Makkem Lad’s up to the task
The best from the trials run on Tuesday morning
Trainer Donna Logan certainly believes in keeping her horses on their toes - even if it means giving them rousing gallops just days before they actually go to the races.
So far, it has worked for her. Last Saturday saw Qiji Star win at nice odds after being given a brisk gallop on Tuesday morning.
Will it produce the same results this Saturday for Golden Flame and Makkem Lad?
The pair gave Logan the quinella in the second of two trials at Kranji on Tuesday morning and there was plenty of evidence to suggest both horses are near the top of their game.
Here's how the trial panned out.
Golden Flame, ridden by Rizuan Shafiq, jumped cleanly and quickly muscled his way to the front.
Makkem Lad, the mount of apprentice jockey Yusoff Fadzli, rode shotgun, holding second spot while keeping out Day Approach and Wecando.
The plan worked for the stablemates. They straightened for the run home with Golden Flame still in control and covered by Makkem Lad, who raced together with Day Approach.
The trio were almost in a line at the furlong mark - until Golden Flame made a breakaway.
Under strong riding by Shafiq, he pulled clear of Makkem Lad to win by 3/4 lengths.
Golden Flame clocked 59.78sec for the Polytrack 1,000m dash. Makkem Lad registered 59.89sec.
It was four starts ago, in May, that Golden Flame won a race - his fifth. That was over the mile on grass in Class 4. He goes over the same track and trip on Saturday but he faces Class 3 rivals.
Is he up to the task?
Well, it may look daunting but Golden Flame did run third in a Class 3 race last year. The winner of that race was a champion named Inferno.
As for Makkem Lad, he's in the form of his life. His last four runs have produced two wins, a second and a third.
He takes on some nippy ones in the $100,000 Kranji Stakes A sprint over 1,200m.
The race brings together the likes of Grand Koonta, Kharisma and Fame Star.
That's a formidable trio. Toss in trainer Mark Walker's quintet, headed by Savvy Command and Sacred Gift, and the race becomes a mouth-watering affair.
But Makkem Lad will be comfortable in that company.
Still on the trials, it will be an injustice not to mention Smoke And Mirrors.
The five-year-old was in a "race" of his own when winning the opener on Tuesday.
Ridden by Rozlan Nazam, he controlled the tempo until the final 250m, when he opened up. He blew away his rivals, winning by almost eight lengths. He clocked 60.92sec.
It has been a year since he opened his Kranji account. That's a long time between drinks, but he is now in a place where he can do some damage.
So keep him on your shortlist. He might be ready to grab some headlines.