Leatherhead looks good to go, Latest Racing News - The New Paper

Leatherhead looks good to go

From Ricardo Le Grange's yard, his prep looks spot on

The name may conjure up images of a turtle - as in a Leatherback.

But, you'd better believe it, Leatherhead is no slouch.

He's a swift customer.

How swift? We could find out as early as tomorrow when Leatherhead the horse lines up for his third Kranji outing.

As part of his preparation for that race, trainer Ricardo Le Grange sent him out for a gallop yesterday morning and what he did on the track impressed clockers and the curious alike.

Ridden by apprentice jockey T Krisna, Leatherhead started slowly from the 600m mark and gained speed rapidly at the top of the straight. He ran the 600m in 40.1sec.

His stablemate Pindus, who took a trail behind him, clocked 46.3sec.

Sure, it wasn't an outstanding time from the three-year-old Pindus but it was an illustrious workout and it will surely smoothen out the rough edges.

More about him later.

For now, let's focus on Leatherhead.

A finely contoured chestnut, Leatherhead knows the ropes.

He had nine starts on tracks in Australia's eastern states where he did rather well. He picked up a win and three seconds from nine starts.

That win was over the 1,300m.

Arriving at his Kranji stable as a three-year-old, he turned four on Aug 1 and, two weeks later, he had his first start.

He had put up decent shows in two trials prior to that first run and racegoers must have liked what they had seen at those morning hit-outs.

They gave him their support at his first racestart. Lukewarm as it might have been, he was sent out as a healthy $77 chance.

So, with Vlad Duric in the saddle, off they went.

Leatherhead had drawn the outermost gate and as the race panned out, Duric couldn't get the inside run he so desired.

Racing wide the whole way, they finished fourth behind Lim's Craft.

Michael Rodd was on the reins at his second start, some three weeks ago.

Again, he failed to draw a decent gate and he finished sixth in a crowded finish.

Leatherhead won a trial just a week ago and, with yesterday's gallop under his girth and his preferred 1,400m ahead of him, he looks like the one they all have to beat.

As for Pindus, he was the raging $10 hotshot on debut - and he raced like one.

Alas, it wasn't a winning debut. After racing together over the final 150m, Lim's Knight collected the accolades, winning by a neck.

That was over the flying 1,000m. Pindus goes over 1,200m in Race 4 tomorrow.

It's looks the ideal trip for this son of Exceed And Excel who finished second in a trial just a week ago.

With his rivals showing little form on paper, Pindus could cap a good day for the Le Grange yard.



Leatherhead (T Krisna) * 40.1, quickening only in the straight.


Pindus * 46.3, going a little fast in the straight.