Four-year-olds look fighting fit
Grand Koonta and Bold Thruster impress at morning trackwork
It's a small programme. Just eight races on the one-day standalone card. But it could be worth your while to be on that train to Kranji on Friday night.
Right now, the Class 2 sprint does boast an exciting line-up. It's actually quite an outstanding line-up, competitive enough to whet the appetite of any true racing fan.
For one thing, it brings together four, five, six and seven-year-olds in a race over the 1,200m.
But, for now, the thing to savour does look to be the contest for supremacy between two of the three four-year-olds in the pack - Bold Thruster and Grand Koonta.
The other is the very-talented Revolution, who has banked in more than $280,000 from five wins on the Polytrack.
But, down to the nitty-gritty, let's zero in on Grand Koonta and Bold Thruster. Both were seen on the training track and both dazzled.
Grand Koonta had Alysha Collett aboard when running 600m in 39.8sec yesterday morning. It was an impressive piece of work from the youngster who, in five Kranji starts, has won thrice and placed second twice.
Collett, who picked up a three-day suspension for a careless ride on Archie on Friday night, sought and was granted a "stay of execution" so that she could ride on Friday night, won on Grand Koonta on Aug 11.
That day, her mount had just two behind him for almost all of the 1,200m trip. Woken up by Collett at the 300m mark, he was doing great in the closing stages and, showing fighting spirit, took the race by a nostril.
John Powell, on second-placed Elite Power, had ridden a copybook race but, in the circumstances, could do and ask for nothing more.
It's worth noting that the top five runners in the race all broke 1:10sec for the 1,200m.
By Dark Angel, Grand Koonta's three wins have all been on the turf.
As for Bold Thruster, he was on the training track on Monday morning and, as is sometimes the way with trainer Michael Clements' runners, he had two gallops against the clock.
He clocked 39sec in the first and, after a brief rest, was back out on track where he ran the 600m in a swift 34sec.
Bold Thruster registered a hat-trick early in his career and, had he not been beaten half a length by Zac Kasa in a race similar to the one he will run on Friday, it would have been seven on the trot.
While he is now with trainer Clements, it is worth noting that all of Bold Thruster's six wins were achieved when he was prepared by Shane Baertschiger.
His run of victories came to a halt in the Lion City Cup. Backed down to second favourite, he didn't get any favours and ran sixth to that other Baertschiger runner, Aramco.
Last time out in the Merlion Trophy race on Aug 25, Bold Thruster had Joseph Azzopardi in the saddle. The punters liked what they saw of him and backed him accordingly. They sent him off as third favourite and, after setting the pace, he was caught by stablemate Countofmontecristo.
Bold Thruster will have to carry a punishing 60kg in Friday's race, while Grand Koonta gets in with 51.5kg. Will that make the difference?