2 Winning Legend (M Rodd)
3 Lucky Enough (D Moor)
4 Meteor Loui (I Azhar)
Margins and time: Hd, 4¼, 18¼ (1min 02.71sec)
1 Murrayfield (I Amirul)
2 Lucky Hada (Moor)
3 Mr David (E Aslam)
4 Richebourg (R Zawari)
5 Star Jack (M Zaki)
6 Magic City (F Yusoff)
Margins and time: ½, 2½, ¾, 17, 9 (1:02.39)
1 Ararat Lady (Rodd)
2 Twickenham (Amirul)
3 Great Seven
4 Kiss Your Song (J Powell)
5 Our Pinnacle (Moor)
6 Sacred Guru (B Woodworth)
7 Chopin's Fantaisie (G Boss)
8 Tales Of Summer (N Zyrul)
Margins and time: Hd, 4, 6½, ½, 1, ½, 1 (1:00.51)
1 Silent Boss
2 Axel (MM Firdaus)
3 The Nutter (Zyrul)
4 Heng Kingdom (B Thompson)
5 Clarton Star (Zawari)
6 Middle Kingdom (Moor)
7 Cracking Tottie (Rood)
8 Military Alliance (TH Koh)
Margins and time: Shd, 2¾, nk, nk, nk, 1¼, 4 (1:02.13)