General takes Command
Jason Lim’s three-time winner the star at the trials on a busy Thursday morning
Right now, the figure stands at 16 – which has him holding down joint-fifth spot with Jason Ong on the trainers’ log.
A horse like General Command can help boost those numbers.
The four-year-old was the star at the trials on a busy Thursday morning which saw seven hit-outs on the Polytrack.
General Command, engaged in the fourth, stole the show with a huge effort over the Poly 1,000m.
Partnered by Manoel Nunes and jumping gate 5 in that seven-horse affair, General Command stayed in a handy third behind Red Ocean and the grey Illustrious early.
The Lim-trained runner gradually made inroads and was beautifully placed turning for home.
Perfectly balanced by Kranji’s leading hoop, General Command gained on Red Ocean and Sun Ops, who straightened wide but came back in. Illustrious had dropped back.
General Command had it all sewn up with 200m left to travel. He went on to win comfortably by 1¼ lengths in a smart 59.05sec.
It was unmatched on the day.
A big horse, tipping the scales in the high 550kg range, General Command is a last-start winner.
That came on April 1 but he was not fooling anybody. He took that one by under a length but it was easier than the margin suggested.
Indeed, it is safe to say that General Command is a work in progress.
With just four runs under his girth, he already has three Poly victories and a second on turf.
He was denied a perfect score when beaten half a length by Silent Is Gold.
That day, the winner clocked a smart 1min 08.90sec for the 1,200m.
So far, Nunes has kept the faith with General Command, partnering him in his four races and five trials.
It is unlikely that he will want to give up the seat any time soon.
And no-one can blame him.
Later, in the fifth trial which was run after the track had been rolled, Tony’s Love tried to emulate the performance of General Command.
But he fell short, clocking 1min 00.72sec for the same trip.
It was nevertheless a good showing by the seasoned galloper from Ricardo Le Grange’s yard.
Not renowned for blistering speed, Tony’s Love was second last on settling but he made a big move when negotiating that sweeping turn on the far side.
Urged on by Simon Kok, who has not been associated with the galloper in all of his trials and races, the pair seemed to “click” .
Tony’s Love responded to Kok’s urging to be second on straightening.
Super Bowl, piloted by Nunes, led but was soon joined by the Le Grange runner.
The pair went stride for stride over the final 100m, with Tony’s Love gaining the upper hand close home to take the trial by half a length.
For a stayer whose wins have been over the mile and beyond, his effort over the sprint trip must be commended.
Keep him on your radar. Tony Love has got more wins in the bag.
Mention must also go to Kick, who took third spot.
He was out of sight for most of the trip but he made a forward move over the final 200m and was finishing really well.
From Tim Fitzsimmons’ yard and partnered by Daniel Moor, Kick has been looking for that elusive first win.
So far, he has had to play bridesmaid twice, beaten in races won by talents like Luxury Brand on Oct 8 and Deception on Oct 29.
Fitzsimmons has been patient with his runner, who has faced the starter just once this season.
That was on Jan 23. In that Novice event, he ran third to Bestseller who, we know, is one of the fancied runners in Saturday’s Singapore Guineas.
Should Fitzsimmons decide to send his runner to the races any time soon, it could pay to be in his corner.
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